My name is Lily-Sue, but my mummy calls me Munchkin (or 'Munch' for short!) I am 8 years old, and this is where my mummy will help me write all about all the fun things we do together. I hope you enjoy reading about the adventures of my mummy and me, Munchkin, with the occasional appearance from the siblings - Beastie and Plumlet.

Friday, 1 August 2014

Tell me, mummy ... Why do I get dizzy when I twirl?

Week 3 of our new linky already! I'm getting closer and closer to the point at which I will have to stop calling it 'new'! I am really pleased I started this series of posts. Not only is it celebrating the fact that our kids are curious about the world, but it has made me more conscious of, and probably more responsive to, the questions that Munchkin asks me every day!

Munch spends a lot of her time trying to entertain Beastie Boo and Plum. She's at her happiest when she is making them laugh, and every smile, every giggle, every excited squeal from them encourages her to do more! The other day, she was dancing around in front of Baby Plum as he rolled around on the lounge floor, watching her every move. Then Beastie joined in. I swiftly removed Plum from the floor (anyone that knows Beastie will understand my reasoning for this!!) and within seconds, I had 2 little girls spinning round and round the room, laughing uncontrollably as they bumped into each other and landed on their bums in a disorientated state!

"Mummy, can you feel that ...? The floor is wobbly!"

Then, whilst laying flat on her back on the floor, slightly breathless and staring at the ceiling, Munch says:

"Why do I get dizzy when I twirl, mummy?"

A feeling of relief washed over me. A question that I can answer ... I think! I vaguely remember that Science lesson at school with Mrs Thomas! So I cast my mind back to find the best answer to present to this curious 4 year old who was waiting for a response ...

"Your brain has lots of liquid in it, and that liquid tells your brain whether you are standing upright, laying down, spinning around or if you're upside down. The liquid moves with your head. When you spin around and then stop spinning, it takes a few seconds for the liquid in your head to stop swirling round, so your brain thinks you are still twirling around, and this makes you feel dizzy."

At this point, she sits up and starts tipping her head from side to side, announcing that she can hear the liquid moving around in her head. Then she starts to worry that if she ever bangs her head, she might make a hole and all the liquid would spill out! It all started to get a little weird! Whilst Munch was laying there, contemplating the worst that could happen to this fluid in her head, Beastie was still twirling around the room with squeals of "weeeeeeeeeeeee!!", oblivious to Munch's new found knowledge!

I asked her what she thought caused dizziness, and she said:

"I thought, when I spin really fast, I make the floor go wobbly!"

So she thought, when she felt dizzy, so did everyone else. It was completely new to her, this knowledge that when she spins around, she is the only one that feels dizzy.

This is what the experts say ... 

"When we spin, our brain receives mixed messages. The endolymph slowly begins to move in the same direction we are spinning. As time goes by, the endolymph catches up to the rate of speed we are spinning and no longer stimulates the hair-like nerve cells. This causes our brain to quickly adapt to the nerve signals. However, when we stop spinning, the endolymph continues to move and stimulates hair cells in the opposite direction.

These hair cells send wrong messages to the brain making it think that the head is still spinning although it actually has stopped. As a result of this inaccurate signal, we experience dizziness. Eventually, the endolymph stops moving and no more signals are sent to the brain. The brain interprets that the spinning motion has ceased and the dizziness disappears."

This week's information was taken from Cool Quiz.

"I don't think I will make myself dizzy any more, mummy. If I do it too much, the liquid might keep on spinning, and I'll walk around all wobbly forever!!"

I assured her this wouldn't happen! Not sure she believes me right now! Beastie doesn't seem to care though. She didn't stop spinning around like a mini Tasmanian devil the whole time! 

Week 3 of our new linky, "Tell me, Mummy", done. We would love for you to join in and share the big, difficult, embarrassing questions that your little ones have asked you. Did you offer an answer? We're you left speechless? Did your quest for a response lead you to some amazing resources that you'd like to share with others? Whatever it is, if it relates to one of the millions of questions our children ask us, it has a place here! Just enter yourself on the linky and grab the badge code below to add to the bottom of your post! For a more detailed explanation of what Tell me, mummy is all about, take a look here.

Tell me mummy

See you next week!

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