Dizziness is a familiar sensation of feeling lightheaded or unbalanced. It is not necessarily a standalone disorder but can be symptomatic of various ailments, including vertigo and ear infections, nervous system disorders, endocrine system diseases such as diabetes, and even heart ailments. While some instances of dizziness are harmless, others can be severe and recurrent. One causative agent of dizziness that frequently goes undiagnosed is medication.
Many drugs and medications list dizziness as a side effect. These include antidepressants, sedatives, anti-seizure drugs, antibiotics, tranquilizers, chemotherapy drugs for cancer treatment, and medication for high blood pressure. As a result, it is essential to understand the drugs that can potentially cause dizziness and consult with your doctor if you experience dizziness after taking medication.
Certain types of antidepressants, such as fluoxetine and trazodone, can lead to dizziness and lightheadedness. It is critical to consult with a doctor before changing or discontinuing medication. Furthermore, alternative therapies such as counseling and psychotherapy have shown promising results in reducing the symptoms of dizziness and should be considered.
Drugs for blood pressure
Examples of blood pressure control drugs include ACE inhibitors, diuretics, beta-blockers, and calcium channel blockers. Examples of each are as follows:
- ACE inhibitors – lisinopril
- Diuretics – hydrochlorothiazide and furosemide
- Beta-blockers – propranolol
- Calcium channel blockers – nifedipine
A doctor may recommend exercise and an improved diet to help reduce blood pressure and eliminate the need for medication altogether. Alternatively, a physician may prescribe other types of medication to replace the one that causes dizziness.
Anticonvulsants are used to treat epilepsy, bipolar disorder, fibromyalgia, and diabetic neuropathy and include drugs such as pregabalin, gabapentin, and divalproex. These drugs are critical to controlling the disorders prescribed for and should not be discontinued. However, if dizziness is experienced, a doctor can adjust the dosage or check drug levels.
Muscle relaxants, such as metaxalone and cyclobenzaprine, are used to relieve headaches, back pain, and neck pain. Alternative therapies such as exercise, physical therapy, yoga, massage, biofeedback, and progressive relaxation can be used as non-medication-based options. Over-the-counter pain relievers may also be used instead of muscle relaxants, which cause dizziness.
Sleeping pills like temazepam, diphenhydramine, zolpidem, and eszopiclone can induce sleep in cases of insomnia. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is an effective alternative to taking medicine for insomnia. It’s a form of talk therapy that may be more effective than medication. Additionally, it is suggested that lifestyle changes be made to improve sleep quality and sleeping conditions.
Nitroglycerin is taken to relieve chest pain or angina and can cause dizziness. Unfortunately, there is no other alternative available to replace nitroglycerin. However, taking nitroglycerin while seated and remaining seated a few minutes after consuming it is recommended.
Need Additional Advice on Alternatives? Turn to Nirvana Healthcare Network’s CHOP Services
Dealing with common medications that cause dizzy spells can often feel like an unfortunate fact of life on your way toward better health. However, in many cases, you don’t have to settle for dealing with these episodes if you know about the medically approved alternatives. Instead of feeling trapped, consulting with a trusted professional to assess your options is vital.
Finding a trusted medical service that can answer your questions surrounding medications that cause dizziness and what you can take as an alternative is more important than ever. The CHOP services in East Orange, NJ, offered by the Nirvana Healthcare Network, are designed to provide access to underserved communities and ensure they can utilize alternatives that don’t cause these side effects. Contact our team and schedule your next appointment today.