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:
- 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.
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
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
Non-urgent advice: See a GP if:
- you're worried about your dizziness or vertigo
- it will not 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. Do not self-diagnose – see a GP if you're worried.
Dizziness while you're ill with something else
Dizziness for no obvious reason
|Dizziness symptoms||Possible causes|
|When standing or sitting up suddenly||sudden drop in blood pressure (postural hypotension)|
|Feeling off-balance, losing some hearing, ringing or other sounds in your ears (tinnitus)||inner-ear problems|
|Feeling off-balance or like things are spinning, feeling or being sick, sometimes after a cold or flu||labyrinthitis|
|After starting new prescription medicine||side effect of medicine|
|With symptoms like hearing loss, double vision, blurred vision, numb face, arms or legs||decreased blood flow to the brain, possibly from clogged arteries (atherosclerosis)|
Help us improve our website
If you've finished what you're doing, can you answer some questions about your visit today?
Take our survey.
Page last reviewed: 24 April 2020
Next review due: 24 April 2023