Fainting (Syncope)

What is fainting?

Fainting or syncope is a temporary loss of consciousness. If you’re about to faint, you’ll feel dizzy, lightheaded, or nauseous. The skin may feel cold, damp and sticky. The person may lose muscle control and fall down.

When someone faints, make sure that the airway is clear and check for breathing. The person should lie down for 10-15 minutes. Most people recover completely. Fainting can sometimes be a sign of a serious medical problem. Hence, it is important to visit health care provider to find out the reason behind fainting.

How bad is my fainting?

Mild: The symptoms are light-headedness, weakness and dizziness.

Moderate: You may have nausea, slurred speech, altered vision and breathing problems. You may need medical assistance.

Severe: It involves loss of consciousness, orthostatic (an upright posture) collapse and excessive sweating. Visit your doctor if you have fainted and do not know the cause or you have recently fainted more than once.

How to manage mild fainting?

Keep track of your symptoms using Ankr (myAnkr web portal or the Ankr app). It will help you describe the discomfort to your doctor or nurse.

  • Lie down to avoid injury due to falling. Don’t stand up until you feel better.
  • You can also sit and bend forward with your head between
  • Get up slowly from a sitting or lying-down position.
  • Don’t skip meals.
  • Feeling lightheaded, weak, and having the sensation of spinning are warning signs of fainting. If you notice any of these signs, sit and put your head between your knees to help get blood to your brain.
How to manage moderate and severe fainting?

See your doctor if you faint and also have any of these symptoms or conditions:

  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Chest Pain
  • Pregnancy
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sudden onset (no warning signs)
  • Blurred vision
  • Confusion
  • Trouble talking
  • Taking longer than a few seconds to regain consciousness
  • Fainting when you turn your head to the side
  • Fainting more than once in a month
What causes fainting?

Some causes of fainting include

  • Heat or dehydration
  • Certain cancers (lung cancer) and cancer treatments
  • Emotional distress
  • Standing up too quickly
  • Certain medicines
  • Drop in blood sugar
  • Heart problems

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