Do you get dizzy or lightheaded when you turn your head or roll over in bed? You may have Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo, or BPPV.
BPPV often occurs if you have bumped your head pretty hard. Inside our inner ear, we have two distinct sections: our cochlea, for hearing, and our semicircular canals, for balance. We have three semicircular canals, and each one is positioned to represent the three planes of space. These canals are fluid-filled, and at the base of these canals are little "crystals." When you bump your head, these crystals can become dislodged and then float around in their respective canal. A quick movement of your head moves these dislodged crystals, which can cause you to feel dizzy.
There are ways to treat this condition, and the easiest is to be aware of your condition, and avoid moving your head quickly. When you are getting out of bed, move slowly. This helps a lot of people avoid the symptoms completely; however if your condition is more severe, you should see an Ear Nose and Throat doctor. He or she can diagnose your condition, and if it is truly BPPV, there is a "maneuver" they can perform to help you get those crystals back where they belong. This is either called an "Epley" maneuver or a "repositioning" maneuver. It only takes a few minutes in the ENT's office, and provides a great deal of relief for many people with this condition.
Dizziness should never be treated lightly. It could result in a fall which could lead to an injury. Consult an ENT if you have any issues with dizziness, especially if it is also associated with any noises in your ears or head, and/or a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ears. Be proactive and be safe!
~ Susan Rardin, M.A., F-AAA