Inner Ear Crystals, Vertigo, and Dizziness

Wednesday, July 22, 2020
Jackie Lake, PT with Joy
Jackie Lake, PT with Joy

Imagine rolling over in bed and suddenly the room begins to violently spin.  As you lay there and try to regain your focus, within a minute or so, the sensation stops.  This is one of the ways that an individual describes the symptoms of vertigo.  Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common cause of dizziness in adults.  Changes in head or body position may cause tiny calcium carbonate crystals to be displaced in the inner ear.  These crystals disrupt the normal fluid movement in the ear sending false messages to the brain giving a sense of movement which results in short bursts of vertigo.  

While sometimes BPPV can resolve on its own, Prairie Lakes  Physical Therapy can offer successful evaluation and treatment of vertigo and dizziness.  We use video recording goggles to help determine which canal is involved to assist in selecting the appropriate treatment intervention. 

Research indicates that BPPV can be successfully treated 90% of the time in just 1-3 visits.  Once the BPPV has resolved, sometimes patients may also experience other problems such as balance difficulties, blurred vision with head movements, or a sensation of brain fog.  A comprehensive evaluation for vestibular rehabilitation will determine if further treatment is necessary.  

In the picture is Joy, a vestibular rehab patient. Joy is performing eye exercises with a cognitive challenge. By tracking the words back and forth with her eyes, she is working on gaze stabilization. Vestibular rehab has helped Joy decrease vertigo & dizziness, improve balance, and improve tolerance for daily activities.

Prairie Lakes Physical Therapy: Vestibular Rehab

Written by Jackie Lake, Physical Therapist
Last modified on Wednesday, July 22, 2020