As allergy season approaches, it’s crucial to address a common yet often overlooked symptom: dizziness. Dizziness can significantly disrupt daily life. However, understanding its connection to allergies can provide valuable insight into effective management strategies.

Two primary factors contribute to dizziness in the context of allergies:

Vestibular Migraines:

Vestibular migraines are a particular type of migraines that can present with symptoms such as:

  • dizziness,
  • visual disturbances,
  • light and sound sensitivity,
  • auras,
  • and headaches, although the dizziness and headaches often do not have to occur at the same time.

Migraines as a whole are common and often not diagnosed. Symptoms typically last minutes to days and are recurrent. Lab work and investigations are usually unremarkable, unless allergies are the cause. If an allergic cause is determined, sometimes avoiding that allergen is sufficient, but sometimes we  need to take further measures. This is because migraines can be due to too much of one thing or too much of a combination of things (i.e. stress, poor sleep, dehydration, poor dietary choices, hormonal changes). We tend to think of migraines as a “cranky brain”.

Secondary Endolymphatic Hydrops:

Characterized by a buildup of fluid in the inner ear due to the allergic reaction. As the inner ear is contained in bone it cannot puff up like our fingers and toes can when they are swollen. The build up of fluid in the inner ear can therefore cause symptoms such as:

  • ear pain,
  • pressure,
  • tinnitus,
  • and/or temporary hearing loss.

Symptoms last hours to days. Hearing tests may show a loss of hearing. Treatment typically includes avoiding the allergen along with other lifestyle choices like reduced caffeine, nicotine, salt and alcohol, along with making sure you are well hydrated. We tend to think of hydrops as a “cranky ear”.


Recognizing patterns in symptom occurrence following exposure to specific environmental factors (i.e. pets, dust, mold, pollen) or foods is key to determining if allergies are contributing to dizziness. Diagnostic measures such as allergy testing or elimination diets can aid in identifying triggers. However, it’s essential to rule out other potential causes and seek guidance from your family physician, nurse practitioner, or local vestibular therapist when experiencing recurring dizziness.

At North 49, we acknowledge the challenges of managing allergy-induced dizziness. Our team of vestibular physical therapists is equipped to assist you in navigating this journey, whether through collaboration with your healthcare provider or facilitating referrals to specialists for further assessment.

As we anticipate the onset of allergy season, let’s proactively address dizziness. Should you have any inquiries or require support, please do not hesitate to reach out to us by calling the clinic at 306.343.7776 or by booking a Vestibular Assessment through our website.