Do you roll over in bed or sit up in the morning and feel your head spinning? Or do you fear putting your head back into the hairdressers basin? What about turning your head quickly…. do you have to grab onto something to stop yourself from falling?Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) only affects about 2.4% of the population but for those it affects these questions may be familiar. BPPV is the most common type of vertigo/dizziness, unfortunately the prevalence increases 7 fold in those over the age of 60 and is more commonly found in women than men.
So what IS BPPV?
BPPV is a problem that occurs in the inner ear, in the semicircular canals, to be more specific.
Imagine reeds in a river bed… When the current is fast it causes the reeds to lean over, when the current is still, so are the reeds. Now imagine the reeds break free from the riverbed and float downstream with the current losing their bearing of where they belong.
This is much the same as BPPV. Crystal like particles in the inner ear are dislodged from the gel bed they belong on and float freely in the canal. As a result the brain can no longer register whether or not it is moving. Normally, when the head is stationary the crystals are stationary, but now they are floating in the semicircular canals.
Although the cause of BPPV is largely unknown it can result from previous ear infection, stress, trauma to the head, inner ear surgery, medication, rapid head movements or an inflamed nerve.
BPPV is not a permanent condition and is often varied in its severity. So you may feel that you have bad days and better days, it can even clear up on its own and never come back (for the lucky people!).
The good news is BPPV is not something you have to live with!!!
There are physio’s at Bend + Mend trained in treating BPPV and it can take just one session to have you waking up clear headed and no longer dizzy!