Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is a sensation of dizziness and disorientation. “Benign” means that though it may be unpleasant or uncomfortable, BPPV is rarely serious, except for a possible increase in the chance of falling. “Paroxysmal” means it comes on suddenly but only lasts for a short amount of time, usually less than a minute. “Positional” means certain changes in posture or movement trigger the feeling of vertigo.

1. Common symptoms of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo

The most common symptom of BPPV is dizziness — the feeling that the inside of a person’s head or their surroundings are spinning; essentially, vertigo. This sensation can also come with other unpleasant symptoms such as loss of balance, unsteadiness, blurred vision, lightheadedness, nausea, and vomiting. Usually, a change in head position cause these symptoms, such as tilting the head, lying down, standing up, bending over, or rolling over in bed. Some people experience the symptoms simply sitting or standing, as well.

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