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Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)

  • Overview


    Suppose you suddenly feel like you or the inside of your head is spinning. In that case, you may be experiencing vertigo, often caused by benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), one of the most common types. BPPV can result in brief episodes of mild to severe dizziness when you move your head in specific ways, such as tipping it up or down, lying down, turning over, or sitting in bed. Although BPPV can be unpleasant, it’s usually not serious except for the increased risk of falls. You can get effective treatment for BPPV during a visit to your doctor’s office.

  • Symptoms


    Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) symptoms and indicators might include:
    A sense that you or your surroundings are spinning or moving (vertigo).
    Unsteadiness or a loss of balance.

    Symptoms of BPPV may appear and disappear quickly, typically lasting less than a minute. These episodes can also recur after a period of absence. A change in head position is usually the trigger for BPPV, although the specific activities that cause the symptoms can vary from person to person. Some individuals may experience a sense of imbalance while standing or walking. Abnormal eye movements are often present alongside benign paroxysmal positional vertigo symptoms.

  • When to see a doctor


    It’s essential to consult your doctor if you consistently experience sudden, severe, or prolonged dizziness or vertigo that can’t be explained.

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  • Causes


    BPPV can sometimes occur without any apparent cause, known as idiopathic BPPV. However, in cases with a known cause, BPPV is often linked to head injuries ranging from minor to severe. Other less common causes include conditions that harm the inner ear, damage that may occur during ear surgery, or prolonged periods of being positioned on your back, such as during a visit to the dentist. Additionally, BPPV has been linked to migraines.

  • Risk factors


    Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is a condition that can occur at any age, but it is most prevalent in individuals aged 50 and above. Women are more likely to experience BPPV than men. If you have suffered a head injury or have issues with the balance organs in your ear, you may be more at risk of developing BPPV.

  • Prevention


    Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is a condition that causes brief episodes of dizziness or vertigo when there is a change in head position. While there is no surefire way to prevent BPPV, there are some steps that you can take to reduce the risk of developing it. One of the most important things you can do is to avoid sudden changes in head position. This means moving slowly and deliberately when getting up from a seated or lying position. Additionally, practicing balance exercises and maintaining good overall health can also help reduce the risk of BPPV. If you do experience symptoms of BPPV, seek medical attention immediately.

  • *Please note that the information provided in the article is for reference purposes only. It is essential to consult a doctor before applying any of the suggestions mentioned.

Content Details

Medical info from Mayo Clinic, for reference only. Visit Hoan My for better advice.

Last updated on: 07/08/2023