Meniere’s disease is one of the most chronic inner ear disorders, yet it remains largely misunderstood. As a result, answering questions like how long does Ménière’s disease last can be quite a tricky thing to do. Also, many wonder how an inner ear problem causes nystagmus, an uncontrollable movement of the eyes. Is it a common symptom among every patient with Meniere’s? What happens when you experience nystagmus, and how do you find relief? Let’s try to dig deep and trace the connections between Meniere’s disease, nystagmus.
An Overview on Nystagmus
Essentially, nystagmus is a symptom that causes involuntary eye movement. If you have Meniere’s and suffer from nystagmus, you might observe horizontal or rotary nystagmus movements during the initial phase of your vertigo episode. Also, the direction of the eye-jerking tends to beat towards the unaffected ear. Then, during the recovery period, the eye movements’ direction shifts to the other side of the body.
This symptom occurs because the eyes and the inner ears, muscles, receptors on your skin work together to perceive balance and motion. The eyes help your brain establish awareness of the surroundings, such as objects approaching while you walk and how your body orients with everything else around you.
As a result, when your body perceives false motions, your eyes respond by assessing the area around you. They could jerk in various directions to grasp what’s happening with your body.
Visual Consequences of Nystagmus
Although the nystagmus symptom that occurs when you have Meniere’s disease isn’t long-term, it can still cause several problems. For starters, it can negatively impact your balance whenever you suffer from a vertigo episode. Also, because the eyes play a pivotal role in sensing your body’s current orientation, nystagmus can cause other problems, like:
- Reduced depth perception and eye focus
- Trouble coordinating body movements
- Difficulty in seeing where you are going
If you start experiencing nystagmus or other Meniere’s symptoms, you should avoid doing activities such as walking around or crossing the road. These could only make you prone to accidents and injuries. Try to wait until the episode stops, which usually lasts approximately 15 minutes to 24 hours.
So, now that you have a good grasp of nystagmus as a Meniere’s symptom, let’s look into the answer to the question, how long does Ménière’s disease last?”.
How Long Does Ménière’s Disease Last?
Until today, Meniere’s disease remains incurable. Once you get diagnosed with Meniere’s, you will have the symptoms for life. This means you need to develop coping techniques to lessen the impact of the disorder in your life. For starters, you need to have a clear overview of the symptoms you have. How often do you suffer from the symptoms? How long do your episodes last?
Besides nystagmus, you will likely experience other symptoms of Meniere’s, including:
- Ear congestion
- Hearing ringing sounds in one ear (tinnitus)
- Short-term hearing loss
- Mild to severe vertigo attacks
Once you know what sort of health problems come with your inner ear disorder, you can start planning what to do. Some of the usual course of action that patients with Meniere’s disease try include the following:
- Using inner ear injectables like antibiotics, especially for cases that stem from a bacterial infection
- Reducing salt consumption to lessen water retention that may contribute to the ear congestion
- Lessening caffeine consumption to minimize the impact of tinnitus
- Practicing stress management tactics to curb anxiety and stress levels
- Getting rid of smoking habits which could affect one’s overall health
- Taking anti-nausea medications or sedatives like promethazine and diazepam
- Trying physical therapy maneuvers like the Epley Maneuver
How to Effectively Address Meniere’s and Nystagmus
Besides the remedies and lifestyle changes enumerated above, you can also look into upper cervical chiropractic adjustment. It’s among the leading remedies used to manage the impact of Meniere’s Disease. This approach focuses on correcting faulty spinal alignments, one of the primary factors that aggravate a patient’s Meniere’s disease symptoms.
Studies point to the flexible nature of the neck bones as a possible culprit of various health problems such as Meniere’s and Nystagmus. If you notice, your upper cervical bones allow maximum movement of the head. You can turn left to right, tilt your head up and down and even do sideward movements. Unfortunately, even the slightest pressure on these bones could cause them to shift their position.
If you previously had a neck or head trauma or a poor posture because of prolonged sitting, you might actually have misaligned neck bones. Unknowingly, your neck bones might be pressing on your brainstem, a critical part of the spinal cord that connects it with the brain. It also regulates all the processes in the body, such as eye movements.
Additionally, the neck bone misalignment can impede the flow of fluids from your head. This results in abnormal fluid buildup, leading to ear congestion and the vestibular nerve’s irritation or compression. Unless you address the cervical subluxation, the problems would persist and cause you more discomfort.
Get Help From A Nearby Upper Cervical Chiropractic
If you suspect cervical bone misalignment or if other remedies don’t work for you, you can consult with an upper cervical doctor. Using your condition’s diagnosis, your upper cervical chiropractor can provide you with fully customized adjustments that can potentially reduce your nystagmus and other symptoms of Meniere’s disease.
Feel free to get in touch with an upper cervical care chiropractor and ask more insights on questions like “how long does Ménière’s disease last?”. Find a nearby upper cervical chiropractic doctor today!