You’re getting older and dizzier. It isn’t one of those effects of aging that people warn you about, but it’s starting to impact your day-to-day activities. You still feel the same on the inside, but getting out and about is increasingly challenging. How will your family react when you clue them in on your dizziness and balance problems? Will they struggle to understand what the problem is, overreact and maybe even panic?
You may need some help, but you’re not ready for the nursing home just yet. You’ve still got things to do and places to be. So, here are few pointers to help your loved ones understand your dizziness and hopefully provide you with the support you need.
Set the scene
Let your relatives know that dizziness and balance problems in old age are common. Explain that some of your friends are experiencing similar symptoms.
Put them in your shoes
Explain what it feels like when you have a dizzy spell. Do you feel like the room is spinning? Do you feel nauseous? They can more easily look out for signs that you’re feeling dizzy if they can imagine what you’re going through.
When and where
Are there situations where you are more likely to have a dizzy spell or feel off balance? Perhaps it is when you get up from a seated position. Maybe it happens more often when the lighting is poor, or as the day wears on and your muscles feel more tired. Knowing this will help your loved ones provide support when you need it.
What can they do?
Tell your loved ones how they can help you. Can they come over to ‘fall proof’ your house by installing some grab bars and securing the banister? Could they book you a hearing and balance test at Celestial Hearing to help uncover if your dizziness is ear-related? Maybe it would just be nice if they kept you company on your morning walk to help build up your muscle strength.
Knowing exactly what they can do for you will prevent them from going overboard, so you can maintain your freedom and still get the support you need.
With these tips in mind, go ahead and have that chat. You may be surprised by just how well it goes.
Paula C. Rogers, BC-HIS is a Board Certified Hearing Instrument Specialist and has been helping people to restore and care for their hearing health for over 30 years. You’ll experience the warmth and loving care of Paula and her team who will become your hearing care partners for life at their Las Cruces Hearing Center.