What Causes a Balance Disorder (And What Can I Do About It)?

Do you often feel dizzy or off balance and you don’t know why? You could have a balance disorder.

If you often have bouts of dizziness or the room starts spinning, you could have vertigo or another type of balance disorder. This can be frustrating, frightening, and even dangerous if it happens when you are standing, moving, or driving. Balance disorders have many causes, and a doctor specializing in treating these conditions can help you determine what is causing your problem.

At Michigan Neurology Associates & PC, our expert neurology team provides on-site diagnostics for balance disorders. To get started, you can visit any of our four convenient locations serving the Metro Detroit area: Clinton Township, St. Clair Shores, Utica, and Westland, Michigan.

Read on to learn what might be causing your balance disorder and what you can do about it.

Common causes of balance issues

Most causes of vertigo or balance disorders are actually ear-related. The inner ear sends signals to the brain regarding the direction of your body and head movements in relation to gravity. If there is fluid or inflammation in the inner ear, or the start of a disease, the nerves will start sending mixed signals. This can cause symptoms including bodily disorientation, dizziness, nausea, and a sense of “floating”.

The main type of ear-related vertigo is benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). It’s caused by tiny calcium crystal particles (canaliths) building up inside your inner ear canal. The cure for this is usually manual manipulation of the head to change the position of the crystals and restore balance.

Alternately, you could have an infection causing inflammation in the inner ear, which disrupts signals from nerves that normally send signals to the brain. The inflamed tissue presses on the nerves that help determine your balance. This is called either vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis and can usually be resolved with antibiotics. 

Finally, Meniere's disease is a buildup of fluid in the inner ear that can cause vertigo and tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Treatment options include medication and physical therapy.  

Other reasons for balance issues

Balance issues can also be caused by a multitude of other health conditions, or even your geographical location. You can develop a balance disorder due to:

At Michigan Neurology Associates & PC, we’re ready to help you get a clear diagnosis and a customized treatment plan for your balance disorder. Our skilled neurology team will help you get to the bottom of your balance disorder and find relief from your symptoms.


If persistent dizziness is disrupting your life, you can schedule an appointment at any of our four Metro Detroit locations by calling us today.

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