Read below about dizziness made worse by moving the head, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your dizziness made worse by moving the head from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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10 Potential Dizziness Made Worse by Moving the Head Causes

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.

  1. 1.Possible Meniere's Disease

    Meniere's disease is a disorder of the inner ear. It can cause severe dizziness, a roaring sound in the ears called tinnitus, hearing loss that comes and goes and the feeling of ear pressure or pain. Meniere's commonly develops between the ages of 20 and 60, and most often starts in only one ear.

    Life-long condition, attacks may happen 6-11 times per year on average.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    nausea, episodic dizziness, ringing in the ears, vertigo (extreme dizziness), ear fullness/pressure
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Inner Ear Infection (Labyrinthitis)

    Labyrinthitis is an infection of the inner ear.

    If there is no neurological issues (from a stroke or meningitis), the prognosis is good. However, symptoms of Labyrinthitis tend to linger for an extended period of time.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    nausea, headache, diarrhea, vomiting, fever
    Symptoms that always occur with inner ear infection (labyrinthitis):
    vertigo or imbalance
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo

    Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is a common disorder of the inner ear that causes episodes of intense dizziness with head movements. It is believed this is caused by tiny calcium crystals in the inner ear that become dislodged from their usual position within the inner ear.

    Condition will either resolve on its own or is highly treatable with a physical maneuver.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    nausea, episodic dizziness, vomiting, vertigo (extreme dizziness), dizziness
    Symptoms that always occur with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo:
    episodic dizziness
    Symptoms that never occur with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo:
    hearing loss, heartbeat sound in the ear, ringing in the ears
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  4. 4.Hypertensive Crisis

    A hypertensive crisis occurs with when there is a severe increase in blood pressure. In some cases, this causes damage to the organs.

    Recovery is dependent on severity of illness and treatment type.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    headache, nausea or vomiting, chest pain, being severely ill, dizziness
    Symptoms that never occur with hypertensive crisis:
    chest pain that is worse when breathing
    Urgency:
    Emergency medical service
  5. 5.Temporomandibular Joint (Tmj) Dysfunction Disorder

    The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is located in front of the ear, and it connects the jaw to the side of the head. Temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is a painful condition which can be caused by excess tension in jaw mucles, faulty alignment between upper and lower teeth, arthritis in the joint, or injury of the jaw or face.

    Outcome is highly case-dependent.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    dizziness, pain, restricted movement, and clicking sounds from jaw, history of headaches, jaw pain, pain in the back of the neck
    Symptoms that always occur with temporomandibular joint (tmj) dysfunction disorder:
    pain, restricted movement, and clicking sounds from jaw
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

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  6. 6.Low Blood Sodium

    Hyponatremia is a deficiency in sodium. Sodium is one of the most important nutrients in the body, needed for nerves to conduct signals, muscles to contract, and blood pressure to be maintained at safe levels, etc. A deficiency in sodium can cause severe, widespread symptoms.

    1-30 days

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, headache, nausea, loss of appetite, dizziness
    Urgency:
    In-person visit
  7. 7.Iron Deficiency Anemia

    Anemia is a condition in which the body does not have enough healthy red blood cells, which deliver oxygen. Iron deficiency anemia occurs when the body does not have enough iron. Iron helps make red blood cells.

    Resolves with treatment

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, headache, shortness of breath, dizziness, heavy menstrual flow
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  8. 8.Dehydration

    Dehydration occurs when the body does not have fluid to function properly, because of decreased intake or increased losses like vomiting and diarrhea. Symptoms of dehydration include extreme thirst, dark urine, fatigue, and dizziness.

    With rehydration, symptoms resolve completely.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, dizziness, vomiting or diarrhea, racing heart beat, being severely ill
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room
  9. 9.Earwax Blockage

    Ear wax production is a normal process, as the body makes wax to protect the ear from infection. Sometimes ear wax can build up and cover the eardrum, which is a thin layer of skin that stretches across the end of the ear canal and picks up sound from outside. Ear wax buildup has nothing to do with poor hygiene, and it is not possible to prevent a build-up by washing.

    Condition likely will go away on its own after 5 days without treatment. However, with pain, dizziness, or feelings of fullness, the earwax should be removed.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    dizziness, dry cough, ear canal pain, ear fullness/pressure, ringing in the ears
    Symptoms that never occur with earwax blockage:
    swollen ear, fever
    Urgency:
    Phone call or in-person visit
  10. 10.Viral (Norovirus) Infection

    Noroviruses are a group of related viruses that leads to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and cramps. These viruses cause gastroenteritis, an inflammation of the stomach and intestines. When the diarrhea and/or vomiting is severe, dehydration can occur. Symptoms of dehydration include a dry mouth, dizziness, urinating less frequently and dark urine.

    Usually resolves within 2-3 days.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    diarrhea, vomiting or nausea, fatigue, nausea, abdominal pain (stomach ache), headache
    Symptoms that always occur with viral (norovirus) infection:
    diarrhea, vomiting or nausea
    Symptoms that never occur with viral (norovirus) infection:
    severe abdominal pain, throbbing headache, severe headache, tarry stool, vaginal bleeding, alertness level change
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Dizziness Made Worse by Moving the Head

  • Q.Have you experienced any nausea?
  • Q.Have you been feeling more tired than usual, lethargic or fatigued despite sleeping a normal amount?
  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Do you hear a ringing or whistling sound no one else hears?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our dizziness made worse by moving the head symptom checker to find out more.

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Dizziness Made Worse by Moving the Head Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced dizziness made worse by moving the head have also experienced:

    • 8% Nausea
    • 7% Headache
    • 5% Fatigue
  • People who have experienced dizziness made worse by moving the head had symptoms persist for:

    • 42% Less Than a Day
    • 25% Less Than a Week
    • 17% Over a Month
  • People who have experienced dizziness made worse by moving the head were most often matched with:

    • 13% Possible Meniere's Disease
    • 12% Inner Ear Infection (Labyrinthitis)
    • 10% Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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