In the 3+ year history of this blog, there has never been a three-week hiatus. I didn’t plan on this last one. I simply couldn’t look at the screen. Those of you who hang with me on Facebook know I’ve been fighting vertigo, and it turns out it’s a lot more common than I thought.
What do I mean by “vertigo?”
Vertigo is when you feel like you’re rotating, rolling and spinning, even when you’re still. Combine this with some walking and wicked motion sickness and you have one wildly unhappy Jenny.
What the heck causes it?
The inner ear can become inflamed because of illness, or in my case, a bad allergy attack.
Also, for those of us over 40, the small crystals or stones found normally within the inner ear tend to become more easily displaced and cause irritation to the cilia of the inner ear’s semicircular canals, leading to vertigo.
Note: When your mom says “you have rocks in your head,” you really DO. Who knew, right?
Also, according to the auditory people? 50 percent of people are at risk to develop vertigo in their lifetime. My doc handed me a six-page leaflet on “benign paroxysmal positional vertigo” (BPPV) and said he sees it several times a year.
How do you get rid of it?
The first few days I had it, I’d have said the only way to calm it down was to remain perfectly still. I spent those days looking at my phone for short periods with my head tilted and one eye closed.
But then I went to an auditory and balance center for testing and they put me in contraptions like the ones you see above. The great thing is, I found out my hearing is normal. The downside is all that jostling made everything worse.
Does anything help?
The night of the testing, my husband and I decided to take my sister-in-law’s advice (she’s a PT) and try the “Foster Half-Somersault Maneuver.” (Stop laughing.)
The problem for me was getting from my bed to the living room where I had room for the Hubs to help me do it. Every time I walked from the bed to the bathroom and back, I hurled. Every time I walked to the kitchen to eat was the same story. Finally, the Hubs let me close my eyes and hang onto his belt to slowly get to the living room.
It took five tries for the Foster maneuver to work for me that first time, and I lost my stomach in between everyone one of them. But that kept the vertigo away for a day or so, which was AWESOME.
Below is a video of THE MOVE. Without it, I promise you I would still be hurling every time I walked.
Cute, eh? I’ve done this thing in most of the rooms at my house, my backseat and the conference room at work. Everyone in my circle now knows what I mean when I say, “I had to do the move.” Really, it’s kind of sad.
You see, this stupid vertigo comes back. I actually fear it more than blood clots since I KNOW what causes those. As far as what causes the spins? I’ve got nothing.
But at least I know if I’m patient, and roll around on the floor long enough, it will eventually go away. For a while.
Have you, or anyone close to you, ever experienced vertigo? How long did it last, and what made it go away? Enquiring minds are dying to know these things here at More Cowbell!