BPPV Prevention strategies

BPPV Prevention strategies

By:  Mapula Mokwena (Clinical Audiologist)

Daily physical exercise: exercise can be an essential component of BPPV prevention. Regular physical activity, especially exercises that focus on balance and strengthening the vestibular system, can help reduce the risk of developing BPPV. BPPV can sometimes occur after a fall or head injury. Engaging in exercises that enhance muscle strength and coordination can reduce the likelihood of falls, thus lowering the risk of BPPV.

Vitamin D regulation: Vitamin D may play a role in the regulation of inner ear function and there is some evidence suggesting a link between vitamin D deficiency and BPPV. Vitamin D is crucial for calcium absorption and calcium imbalance can affect the functioning of the inner ear.

Blood pressure regulation: There is evidence suggesting a potential link between blood pressure regulation and BPPV. Orthostatic hypotension refers to a drop in blood pressure when standing up, leading to dizziness or light-headedness. BPPV can be triggered or exacerbated in some individuals by sudden changes in blood pressure due to postural changes.

Treat underlying vestibular disorder: Treating an underlying vestibular disorder can play a significant role in preventing or reducing the recurrence of BPPV. Addressing and managing an underlying vestibular disorder can help improve the overall function of the vestibular system. This can enhance the body’s ability to maintain balance and reduce the likelihood of developing BPPV. The vestibular system is responsible for adapting to changes in head position and movement. Treating an underlying vestibular disorder can improve the system’s adaptive capacity, making it less prone to BPPV episodes triggered by positional changes.

Avoid head injury: Head injuries are a risk factor for BPPV. BPPV can occur after a traumatic injury to the head, such as concussion or any significant blow to the head. BPPV is often caused by the displacement of the tiny calcium carbonate crystals(otoconia) within the inner ear’s semicircular canals. These crystals are responsible for sensing head movements and helping maintain balance. A head injury can dislodge these crystals, leading to BPPV. It is essential to note that BPPV may not appear immediately after a head injury. Sometimes, there can be a delayed onset of symptoms making it challenging to connect the injury to the vertigo experienced later.