Labyrinthitis is a condition that causes swelling and inflammation in the inner ear. Symptoms may include hearing loss, vertigo or ringing. Several factors can cause labyrinthitis such as viral or bacterial infection, upper respiratory infection spreading to the ears or a middle ear infection entering into the inner ear.
Preventing Labyrinthitis Symptoms
According to "The New York Times", labyrinthitis typically goes away on its own after a couple of weeks. Fortunately, there are various steps you can take to reduce vertigo and loss of balance symptoms. Lay down when you begin to feel dizzy. Avoid jumping up and resuming activities until symptoms disappear. Refrain from reading while laying down. Turn down the lights in the room. According to the National Institutes of Health at www.nlm.nih.gov, symptoms can reappear from be exposed to bright lights.
You may need to take some time off work if your job requires you to operate heavy machinery. Have a friend or family member drive you to your appointments or to run errands. Complications from labyrinthitis may include bodily harm when trying to walk to climb. You may need to ask for help when walking. Fatigue and stress are two factors that can contribute to this ear infection's symptoms. Take some time to rest up and see how you feel before taking prescribed medications.
Treatment of Nausea and Vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are two of the major symptoms of labyrinthitis. To aid in reducing these symptoms, your doctor may prescribe a form of antiemetics like promethazine and prochlorperazine. These medications act in the brain to prevent nausea caused by vertigo. Some side effects may include low blood pressure and drowsiness.
According to the health provider Cigna, scopolamine is another drug used to reduce vertigo caused nausea. The theory behind the drug's medicinal abilities is that it reduces the activities within the vestibular nerve. The vestibular nerve runs between the inner ear and the brain. As the activity of this nerve reduces, the urge to vomit is greatly decreased. The medicine comes in the form of a patch called Transderm-Scop. Place the patch behind the ear. Side effects include dry mouth and blurred vision. Try out the patch of a couple of days to see if your nausea subsides.
According to the Florida Heath Finder, sedative hypnotics can be prescribed to help labyrinthitis. Anxiety associated with the condition can contribute to worsening labyrinthitis' effects. The most common drug used is Valium. Avoid taking this long term because it can become addictive. Take with a meal to reduce stomach pain. Valium's side effects include fatigue, constipation and depression.
Treating the Infection
Because most cases of labyrinthitis are caused by an underlining bacterial or viral infection, it is important to treat these infections in order to alleviate this ear infection. Follow the instructions for your antibiotics. Do not skip or stop taking the medication until it is completely empty. Suddenly stopping antibiotics leaves you at risk for the infection coming back and not reacting to the particular brand of antibiotics. Side effects from antibiotics include diarrhea, yeast infections and nausea.