BPPV Affects millions our app can help!

What is the BPPV Self Help app?

The BPPV Self Help app is a mobile app developed by Today’s New Idea to assist sufferers of Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) undertake a programme of Brandt-Daroff exercises that may have been prescribed as a self help/home treatment regime by their physician.

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) is a recognised medical condition and, as the name implies, is one of many conditions that can cause dizziness and nausea.

As with all neurological related conditions, especially dizziness, you should consult your physician as soon as you can after your first episode so that they can make a prompt diagnosis of the underlying cause.

Today’s New Idea is a technical consultancy/software development company and as such is not qualified to discuss the diagnosis and treatment of BPPV - for that we refer you to your physician.

However, for those curious about the condition here are some of the highlights:

Brandt-Daroff exercises with the BPPV Self Help app

A Brandt-Daroff exercise programme is often prescribed for the home treatment of BPPV and is reputed to have a success rate of 95%. The Brandt-Daroff exercise programme, often simply referred to as BPPV exercises, is not the only BPPV exercise programme recommended by clinicians but it is one of the most common and is the one that our specialist recommended and worked for us. In the future we may look at developing an app to help with some of the other BPPV exercises e.g. Epley manoeuvre, Semont manoeuvre etc.

While the Brandt-Daroff exercise programme is considered to be one of the more arduous BPPV treatment regimes it is actually fairly simple to do and requires only one piece of equipment - your bed!

First prepare the area you are going to use for the exercise by moving any pillows and blankets on your bed off to the side a bit. Once you have cleared a space you are ready to begin.

  1. Sit on the edge of the bed facing forwards and hold this pose for 30 seconds
  2. Now lean over and lie on your side with your head turned at a 45 degree angle. Hold this pose for 30 seconds
  3. Now sit up again facing straight ahead. Hold this pose for 30 seconds
  4. Now lean over and lie on the opposite side from that in stage 2. Again turn your head 45 degrees and hold this pose for 30 seconds
  5. Return to the sitting position

The above exercise should be repeated 5 times with each batch of repetitions being repeated 3 times throughout the day, morning, midday and evening. The entire programme lasts a minimum of 14 days. So this gives a minimum of 14 x 3 = 42 exercise sessions over a two week period.

While each exercise is simple to do we have found that it is surprisingly easy to lose track of how many repetitions have been completed as well as your overall progress in the exercise programme. Similarly a crucial part of the exercise involves angling your head at 45 degrees for 30 seconds while in the lying down positions. This poses two challenges, firstly how do you know what 45 degrees is and secondly how do you know if you have held the pose for the requisite period of time. This is why we developed the BPPV exercise app.

Let's repeat the exercise steps outlined above but this time we will see how the app can help keep us on track.

Person sitting in the vertical start position

1. Sit facing straight ahead holding the app in front of you, tap the start button the first time to begin the exercise

Person lying on their left hand side, position 2

2. When the pose timer reaches zero you are ready to change position. Lie on your side holding the app in front of you. Note the needle in the gauge shows the approximate angle your head is turned to. Once you have settled down the pose timer will automatically start counting down the 30 seconds

Person again sitting in the vertical position

3. Sit up straight again and the needle will return to the vertical position. Again once you have stopped moving the pose timer will start counting down

Person lying on their right hand side, position 4

4. When the pose timer reaches zero you are ready to change position. As before lie on your other side holding the app in front of you. The app will tell you if you are living on the wrong side

Person again sitting in the vertical position at the end of one repetition

5. Return to the upright position and notice that the app has increased the number of repetitions you have completed

Progress bar show one complete repetition

Repeat the above until you have completed all five repetitions. This marks the end of one exercise session

Keeping track of progress and what to do about missed sessions

A chart showing your progress

Your progress through the exercise programme can be easily viewed by tapping the "progress" tab.

While the ideal is to strive for 3 exercise sessions per day there may be times when this is not convenient or possible. In these cases you can simply note the occasions this happens and add them onto the end of the exercise programme. So if there were one day in which you only managed a single exercise session and another day in which you only managed 2 exercise sessions then you could simply add another two days to the exercise programme and carry out the missing exercise sessions over the course of these extra days. If you are using the our app it will adjust the programme duration to reflect your progress.

To the best of our knowledge the majority of sufferers can 'get away' with two exercise sessions per day but doing so means the exercise programme should be extended to a minimum of 21 days.

If you find you have missed a couple of days entirely then you would be best advised to restart the exercise programme from the beginning rather than to continue on in the hope that it is still effective. The app makes it easy for you to restart your exercise programme.

Throughout the duration of the exercise programme the app will send you notifications of missed sessions, assuming you have allowed this feature, to encourage you to complete the programme.

The BPPV exercise app has been designed and developed to help BPPV sufferers help themselves and as such we welcome any feedback that the user community provides that helps make the app a more effective tool.

Version 3.3 compatible with iOS 14 now available in the App Store!

Download on the App Store

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