Posted on December 16, 2016

Vertigo is ruining my life

lifestyle

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This is a hard topic to talk about. One, because I hate admitting that there is something wrong with me and two: because I’m always a bit reluctant to talk about health issues online.

There are plenty of times where I see people comparing illnesses, it’s as if unless you have it worse than everyone else, you don’t have right to complain. I’ve always found that frustrating, like the time someone compared depression to cancer on Twitter. You can’t compare someone’s experience of cancer with someone’s experience of bipolar with someone else’s experience of MS or someone else’s experience of being paralysed. They’re all devastating illnesses that can impact the life of the sufferer and the sufferers family in a big way. So without meaning to compare what’s going on with my health at the moment to anyone else’s health issues, I want to talk about my health and how it’s making my life hard.

I’m 30 years old. I have a job that involves me walking around and being on my feet 80% oof the time. I love going to the gym and running, cycling and being active. It’s important to me because it helps me feel better about my body to keep myself healthy. I like going out for meals, nipping into the shops by my gym and pride myself in being fit and healthy so I can use my body to do the things I enjoy.

vertigo

Just over a year ago I started feeling odd. I kept feeling like my brain would just stop for a split second. As if I would fall over and have a fit.

I’ve never had a fit, but that’s what I imagine it to feel like right before. Like someone pressing down on my brain. Not my skull, but my actual brain. I thought I was just tired and drinking too much coffee.

It went on for months.

One day, it got really bad. I had to sit down in the canteen at work and I couldn’t walk or stand. Even sitting was a struggle. It felt like everything was moving and I was on the verge of passing out. I couldn’t shift the feeling. After about an hour I had to go home.

I booked doctors appointment the next day. I remember the receptionist down the phone telling me there were no appointments and I cried and said I couldn’t cope. She asked if it was a medical emergency. I doubted myself but said yes.

As I had no idea what was wrong with me, I had built up in my head that I would be rushed straight to the hospital for a brain scan. I prepared myself not to come back home. I know that sounds dramatic, but the way I was feeling was terrifying and intense.

I’ve you’ve ever felt like you are not in control of your consciousness, then I’m sorry. It’s scary to feel like any moment, you’re just going to go.

When I went to the doctors she listened to my symptoms and diagnosed me with vertigo. I was given some tablets to help the dizziness and told to rest. Recovery time? Could be a day, a week, a month. Who knows?

I had four and half days off. I went back to work still not feeling 100% but was able to walk.

Over the past years, I’ve had incidents where the vertigo has played up. I would just take medication and sit down for a bit and most of the time it would be gone within the hour.

Over two weeks ago, I had a flare up at the gym. I stopped exercising and went home. The next day I felt fine. Went to work, to the gym and again, the vertigo struck. The next day I wasn’t working but still had vertigo during my day off – unusual to say I’ve not been moving much.

The next day, work was hell. I had to get someone to carry me to my car to get my medication and it just wouldn’t shift. Eventually, it got a bit better so I could carry on until the end of my shift. On my next shift, it was so a bad I had to go home sick. It’s been over a week since I went off sick. I tried to go back last Thursday but just walking into work made me ill. I managed three hours of utter pain and anxiety before I had to go home.

I don’t usually suffer from anxiety. I’ve had around 3 panic attacks in my life – all triggered something terrible – not because I’m an anxiety sufferer. I sat in the canteen at work and had that feeling. My legs go numb, my arms and face tingle, my stomach feels like it’s fighting to get out. I was feeling this because I was worried about getting back to the office only 10 feet away. I was getting this because I was worried about going to the toilet in case I couldn’t get there without passing out. I couldn’t even stand up to get myself food so had to ask someone to get me some crisps out of the vending machine.

I went to the doctors the next day and they told me what I had been told before. Just rest and take pills.

JUST REST AND TAKE PILLS DO YOU EVEN KNOW ME?

I do not feel any better. Each day, the feeling is the same. I try to go to the supermarket and have to leave in a panic. There are people in the way and they won’t move fast enough but I need to get back to the car ASAP.

I spend days sat on the sofa, as advised. I feel no better.

I get up and wash the dishes, chance the bed sheets and I feel it in my head. It’s there all the time ready to hit me bad when I walk longer than 5 minutes at a time.

I don’t even know what the point of this post is. I’m just venting, I guess. I feel utterly useless and I can’t shake this fear that I’ll never get better. No improvement after two weeks. None at all.

I finally have an appointment with the Ears, Nose and Throat specialist for the end of January. I had my medication changed yesterday so will hopefully see an improvement.

All I want is to be able to go to work, finish a shift, go to the gym and then come home and enjoy a glass of wine.

I never realised how lucky I was to be able to do those things.

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13 Comments

  • Reply Anca December 16, 2016 at 9:00 am

    Sounds terrible. I hope the new doctor will give you more details in January and that the new medication will help. It’s amazing how we take some things for granted without appreciating how nice is to have them.
    Hugs xx
    Anca recently posted…It’s beginning to look a lot like ChristmasMy Profile

  • Reply Izabel December 16, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    Uggghhh Corinne, that is just the pits. I hope with all my heart that the ENT specialist sorts it out quickly and you can have a half decent Christmas in between.

  • Reply Lucy Furneaux December 16, 2016 at 1:38 pm

    I’m so sorry you’re going through this Corinne. It’s so hard and frightening to be so out of control of your own body so I really hope that the new medication makes a difference and you’re back on your feet soon.
    Lx | Lightly We Go

  • Reply Caroline December 16, 2016 at 6:27 pm

    It sucks so much when your body decides to be a dickhead.
    Hope the specialist gets it all sorted – and quickly! X

  • Reply Sarah December 16, 2016 at 8:12 pm

    It’s crap, but hopefully once you’ve seen the ENT consultant you will get some answers and maybe a different treatment that will sort this out once and for all!

    Sarah 🙂
    Saloca in Wonderland
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  • Reply Kim Carberry December 16, 2016 at 10:10 pm

    Oh no. That sounds awful!
    I hope the change in medication helps and you feel better soon x
    Kim Carberry recently posted…A fantastic week of food. #WotWMy Profile

  • Reply Akaleistar December 17, 2016 at 2:45 am

    I’m so sorry! Talking about health issues online can be difficult, and not finding helpful doctors makes everything worse.
    Akaleistar recently posted…Moisturize Me: Fall Beauty EmptiesMy Profile

  • Reply Cat (@moreaboutcat) December 18, 2016 at 9:45 am

    I’m really sorry that you are experiencing this. I really do feel your pain. A few years ago, I was minding my own business sat at work when suddenly the whole room started spinning. I felt really sick and disorientated and I somehow managed to get myself home. I was off for a week. I got back to work and felt fine for a while. Then it hit me a lot worse. I had to take lots of time off work and the vertigo was so intense that all I could do was lay in a dark room all day. No TV, laptop or phone as the screens made it worse. To cut what is a very long story short, I had to wait over a year to see an ENT specialist. My original doctor diagnosed Labyrinthitis but the specialist determined it was in fact Vestibular Migraines. He gave me loads of information on how to avoid it, how to behave when bouts did come on (basically to lay in a dark room!) and since that meeting, any experiences of vertigo I’ve had have been minor.

    I just want to say that it *does* get better. Whilst I don’t know the true extent that you are suffering, especially comparatively to how I did, but seeing an ENT is definitely a big step in the right direction. If you need anyone to talk to, I can definitely relate. x
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    • Reply Corinne December 20, 2016 at 4:34 pm

      Sorry to hear you’ve been though this! I thankfully havent had to wait that long for an appointment, though it did take a year for them to refer me. I’m thinking it’s not an ear infection as I have it often, it’s just usually mild.

      • Reply Cat (@moreaboutcat) December 26, 2016 at 4:43 pm

        It always takes a long time to see a specialist which is really annoying as I don’t know about you, but I found vertigo really scary to experience. Hope you are on the mend now x
        Cat (@moreaboutcat) recently posted…Happy Christmas (Eve)!My Profile

  • Reply Lucy December 19, 2016 at 9:43 am

    I’m sure you found this post incredibly hard to write, but it’s an important thing to share. I often worry about some of the things I write but blogging is about sharing your life not just the best bits. Vertigo sounds vile and hard going especially as you say you have an active job and life. Hopefully with a referral to ENT they can offer you some help and advice to make the symptoms easier. Health is the most important thing and we all take it for granted till it plays up. Take care Lucy x
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  • Reply Ela December 27, 2016 at 11:41 pm

    I’m so sorry you have to go through that, dear. I hope it gets better. XOXO

  • Reply Tamsin | Eco Fluffy Mama July 18, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    Vertigo is truly debilitating. My medications often don’t work for it which sucks. My super low bp also contributes to the symptoms. Sorry you’re suffering so much x

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