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Why does BPPV happen more often as I age?

Why does BPPV happen more often as I age?

Author: Cheryl Wylie, PT

Who's in the "no comment" zone!? Just when we think aging is hard enough, BAM, now you're getting dizzy too!?!

BPPV has been shown to occur more often the older we get. The reason for this comes down to tiny otoconia, or "crystals" inside our inner ear. These crystals are an important part of our inner ear as they give us our sense of gravity.

It is normal for these crystals to break off and get absorbed throughout our lifetime, but what we have noticed is that as we get older we seem to be breaking more off.

As we age, the crystals themselves also show wear and tear; tending to fragment, get smaller, and break away from the microfilaments that normally hold them together. With more crystals loose in our inner ear, there is just a higher chance some fall into one of our canals, causing BPPV.

Now, although this is a natural part of aging, BPPV doesn't have to be! It's easily treated with simple maneuvers which move the crystals out of the canals and back to the area where they can be absorbed.

If you are feeling dizzy, connect with a vestibular therapist in your area! And if you don't have access to someone, check out the Healing Vertigo App as an alternative resource for you!

About the Author 

Cheryl Wylie, is a vestibular physiotherapist and owner of Healing Vertigo. She is also the creator of our Vertigo Treatment App, and instructs vestibular courses to other healthcare professionals.
She offers virtual vestibular therapy for all Ontario Residents. If you're interested in working with Cheryl, connect below!