How to Manage Meniere's Disease Naturally
Although first diagnosed by its namesake in the 19th Century, Meniere's disease has no known cure. Sometimes spelled Ménière's or Menière's disease, its cause is also hard to determine. We do know that its symptoms can be managed and those who are affected may still live a vital life with minimal side effects. Tortured artist Vincent van Gogh infamously cut his ear off. But did you know it was possibly exacerbated by the frustration of Meniere's disease? If untreated, the symptoms can be exasperating. This is why his oneHOWTO article explains how to manage meniere's disease naturally. We will even consider treatments to undertake if natural remedies prove too limited.
What is Meniere's Disease?
There are other conditions which affect the ear and may cause similar sypmtoms. Meniere's disease has a specific combination of symptoms leading to a persistent problem. To describe what it is will be best done naturally by telling you what happens if you have Meniere's disease. The four main characteristics are:
- hearing loss
- tinnitus (persistent ringing in the ears)
- vertigo (dizziness and spinning sensation)
- fullness in the ear (sensation of the ear being blocked or clogged)
You cannot have one episode and achieve a diagnosis. There are too many similarities to other ear conditions which may have led to some or all of these symptoms. Not all of these conditions are permanent or disease causing. To be diagnosed with Meniere's disease you will have to have 2 or more attacks which last between 20 minutes and 12 hours. You will also experience hearing loss in the affected ear which has been recorded during or just after a potential attack. Fluctuating symptoms of the ear and an incompatibility with other potential ear problem also help diagnoses. You can then see if you want to manage Meniere's disease naturally or look to another solution.
Some symptoms present in a similar way to strokes or severe migraines, one of the reasons diagnosis needs to be thorough. The symptoms can also be varied as they are not necessarily directly related to Meniere's disease. If vertigo is experienced, then nausea and vomiting may present themselves. So can falls without fainting which are known as drop attacks. Losing balance and dizziness can be very disorientating. One of the biggest problems can be due to mental stress and anxiety provoked by them, especially in people who suffer from longer spells. The disease usually presents itself later in life, with the majority of cases diagnosed in people in their 6th decade. Obesity may be a contributing factor.
Natural Treatments for Meniere's Disease - Diet
As there are still some unanswered questions about Meniere's disease, the treatments will likely differ from person to person. This is why some people think to manage Meniere's disease naturally as natural treatments can often be unique to the individual. There may be a trial and error period to undergo to find what works best for you. As always, if you are finding it difficult to know what to do or are unsure of anything related to your symptoms, seeking a physician's advice is imperative.
One of the possible causes of Meniere's disease is a build up of fluid in the ear which you might control naturally by diet. One piece of advice often given is to reduce sodium in your diet. You can do this by eating less salted products or salt enriched foods. This is to reduce fluid retention which is advised in many cases due to its benefit for overall health. Avoiding excessive intake of caffeine is also advised for people with Meniere's disease. It can exacerbate symptoms, so reduce or cut out tea, coffee and cola drinks. Avoiding alcohol will also be beneficial and the links to tobacco use and Meniere's has been well documented. It may be time to give up smoking if you have been diagnosed with Meniere's disease.
Natural Treatments for Meniere's Disease - Water
Meniere's disease is potentially caused by the build up of fluid in the ear. Increasing your intake of water might help you in this case as it will act as a diuretic. A diuretic is something which increases the amount of urine produced by the body. How it can be helpful is to flush out toxins and the hazardous build ups which may be causing Meniere's disease or the similar symptoms of a related condition. Drinking more water is a great way to treat Meniere's disease naturally as well as to promote overall good health.
You should also ensure to have a better balance of carbohydrates and protein. Avoid inflammation-causing foods such as sugar, artificial sweeteners, fried foods, saturated fats, trans fats and additives. Drinking plenty of water can help counter balance these effects. Controlling your diet and partaking in regular exercise will be much better for you in the long run.
Natural Treatments for Meniere's Disease - During an Attack
If you are having severe symptoms of Meniere's disease, you will need to consider your home environment. If you fall during an attack, the objects in your room can be hazardous. Try to have lots of clear space and no clutter in your home. If you have a lot of low sitting furniture with prominent edges, you should find ways to safeguard them. You should avoid glass coffee tables or tripod footstools in particular. This is a thorough way to manage Meniere's disease naturally as well as holistically. It's not just about what you put in your body, but about your natural environment also.
If you are feeling the effects of vertigo caused by Meniere's disease, you should lie down immediately and try to ride it out. Avoid bright lights and even moving images such as those on a TV screen. Do not partake in an activity which may be dangerous if suffering from vertigo (like driving or using heavy equipment). Ensure to rest up, not only during, but after attacks also. Physical therapy might help you deal with the symptoms during an attack. It is advisable for people with low mobility who may struggle to exercise.
Natural Treatments for Meniere's Disease - Mental Health
One of the main side effects of Meniere's disease is the effect it can have on a person's mental health. This is due to the symptoms of vertigo. The dizzy spells and imbalance associated with it can be very disorientating. As diagnosed Meniere's disease sufferers will attest, the minimum length of an attack is 20 minutes. While 20 minutes in such a disorientated state can seem like hours, those who are particularly unfortunate might experience the symptoms for hours on end. In turn, this can seem like days. The stress and trauma these cause may be acute. With no known cure, you will need to manage Meniere's disease symptoms to improve quality of life. This is the case if you are treating them naturally or otherwise.
Talking to friends who are able to support you, seeking advice from a mental health professional and being vigilant to find ways to maintain a good level of mental health are all important. Using mindfulness techniques such as meditation or regulated breathing can also be helpful. If you want to treat Meniere's disease naturally, the worst you can do is ignore your mental state. This can exacerbate the cause and lead more severe problems along the way.
Other Ways to Manage Meniere's Disease
You should seek the advice of a doctor immediately if you are unsure whether the symptoms you are experiencing are due to Meniere's disease. Other than managing Meniere's naturally, they may prescribe medicine which could alleviate the symptoms. They will not be able to cure the disease completely. There is some belief that allergies may be the cause of the disease. Although it is inconclusive you may be prescribed antihistamines to help. Natural remedies such as ginkgo biloba and vitamin C supplements might also be beneficial. They can help increase antibodies and blood systems which help the symptoms of Meniere's disease.
If the problem persists then surgery may be a course of action. This is often the case if it spreads to the outer ear. The fluid which builds up in the ear does so in something called the endolymphatic sac. Surgery might help to drain fluid from this area. This could involve inserting a shunt or even full removal of the sac.
If hearing loss persists, it may lead to the use of a hearing aid. Again, if your symptoms are reaching this stage and you haven't sought professional advice, you will need to do so immediately. It is great if you are able to manage Meniere's disease naturally, but it won't be the best course of action for everyone.
This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.
If you want to read similar articles to How to Manage Meniere's Disease Naturally, we recommend you visit our Diseases & secondary effects category.