Top of the page
Light-headedness makes a person feel that he or she is about to faint or pass out. It is caused by a momentary drop in blood pressure and blood flow to the head.
Nausea or vomiting sometimes accompanies light-headedness. Symptoms usually improve or go away after lying down.
It is common to feel light-headed occasionally. Light-headedness often occurs when a person gets up too quickly from a seated or lying position (orthostatic hypotension).
Unlike vertigo, light-headedness does not produce a sensation of movement. Vertigo causes a spinning or whirling sensation that may lead to nausea or vomiting, loss of balance, trouble walking or standing, and falling.
Current as of: September 23, 2018
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & David Messenger, BSc, MD, FRCPC, FCCP - Emergency Medicine, Critical Care Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2019 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.