DizzinessOverview

It's common to sometimes feel dizzy, lightheaded or off-balance, and it's not usually serious. See a GP if you're worried.

Check if you have dizziness

Dizziness includes feeling:

  • off-balance
  • giddy
  • lightheaded or faint
  • like you're spinning or things around you are spinning (vertigo)

How you can treat dizziness yourself

Dizziness usually goes away on its own. But there are things you can do to take care of yourself while you're feeling dizzy.

Do

  • lie down until dizziness passes, then get up slowly
  • move slowly and carefully
  • get plenty of rest
  • drink plenty of fluids, especially water
  • avoid coffee, cigarettes, alcohol and drugs

Don't

  • do not bend down suddenly
  • do not get up suddenly after sitting or lying down
  • do not do anything that could be dangerous while you're dizzy, like driving, climbing a ladder or using heavy machinery
  • do not lie totally flat if you feel like things are spinning
  • do not use pillows to prop up your head

See a GP if:

  • you're worried about your dizziness or vertigo
  • it won't go away or it keeps coming back
  • you're finding it harder to hear
  • there's ringing or other sounds in your ears (tinnitus)
  • you have double vision, blurred vision or other changes in your eyesight
  • your face, arms or legs feel numb
  • you have other symptoms like fainting, headaches, feeling or being sick

Causes of dizziness

If you have other symptoms, this might give you an idea of the cause. Don't self-diagnose – see a GP if you're worried.

Page last reviewed: 28/03/2017
Next review due: 28/03/2020