What does it mean when you are light-headed?

Written by chelsea rose
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Lightheadedness is caused by a number of reasons, some serious, some not. It's characterised by a feeling of weakness or lightness in the head, dizziness and feeling like you're going to faint.

Not Enough Oxygen

People get light-headed when they aren't getting enough oxygen to the brain. The fogginess and faintness that comes with it indicates that your brain doesn't have enough oxygen to stay alert, and is shutting down.

First Sign of a Health Problem

Lightheadedness often accompanies low blood sugar. It can also be indicative of a stroke or other circulatory problem. People with anaemia sometimes report feelings of lightheadedness, as do diabetics.


Overheating drains the body of fluids, dehydrating you. This may cause you to become light-headed. This is usually cured by stepping inside an air-conditioned building and drinking some water.


Nervousness or breathing too rapidly may result in hyperventilation, which reduces oxygen levels in your body while increasing carbon dioxide. Hold your breath for several seconds---or take slow and deep breaths into a paper bag---until your lightheadedness goes away.

Recurring Lightheadedness

See your doctor if you are experiencing recurring lightheadedness; it may be an indication of a serious health problem.

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