You’d think that vertigo and dizziness episodes are bad enough in itself, as it can heighten the risk of falling and limit mobility.
But a new study published in the journal Research in Vestibular Science reveals shocking tricks that your vertigo could be playing with your brain.
And what parts of your brain are messed with depends on which ear your vertigo stems from.
Most importantly, once your vertigo is healed, your brain also returns to normal.
Your brain is split into two hemispheres. Although they’re mostly similar, each part has different functions and roles.
When it comes to body movement, your brain crosses over. The right brain hemisphere controls your left leg and arm and the left hemisphere controls your right leg and arm.
The ears and balance system, on the other hand, operate a little differently. The left ear connects to the left hemisphere and the right ear to the right hemisphere.
The question that scientists wanted to answer was: “Does vertigo in the left ear affects the left hemisphere different than the right hemisphere and vice versa.
To find out, they picked volunteers who suffered from vertigo and identified that ear that it stemmed from.
They then used spatial working memory as a measurement since it mostly operates from the right brain hemisphere.
The spatial working memory is your ability to keep spatial information active in your working memory for a short period, such as when comparing two maps, one from what you see and the other from your spatial memory.
Those suffering vertigo from the right ear fared a lot worse on spatial working memory test than those who suffered vertigo from the left ear.
This shows that vertigo negatively affected the side of the brain which it stems from, showing that vertigo was not just a problem with the balance system or could increase the risk of falling but could also have severe consequences on your brain function.
The good news is that once the vertigo was healed, the spatial working memory returned to normal. This is another important push to tackle your vertigo as soon as possible.