BPPV/Vertigo

Vertigo

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Vertigo is a sensation of spinning, either of yourself or your surrounds. It may also be used to describe feelings of dizziness, light-headedness or unsteadiness. There are many structures that help with balance, the eyes, neck muscles and joint receptors, but the vestibular system is responsible for controlling most of the balance.

The vestibular system is housed within the head. When the head moves the fluid and otoconia inside the labyrinth also move, sending messages via the vestibular nerve to the brain stem and cerebellum. This information is correlated with the information from other structures so you can determine your orientation, direction of movement and acceleration.

Sarah, Tamsen and Ro can help with vertigo.

BPPV

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The symptoms of Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) are sudden attacks of vertigo, nausea and eyes flicking. It can affect people of any age and may be very debilitating. The initial cause may be unknown or could be the result of head or ear trauma, ear or nerve infection, Meniere’s disease or minor strokes. Severe, sudden episodes may start after rolling over, sitting up, bending forward, looking up or even just when the car stops moving.

It is thought that the otoconia (small crystals) inside the inner ear become displaced and interfere with normal flow in the fluid-filled semicircular canals, sending incorrect information to your brain and resulting in dizziness.

Usually only one ear is affected and the movement that triggers vertigo is quite specific. Your physiotherapist will use the assessment of trigger movements to treat your symptoms. Techniques include Epley’s or Semont manoeuvres and a home exercise program. You may also require medication to limit the nausea.

Sarah, Tamsen and Ro can help with BPPV.