Skip to content

    Brain & Nervous System Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Understanding Fainting -- Prevention

    How Can I Prevent Myself From Fainting?

    If you have a tendency to faint and you are able to identify any situations that provoke fainting, try to avoid them. For example, you may need to be sure that you eat regularly to avoid hunger. Other interventions that may help are to avoid excess fatigue, warm environments, and alcohol -- all of which can cause fainting. You may need to learn to control your breathing so you don't breathe too quickly and hyperventilate when feeling anxious. You may need to get up very gradually from a lying position. Many episodes of fainting occur when getting out of bed, so it is wise to carpet the area around the bed and keep it free of objects that could be hit during a fall.

    To help prevent fainting, people who have documented heart-related attacks known as neurocardiogenic syncope -- mostly children and young adults -- should be on a high-salt diet and drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration and maintain blood volume. They should watch for the warning signs of fainting -- dizziness, nausea, and sweaty palms -- and sit or lie down if they feel the warning signs.

    Understanding Fainting

    Find out more about fainting:

    Basics

    Symptoms

    Diagnosis and Treatment

    Prevention

    Elderly people with fainting need to have their medications reviewed by their doctor. They should also exercise caution when changing positions from lying to standing. Slowly elevating the body allows it to adjust to the new position, minimizing the chances of fainting. Dehydration must also be avoided in older patients.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson, MD on March 04, 2015

    Today on WebMD

    nerve damage
    Learn how this disease affects the nervous system.
    senior woman with lost expression
    Know the early warning signs.
     
    woman in art gallery
    Tips to stay smart, sharp, and focused.
    medical marijuana plant
    What is it used for?
     
    woman embracing dog
    Quiz
    boy hits soccer ball with head
    Slideshow
     
    red and white swirl
    Article
    marijuana plant
    ARTICLE
     
    brain illustration stroke
    Slideshow
    nerve damage
    Slideshow
     
    Alzheimers Overview
    Slideshow
    Graphic of number filled head and dna double helix
    Quiz