Harvard Men's Health Watch

Dizzy spells when you stand up: When should you worry?

The slight drop in blood pressure when you
stand up, especially after waking, can cause
dizziness. To be safe, rise gradually.

Image: Thinkstock

If you are at risk of falling because of morning wooziness, tell your doctor.

It's a common phenomenon with an uncommon name: orthostatic hypotension. It just means that when you shift from lying down or sitting to standing, your blood pressure drops and you momentarily feel a little woozy. That's because blood pools in your legs temporarily when you stand up, and it takes the body a moment to compensate by squeezing blood out of the large veins in your legs and revving up the heart a bit. The dizziness may strike after you eat a meal, because digestion diverts blood flow and may lower your blood pressure.

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