Fainting, Sudden Dizziness: Emergency Room Tips
A person encounters dizziness when he or she feels lightheaded, unbalanced or woozy. Dizziness mostly affects sensory organs like the eyes and the ears. It’s important to note that feeling dizzy is not a disease. Instead, it is a symptom of various disorders in the body. In most situations, dizziness causes fainting, a sudden and brief loss of posture and consciousness brought about by low oxygen supply in the brain cells.
Sudden dizziness and fainting are mostly related considering that both cases involve the low supply of blood in the brain. Different conditions may lead to one fainting. According to FrontLine ER, some of the prevailing conditions that lead to fainting include:
- Unsystematic heartbeat due to heart disease
- Low blood sugar
In as much as fainting indicates a developing medical condition, it can at times occur amongst healthy people especially the elderly. People fainting accounts for a large number of emergency visits in FrontLine ER.
What Causes Fainting?
The most common type of fainting spell is the vasovagal attack, commonly referred to as neutrally-mediated syncope. A vasovagal attack is widespread among children and young adults. The condition happens when the blood pressure drops, thereby reducing the circulation of blood in the brain leading to loss of consciousness. A prolonged syncope triggers seizure and loss of balance.
Anxiety, Fear or Pain
A simple fainting spell at times may arise from anxiety, stress or use of alcohol and drugs. Fainting from stress and nervousness is always short-lived, and people often gain consciousness after a brief period.
Most people have problems with how their bodies react to blood pressure especially when they move quickly from a lying or sitting position. Fainting from blood pressure, however, is common in older adults.
Hyperventilation is a condition where one takes in too much oxygen and tends to get rid of too much carbon dioxide too quickly. When you become too panicked or anxious, you breathe fast and may lead to fainting from hyperventilation.
These conditions cause unusual patterns of stimulations to specific nerves in the body. They also cause inflammation to those nerves.
First Aid and Treatment for Fainting
When a person faints, it is essential to conduct a first aid that will help them regain consciousness within a short period. During such times, FrontLine ER advises the following first aid measures
Make the Person Safe
To make a person safe, lay the person flat on their backs, after which you should elevate their legs to restore a constant flow of blood in the brain cells. Finally, take note and loosen any tight clothing or belts.
Revive the Person
Trying to revive a person can be in the form of shaking the person vigorously, yelling at them or briskly tapping them. If there is no response from the person, it is advisable to seek medical attention from a nearby health facility.
In case the person is vomiting or bleeding from the mouth, try to turn them on their sides for a faster response.
Do Home Care
Home care involves giving the person glucose or any fruit juice that will provide them with energy and help them gain consciousness much faster. Be sure to stay with the person until they recover fully.
Upon observing these first aid tips, a person can wake up much faster than anticipated.
Just like fainting, dizziness has its symptoms that may include:
- Lightheadedness where a person feels like the head is lighter than usual
- Unsteadiness which is often due to loss of balance and posture
- Wooziness or heavy-headedness which makes one have a feeling of floating.
- A false sense of motion or spinning, otherwise known as vertigo.
- Walking, standing or moving the head can at times trigger or worsen these feeling
- Nausea or sudden and severe fatigue.
When to Seek Medical Attention
When you experience any recurrent, sudden and prolonged dizziness or vertigo, it is essential to visit your doctor. At the FrontLine ER, we have a team of dedicated physicians that can help any patient with prolonged and severe dizziness. Visit us to get emergency medical care if you experience vertigo with any of the below signs:
• Double vision
• Chest pain
• Rapid and irregular heartbeat
• Facial numbness and weakness
Nonetheless, take note of how long dizziness lasts and any other symptoms that accompany the dizziness.
Circulation Problems Leading To Dizziness
Circulation problems are problems arising due to an issue with how blood circulates in the body. Circulation problems include:
Poor blood circulation due to conditions like heart attack, cardiomyopathy or heart arrhythmia could cause severe dizziness.
A sudden or dramatic drop in blood pressure results in brief lightheadedness or faintness. Also referred to as orthostatic hypotension, the condition often occurs due to swift sitting or standing.
Other causes of dizziness
• Having neurological conditions like sclerosis or Parkinson’s disease.
The first aid steps for dizziness are similar to those of fainting. Are you experiencing dizziness or have any family member who faints frequently, then book an appointment with FrontLine ER for better medication and treatment.