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Are You Experiencing Dizziness?

We are all familiar with feeling dizzy, but when this sensation becomes part of your daily life, it may be cause for concern. Dizziness may affect your sensory organs, creating a false sense that you may be spinning. It is not necessarily a condition, but rather a symptom of other disorders. 

Experiencing an episode of dizziness may feel like:

  • A false sense of spinning
  • Unsteadiness or loss of balance
  • Wooziness
  • A feeling of floating
  • Lightheadedness or feeling faint

Sometimes your dizziness may be accompanied with nausea, vomiting, or fainting.

Conditions that Cause Dizziness

A Balance Disorder

A balance disorder is a condition that can bring about feelings of unsteadiness and dizziness. Even if you are sitting still, you may feel as though you are moving, spinning, or floating. A balance disorder can significantly affect your day-to-day quality of life. Some symptoms of a balance disorder include: 

  • Spinning sensation, known as vertigo
  • Feeling as though you are going to fall
  • Staggering when you walk
  • Faintness
  • Floating sensation
  • Blurred vision 
  • Confusion or disorientation

Balance disorders can be caused by a myriad of reasons, such as medications, an ear infection, a head injury, or any condition affecting the inner ear or brain. Some common types include Ménière’s disease, labyrinthitis, vestibular neuronitis, perilymph fistula and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. 

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)

Sometimes called positional vertigo, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo is the most common cause of vertigo, creating an intense, false sense that you or your surroundings are spinning. These periods of dizziness can range from mild to intense, and are triggered by moving your head. Other actions that can trigger an episode of BPPV include: 

  • Tilting your head
  • Bending down
  • Standing up
  • Rolling over

BPPV is caused by a disturbance in your inner ear, when small crystals of calcium carbonate break free from a different area in your ear and enter your semicircular ear canals. The presence of the calcium carbonate sends confusing signals to your brain about your body’s brain position, resulting in vertigo. 

Some risk factors for developing BPPV are:

  • Prior head injuries
  • Osteoporosis
  • Diabetes
  • Family history

Physical Therapy Treatments for Vertigo and Dizziness

Feeling dizzy can make it difficult to participate in daily activities. Fortunately, physical therapy may reduce many of the uncomfortable sensations associated with vertigo and balance disorders. Our certified doctors of physical therapy are ready to help you regain mobility and feel your best.

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