When Vertigo Strikes!
I blogged last week about my trip to Disneyland where I mentioned my struggle with vertigo. Since then, I’ve had several people ask me about my vertigo. Well, sit back, relax, and I’ll tell you all about it.
Let’s go back in time to March of 2016 when the the family and I went to Disney World/Universal. While usually moderate with rides, I went all out and rode everything. I even did some rides back-to-back, like Mission Space. (Talk about dumb!) I practically stumbled out of that ride like a bride-to-be in Vegas on her bachelorette party. I was dizzy and nauseous, but I did not have vertigo.
Fast forward to the weekend after that trip. I went to visit my parents and got a facial while there. The esthetician worked on my face, but then started massaging my neck and ears. I thought it strange to include an intense upper neck massage, but I went with it. And then, everything went to hell. I started feeling woozy. The room tilted. I got up to sit on a chair when BAM, I went full vertigo. I was spinning like an astronaut in zero gravity, spiraling at warp speed. It was AWFUL! After a few minutes, the room steadied yet the nausea and the feeling of being “off” remained.
Back in Houston, I saw my ENT right away and he diagnosed me with BPPV (benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.) Basically, this is vertigo brought on when the “crystals” in your ears get dislodged, sending your equilibrium into a tailspin. BPPV is triggered by trauma and/or head positioning. My ENT surmised that the rides combined with the massage prompted my episode. He told me to avoid rides, steer clear of cruises, and he cautioned me about going to the dentist and hairdresser. Just great, right? How the heck am I going to get my hair done!
My ENT put the crystals back in place with a head exercise called the Epley Maneuver. However, the darn things kept coming out! Yep, more vertigo. I went to a neurologist and had a brain MRI. Went to a balance center and had a VNG. (Look it up, it’s no fun.) All tests came back normal! Woohoo! Yet I continued and still continue to feel “off”. Talk about a bum deal.
Having been dealt this hand, I’ve decided to deal with it until it passes altogether. I’m careful with head movements, and I’m a master at performing the Epley Maneuver on myself. I even carry Bonine in my purse at all times, just in case. (Bonine is for dizziness). My hairdresser knows my situation, so I see him with wet hair. No shampoo for me. (Shoutout to Vinnie at Damsels and Blokes!) My dentist is accommodating as well. He recently did some work on me while standing so I could sit upright. And I just had my teeth cleaned a few days ago and the dental hygienist was on her feet. (Shoutout to Dr. Lankford and Cindy at Memorial Family Dental!)
I’ve improved a ton, and I hold on to the belief that I’ll eventually get back to my norm. This blip is not going to control me! I should probably put this in my next book, too. lol I’ll let you know if I do!
(This blog post can also be found at www.letsgrowgirl.com, where I'm a regular contributor.)