What causes dizziness? Is there a serious underlying problem?

Dizziness is a very common disease in the clinic, many issues can have dizziness as one of their symptoms such as neck and shoulder problems, internal organ disorders, acute infection of the five senses, inner ear and vision problems, high or low blood pressure. But some of the causes may be very serious. This article is aimed to give you an idea on how to understand what kind of causes result in your dizziness. I hope this will help you solve your dizziness and to prevent it from occurring or becoming more serious.

1. Symptoms of dizziness


Dizziness has the following different sensations with certain cases. I will list these:

Feeling dizzy with an unstable, floating sensation when you are walking, sitting or changing your posture.

Feeling dizzy with a sensation of motion sickness which may cause vomiting.

The serious dizziness is when you feel like everything is spinning, and have to close your eyes.

Most of dizziness cases have associated lethargy.


2. Causes of dizziness – do you suffer from these types of dizziness?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) discusses dizziness as being a very important and common disease. It is important to pay more attention to this, to find out the causes. Once you find the cause it is easy to fix it.

i) Qi, blood or internal organ weakness

Chinese medicine believes that to maintain normal functioning of the body, Qi and blood needs to flow to every part to support its function. When internal organs are deficient or when Qi and blood are weaker it will affect blood supply, causing certain parts of the body to have health issues. As the head is located on the top of the body, if there is deficiency it will affect the supply to the head. This will cause dizziness. For this type of dizziness, the body may experience the following symptoms; dizziness being on and off, becoming worse after doing activities or changing posture or when tired. Generally they are lethargic, short of breath, pallor, bloating, sluggish bowel movement, lower back pain, frequent urination, lower libido. Some people may have the common diseases; low blood pressure, iron deficiency, lower blood sugar.


If you have this type of dizziness I suggest…

i) You should seek medical attention to give your body a general check up, to fix the weakened part of the organs and increase in Qi and energy in your body. As this is the cause of your dizziness.

ii) Chinese medicine believes that a certain diet can increase body Qi, blood and energy. So I suggest that while you are undergoing treatment you can eat the following foods; beef, red date soup, goji berries, carrots, grapes, chinese red dates, egg, venison, lamb, beef. (If you would like some more suggestions, please see my other articles on diet therapy).

iii) Adjusting your lifestyle, try to avoid overdoing work or exercise, especially while you are experiencing dizziness. I suggest that for exercise you should do relaxing activities such as walking, yoga, tai chi. It is best to avoid doing exercise in the water or on the bike.

iv) When you change your posture, do it slowly. Especially whilst sleeping, when you have to go to the bathroom. I suggest that you should sit on the bed for a few seconds then slowly stand up, to give your body time to adjust. A few years ago, I had a friend who passed away at the middle of the night. Part of the cause was because he went to the bathroom and felt dizzy, fell over and hit his head.

v) Whilst you are menstruating you should drink more warm water, more nutritious soup to keep you warm and avoid exercise.

ii) Liver and gallbladder disorder

First of all I need to mention this type of dizziness is more dangerous than others, as this type is associated with a high blood pressure problem and may cause a stroke, especially when dizziness is associated with a strong headache. You should check your blood pressure and have a good rest.

Traditional Chinese Medicine diagnosis considers this type of dizziness is strongly associated with liver and gallbladder disorder. Especially, the liver and gallbladder containing more heat. The heat increases in these organs and not only causes increased blood pressure but dizziness and headaches. For these people they may experience the following symptoms; Stiff neck and pain, very emotional, depression, very stressed, red face, body feels hot, easy to perspire, insomnia, vivid dreams.


i) I suggest that if you suffer from this type of dizziness, please seek medical attention regularly, at least once every three months and regularly check your blood pressure. In case, you cannot control the symptoms of high blood pressure, you can try other types of therapy to help you fix the cause of dizziness that I mentioned above. Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture and one of these treatments which can help, especially in balancing your liver and gallbladder.

ii) I suggest that you should avoid doing strong or fast exercise. Be careful when bending over and lifting heavy objects.

iii) You can listen to soft music often, the calm your liver and gallbladder down.

iv) Avoid drinking tea or coffee before going to bed. Avoid watching very stimulus TV.

v) Whilst you are undergoing your treatment you should eat certain foods which can help you cool and balance your liver and gallbladder, such as; celery or celery juice, chinese cabbage, water melon, orange, pear, mung beans, green or peppermint tea. If you would like some more suggestions please see my other articles on diet therapy.

iv) You should try to keep you emotions calm and happy. You should avoid a very busy lifestyle or very emotional events.

iii) Neck and shoulder stagnation

In our clinic we realised that this type of dizziness is very common, people come to us for chronic dizziness. We find that the cause of the dizziness is associated with lack of circulation of the neck and shoulder.

There are six major channels that flow around the neck and shoulder to supply the blood and energy to the head. But if the neck or shoulder has a chronic or new injury, blood stagnation will occur in this area. This will block certain channels causing lack of circulation on the head. This will result in dizziness.

For this type of dizziness, the body usually has the following symptoms as well; neck and shoulder pain or stiffness, tingling or numbness of the hand or fingers, dizziness is worse in the early morning or around menstruation. Some cases can have the following associated diseases; migraine, period pain, frozen shoulder, tennis elbow.


If you suffer from this type of dizziness you should…

i) Fix your neck or shoulder problem. Improve the channel function. Acupuncture or  cupping or scrubbing or Chinese massage is more effective on working on the channels. Usually around two sessions of treatment, you can receive a great result.

ii) Avoid eating large amounts of frozen and cold foods. Keep your body and hands warm and avoid touching frozen or cold things. Especially in the winter or on a cold day.

iii) You should do more exercise outside, concentrating on the upper part of the body, to help improve the circulation.

iv) Other causes

Except the common causes we mentioned above, in our clinic we find that the following conditions may cause dizziness, such as; chronic or acute infection of the five senses, eye or ear health issue, early stage of pregnancy, associated with period, insomnia and more.

3. How does Chinese Medicine help your dizziness?

i) On your first visit to our clinic, we will check you by traditional Chinese medicine diagnosis method to find the exact causes of your dizziness.

ii) We will give you an idea on what organs are disordered or what channels are blocked.

iii) We will set an individual treatment for your body and your condition.

iv) According to your causes of the dizziness we will give you a suggestion for changes in your diet and lifestyle to help complement your treatment and for a quick recovery.


4 Responses to What causes dizziness? Is there a serious underlying problem?

  1. maham 9 October, 2012 at 11:09 pm #

    i have a feeling of dizziness often whenever m sitting aor lying there is a sudden feeling that ill fall down and if i focus on one thing everythng around seems to b moving
    n then i have a headache n sometimes i feel pressure in my head
    dun know whts wrong and no body can understand this feeling
    is it possible to know wht i am goin through?

    • Ping Ming Health 11 October, 2012 at 8:02 pm #

      It sounds like you are describing symptoms of vertigo, it is a type of dizziness where there is a feeling of motion even though you are not moving. It is a common symptom with many causes. Please make an appointment to visit your medical doctor first for an examination. Depending on the exact cause of your symptoms, Chinese medicine may also be able to help.

      You can read this article on vertigo for more information:

  2. jeanna 29 October, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    Ive been experiencing severe constant dizziness since i had my 3rd c section/ tubal ligation over a year ago. Doctors dont help anyone have any ideas??? Please help

    • Ping Ming Health 10 December, 2013 at 7:28 am #

      Dear Jeanna, we suggest you consult with an experienced Chinese medicine practitioner to find out the syndrome that corresponds to your dizziness. We suspect it could be related to an underlying Blood or Kidney Deficiency which can be treated with Chinese medicine.

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