1.Feeling Dizzy Could Be a Sign of an Inner Ear Problem
“One of the most surprising causes of dizziness is benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, or BPPV,” says Gregory Whitman, MD, an ear and brain specialist with Massachusetts Eye and Ear’s Balance and Vestibular Center at Braintree Rehabilitation Hospital. Your inner ear contains calcium and protein-based sensing crystals called otoconia, says Dr. Whitman. If these crystals are dislodged and float into your inner ear’s canals, you may have a brief spinning sensation. “It’s a simple mechanical problem that can and should be corrected with physical therapy, and not with medication or surgery,” says Whitman.
Though BPPV is the most common inner-ear-related balance disorder, it affects only about 1 out of 1,000 people per year, according to the Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA). And while it can affect adults of any age, it primarily affects older adults. Most cases occur for no apparent reason, but BPPV has been linked to trauma, migraines, inner ear infections, diabetes, and osteoporosis. After treatment, 50 percent of patients may experience the problem again within five years, especially if it was the result of trauma, say experts at VEDA.