Stop Spinning: Vertigo Relief Without Drugs

Vertigo: it’s a sensation thrill seekers will chase for fun– but imagine living with it all the time. Over two million Americans do… but there’s a simple way to relieve the dizziness. Robyn Haines tells you about it in today’s Healthy Living. For avid gardener Shelby Bearden, the dizziness came from out of the blue. It’s called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, or BPPV, and it can be triggered just by moving your head. It all starts in your ears: normally, crystals called otoliths move around in the semicircular canals in your inner ear, touching tiny hair cells which send information about your heads position to your brain. But when one of those crystals becomes stuck in a canal, it makes the hair cells respond to changes in position– that aren’t really happening. That leads to the dizziness and nausea. Kristy Olthoff is a physical therapist certified in vestibular rehab. Kristy uses a special set of maneuvers, called a canalith repositioning procedure, to get people with BPPV back on their feet. These exercises might seem simple, but Kristy warns– don’t try this at home. Thanks to Kristy, Shelby is no longer feeling dizzy. About 20 percent of people with vertigo actually have BPPV. In about half of all cases there is no clear cause, but when one can be pinpointed, it’s usually due to a blow to the head.