Feeling Dizzy? Room Spinning? Physical Therapy Can Help!!!

Feeling Dizzy? Room Spinning? Physical Therapy Can Help!!!

Written by Brittany Messer, DPT, Clinic Manager, PRA Plaza

Have you ever experienced a spinning sensation with lying down, rolling over or looking up? If so, it’s likely that you were experiencing a bout of Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV). BPPV is a common inner ear problem that causes spinning with particular head movements. It may also cause nausea and difficulty with balance. These symptoms can be frightening, but can be efficiently and effectively treated with the skills of a physical therapist.

Sometimes called “rocks,” there are calcium carbonate crystals in the inner ear that become loose and move from the utricle into the semi-circular canals with BPPV. With certain head movements, these crystals cause a disruption in the canal fluid, which leads to a sensation of dizziness.  BPPV often happens spontaneously, or may occur after a head injury or fall. Patients that have had an episode of BPPV may be more likely to have a re-occurrence in the future.


BPPV can be treated by a physical therapist in as few as 1-2 treatment sessions. The Epley Maneuver, a series of specific head movements performed by a physical therapist to reposition these crystals, is the most common method of treatment. This maneuver may be performed multiple times in one treatment session. Your physical therapist may encourage you to avoid quick head movements and certain activities for the remainder of the day following your treatment session.  Your physical therapist may also teach you exercises to improve your balance and unsteadiness.

If you are experiencing spinning, unsteadiness, or dizziness with movement, call a physical therapist at Progressive Rehabilitation Associates for an evaluation!

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