Don’t blame it on the booze you had last night, it is not the culprit. Don’t curse your dance moves which made you fall off the stage. It is not the rides in the amusement park that are to be charged for the dizziness you had the whole week. It may be in your ears.
If you ever experience a body balance problem, your ears could be responsible for it. Many would be surprised to know that your ears are not only meant to hear but also to keep you balanced. Maintaining body equilibrium or balancing is one of the many functions of the human ears. In a way, ears help us to hear, walk, stand, run and move without falling as they are one of the elements of our balancing system.
Surprised? We all know that balancing is a difficult task, indeed. We work really hard to balance our lives. It is equally hard for our body to stay in equilibrium and for that we have brain, ears, eyes and the sensory systems of the body that include muscles, joints and skin, working all together to make a vestibular system-the technical term for the balancing system. Ear is one of the main elements of this system and for that matter, you need to know comprehensively about the role of ears.
Parts of an Ear
A human ear has three main parts. The outer and middle parts of the ear are purely involved in auditory function and have very little to do with the act of body balancing. These two parts just collect the sound from outside in the form of nerve impulses for processing in brain. It’s the inner ear responsible for all the main balancing function. The inner ear is also known as labyrinth, which is a complex structure and is made up of different parts. Utricle, saccule, cochlea and three semi-circular canals are the main constituents of the inner ear. Labyrinth functions in a way that regulates body balance. Cochlea helps in hearing. Utricle senses when we change our position horizontally (during exercises or changing sides when we are consciously lying down) and saccule judges the vertical acceleration (such as moving in an elevator).
Do you know that there is a fluid, endolymph that moves around according to gravity? There are tiny hair cells in the inner ear that have sensors and can sense when the fluid moves over them. This movement information is then transmitted to the brain by semi-circular canals with the help of the auditory nerve. These senses help the brain to form impressions of the changing positions of the head as you move. Brain is able to construct a mental image of the body’s positioning. But that is not all; finally the brain sends signals to rest of the body, which provides it a proper balance.
Balancing system can go wrong
Just as it happens in our lives, our body’s balancing system too can go wrong. If you feel certain abnormalities in your body, you need to have a proper body balancing assessment. This test can be recommended if it feels that sometimes the whole world is spinning. That could be vertigo or dizziness. Or it may happen that your friend, who is usually well-behaved, starts making abnormal and embarrassing body moves on the road, as he maybe suffering from balance dysfunction. People showing the above symptoms with gait abnormalities or any disease of vestibular system may get diagnosed with balancing disorders related to ears. The assessment can help in determining the cause of the problem.
Balancing issues and dizziness can be signs of other problems, so proper diagnosis is a must. You should have properly checked for other problems as well that are associated with these common symptoms.
Stay away from cell phones until you are treated completely for balancing problem. The harmful radiations from the phones can worsen your condition.
The treatment includes proper medication and rest. There is no particular surgery for this health problem, if the problem diagnosed lies in the ears. The next time you decide to go for your dance classes don’t forget to clean your ears.