Meniere’s Disease information and support
What is Meniere’s Disease?
Meniere’s Disease (MD) is a condition in which there is excess fluid in the middle ear. Meniere’s Disease commonly causes four major symptoms:
- attacks of vertigo which tend to occur in clusters
- a fluctuating and usually progressive hearing loss in the affected ear
- tinnitus (ringing or other noises in the ear and head), and
- a sensation of aural fullness.
Other symptoms such as tiredness, ‘brain fog’, and poor memory may also be experienced.
Meniere’s Disease appears to be diagnosed when a person is in their late thirties to early fifties and it is uncommon for children to be diagnosed. Unfortunately, this is a time of life when people are busy with family and careers.
Vertigo attacks can occur without any warning and you cannot predict how severe the vertigo will be or how long it will last. Tinnitus (ringing in the ears), distorted hearing and pressure in the ear often occur in conjunction with the vertigo. In the early stages of the condition, hearing returns to normal levels following an attack, but as the disease progresses measurable and permanent hearing loss occurs.
Is there a cure?
Unfortunately, there is no known cause or cure for Meniere’s, although extensive research around the world is currently being done to understand the condition which affects around 50 thousand people in Australia, including many in Tasmania.
What treatment and support is available?
Although there is no cure for Meniere’s disease you can manage and minimise the symptoms and secondary effects through a careful combination of lifestyle choices, medication and other treatments. Reducing salt (sodium) in your diet is recommended. There is a support group in Hobart called Salt Matters which can assist people to manage a salt minimised diet.
The best treatment for Meniere’s Disease depends on what stage of the condition you are currently experiencing. It’s important to seek qualified medical advice from an appropriate health professional before beginning any treatment.
Support is available for people affected by Meniere’s and other vestibular (balance) conditions. Hearing Link Tasmania works with and supports Meniere’s Australia, a national organisation working to ensure that all Australians with Meniere’s Disease and other vestibular disorders will receive and have equal access to support services, information and personal support irrespective of geographical location.
Contact us today to receive support and information
If you have Meniere’s Disease or you know someone who is struggling with this or other vestibular conditions, please contact us at Hearing Link Tasmania and we will work with Meniere’s Australia to give you the necessary support, referrals and information to help you manage your condition effectively.
Hearing Link Tasmania would like to acknowledge Meniere’s Australia for supplying information to include in this web article.