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Labyrinthitis

Labyrinthitis

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Labyrinthitis is a condition affecting the inner ear, causing vertigo, dizziness, nausea and hearing loss. It is caused by inflammation of the labyrinth (a complex system of canals within the inner ear, responsible for balance and hearing).

Labyrinthitis: Symptoms

Labyrinthitis can cause a range of symptoms that affect the ear and hearing. It disrupts signals that are sent to the brain, which results in vertigo (room spinning) and dizziness (light headedness). These symptoms can be accompanied by hearing loss, which may be temporary or permanent and extreme nausea and vomiting.

In some cases, labyrinthitis can cause tinnitus, which is a ringing, buzzing, or humming sound in the ears. This can be particularly distressing for people who already have hearing loss, as it can make it even more difficult to communicate with others.

While it is unlikely that ear wax build up will directly cause Labyrinthitis, it may begin the early journey to an outer ear infection which can spread if left untreated. It is important to keep the ears clean and to have earwax professionally removed if you experience a wax blockage.

Labyrinthitis: Treatment and Relief

There are several treatment options depending on the severity of the symptoms. For milder cases, rest and over-the-counter medications such as ibuprofen can be helpful.

In more severe cases, prescription medications such as steroids or antibiotics may be necessary to treat the underlying infection or inflammation. Additionally, vestibular rehabilitation therapy may be recommended to help the brain compensate for the disruption in balance signals.

It will usually last around a week then start to improve. That said, chronic cases can last months or years so speak to your GP if you have the above symptoms. Other conditions such as Meniere’s disease, Vestibular Neuritis, strokes and migraines will be likely be ruled out before diagnosing Labyrinthitis.

Labyrinthitis can have a significant impact on the ear and hearing. It is important to seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms of labyrinthitis. Early diagnosis and treatment can help to prevent long-term hearing loss and other complications. Additionally, keeping the ears clean can help many ear conditions from developing.

Still concerned about your hearing?

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If you’re looking for further information on Labyrinthitis, then check out the NHS page here.