BPPV is the commonest cause of vertigo in the elderly with the incidence rising with age. It is caused by canaliths in the semicircular canals in the inner ear and presents with symptoms of dizziness on particular movement of the head. Various triggering factors can worsen or bring on the symptoms.
BPPV occurs when tiny crystals break loose and fall into the wrong part of the vestibular system in the inner ear, stimulating the nerves that detect head rotation. The brain receives the message that the head is spinning, although the head has only moved position slightly. BPPV is the most common cause of vertigo.
The condition is called benign because it is not life-threatening. It does not get worse with time. Paroxysmal means that the vertigo comes and goes. Positional just means that symptoms come from a change in head position.
Start in an upright, seated position on your bed. Tilt your head around a 45-degree angle away from the side causing your vertigo. Move into the lying position on one side with your nose pointed up. Stay in this position for about 30 seconds or until the vertigo eases off, whichever is longer.
Acute vertigo is best treated with nonspecific medication such as dimenhydrinate (Dramamine®) and meclizine (Bonine®). These medications are eventually weaned as they can prevent healing over the long-term, explains Dr. Fahey.
Many experts recommend that you try and sleep on your back, as the crystals within your ear canals are less likely to become disturbed and trigger a vertigo attack. If you happen to get up in the middle of the night, rise slowly as opposed to making any sudden movements with the head or the neck.
Walking is a simple but powerful exercise for vertigo that can help your balance. Walking with greater balance will allow you to function better on your own, which in turn may lead to improved self-confidence.
Dizziness: The dizziness of very high blood pressure is described as vertigo (a sensation that the room is spinning). 6 Nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite: Nausea associated with severe hypertension can develop suddenly and may be associated with dizziness.
In about half of all people who have BPPV, the symptoms go away after only 1 to 3 months. So treatment isn’t always needed. If the dizzy spells don’t go away on their own or are very difficult for the person to cope with, repositioning maneuvers can help.
Vertigo is also possible if the earwax pushes against the eardrum, or tympanic membrane. This symptom can cause nausea and a sensation of moving even when a person is staying still.
Treatments for vertigo An episode of peripheral vertigo usually goes away on its own in a few minutes. Sometimes it lasts for hours or weeks. If your vertigo lasts a long time, there is treatment. Doctors often prescribe anti-nausea drugs to slow down the dizziness.
Generally, see your doctor if you experience any recurrent, sudden, severe, or prolonged and unexplained dizziness or vertigo. Get emergency medical care if you experience new, severe dizziness or vertigo along with any of the following: Sudden, severe headache.
If you have been experiencing vertigo for more than a day or two, it’s so severe that you can’t stand or walk, or you are vomiting frequently and can’t keep food down, you should make an appointment with a neurologist.
Strawberries are a rich source of vitamin C and help ease the sensations that vertigo causes. You can eat three to four fresh strawberries every day. Besides, you can cut and place the berries in a cup of fresh yoghurt overnight and consume it the next day. Yoghurt is rich in magnesium and thus helps treat dizziness.