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Social Consequences




Experiencing dizziness, imbalance and vertigo symptoms are not only personally distressing, they have social consequences. For example people may think you are drunk when your head is spinning around and you are staggering.

The fear of the onset of an attack when going out in public can keep people confined at home.

The loss of hearing and tinnitus associated with some Vestibular disorders makes social communication difficult, especially in crowds.

Changes in personality brought on by dealing with the consequences of Vertigo and the need to avoid stressful situations may alter friendship patterns and social interaction.


Helpful Tip

Remember the “Golden Rule” is not to keep your vertigo symptoms to yourself, but to let others know what you are experiencing. You can then begin building understanding and support from those around you.



Having the support and understanding of family members is vital.

As primary caregivers, family members need to be informed and understand the impact and consequences of a vestibular disorder for example:

  • What to do when you have a vertigo/dizziness attack.
  • How best to prevent/alleviate future attacks.
  • Support for lifestyle modifications.
  • Encouragement.


Helpful Tip

Family members are welcome to access the resources of Whirled Foundation.



A chronic vertigo/dizziness/imbalance condition affects one’s relationships in a variety of ways.

There are the direct effects and consequences of a dizzy attack, which may come at an awkward time and affect social plans and outings etc.

There is the uncertainty of when another attack may occur. How will I cope? What will people think?

There are often social consequences from side effects such as loss of hearing and tinnitus as Menieres disease progresses. It is harder to hear people, particularly in groups or noisy situations such as restaurants.

How these play out and are handled depend on individual circumstances. However encouragement can be received and much learned from the experiences of other people.


Helpful Tip

Join the Whirled Community to learn and share your experiences.

Options include the online Members Forum, Social Media and local peer support groups.


When an attack happens

A full blown vertigo/dizzy/imbalance attack can be frightening and sometimes dangerous.

It is sensible to develop a strategy for dealing with your attacks.

  • Early and appropriate medical advice is important. Click here for symptoms  check.
  • Access a safe and secure position, where you can recover.
  • Inform others of what is happening.
  • Knowing what to expect after attacks. This will assist you and your support network.
  • Implement your 6 Step Action Plan.


Helpful Tip

Do not let the fear of a future attack unnecessarily rule your life. Learn to recognise symptoms and engage in preventative strategies.


Click here to read about Living with Vertigo: Employment Impacts.

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Whirled Foundation membership has great benefits and puts you in touch with others living with vestibular disorders around Australia and the world.

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