Are you one of those who have occasional sudden attack of dizziness for no obvious reason? Then you could be suffering from a kind of vertigo called Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo(BPPV).
The spinning sensation or feeling giddy happens when you turn or tilt your head slightly, sudden head movement or roll over in bed. This uncomfortable condition can just happen again without warning.
Why Does One Have BPPV?’
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is caused by a problem in your inner ear are called vestibular system. That is the part in your ear which contributes to our balance system and our sense of spatial orientation. Spatial Orientation is about having a sense of direction while moving around an environment.
There are tiny crystals of calcium carbonate inside your inner ear canals which help to keep you in balance. Normally, these crystals will move in a certain way accordingly to your movement. But when you have infection or inflammation in your ear, this can stop the stones from moving as they should be. As a results, it will send a false signal to your brain. That’s why you feel dizzy.
BPPV can occur either in the right or left ear. There are cases, where it happens to both ears.
Symptoms of BPPV
1. It starts suddenly
2. Lasts a few seconds to minutes
3. One feels as if they are spinning around, or that the surrounding is spinning around them.
4. Feeling nausea, loss of balance. Difficulties in standing or walking.
5. Vomiting due to dizziness and a loss of balance
How Do Doctors Diagnose BPPV?
The doctor perform a test called the Dix-Hallpike maneuver, Nylen–Barany test or the roll test. He or she will watch your eye movements as he or she holds your head in a certain position and asks you to lie quickly backward over a table.
Watch how the doctor perform Dix-Hallpike below:
The use of medical prescription to this kind vertigo or dizziness is NOT really that effective.
These are the three main ways to treat BPPV:
i) Epley’s Maneuver
ii) Brandt-Daroff exercises
iii) Semont Maneuver
The Epley’s Maneuver or canalith repositioning procedure (CRP). The function is to move or reposition the small piece of bone-like calcium crystal debris (canalith) that is floating inside your inner ear, so that you don’t get the spinning sensation. It is usually performed by a doctor, a chiropractor, or a physical therapist.
How To Do Epley’s Maneuver
1. Firstly, you are seated upright on the bed with your legs fully extended.
2. With your head turned 45 degrees towards the affected side, the doctor will swiftly place you down backward on the bed, with your head over the edge of the bed for 20 seconds.
3. Then the head is turn 90 degrees to the other side for about 10 seconds.
4. Next your whole body is turned to lie on side way with your head facing the floor for 20 seconds.
5. Then slowly you can sit up.
Watch the video below performing canalith repositioning procedure for right BPPV:
Besides doing the Epley Maneuver, you can also try this method called Brandt-Daroff exercises. This exercise is to get the patient to get used to the position which causes the vertigo symptoms.
Remember these exercises will not cure this spinning condition, but over time they can reduce symptoms of vertigo. It just help to get over your vertigo sooner. You can do this yourself at home.
How To Do Brandt-Daroff exercise
1. Sit upright position.
2. Get into the lying position on one side with your nose pointed up at about a 45-degree angle or half-way to the ceiling.
3. Stay in this position for about 30 seconds.
4. Now slowly move back to the seated position and look straight ahead for 30 seconds.
5. Repeat the same procedure on the other side.
Do 5 repetitions of the exercise for at least
twice a day. You will feel dizzy, but it will become less intense with each repetition of the excercises.
Watch the video of how to do Brandt-Daroff exercise:
This procedure is performed with the help of a doctor or physical therapist. It is done by holding your head and firmly moved into different positions. This will make the crystal of calcium carbonate or canaliths (also known as otholiths) to move freely. This is the culprit which causes vertigo.
Watch the three videos of Semont Maneuver:
For left posterior BPPV
Disclaimer: The information and reference materials contained here are intended solely for the general information. It is not to be used for treatment purposes.If you have persistent health problems, please consult your health care provider.