An interesting comment was sent by Patty M. on August 10 2014: Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine, Mount Sinai, have developed a new successful treatment. For more information see here and here.
Please read this comment submitted by TStone on February 21, 2015 on how to possibly treat MdDS yourself. Any feedback on how it worked for you welcome!
Whereas many people will briefly experience reverse sea sickness (or drunken sailor syndrome) when they disembark, for a small minority these symptoms can be severe and prolonged. This is known as mal de debarquement syndrome (MdDS, disembarkment syndrome).
MdDS is relatively rare, but is extremely distressing and debilitating for those who suffer from it. It occurs because the brain, having adjusted to the movement of the ship as normal, now finds the sensations of being on firm land unfamiliar and abnormal. Everything feels too stable, leading to dizziness and uncontrollable lurching feelings. Sufferers tell me that they feel like they are constantly walking on a trampoline, and they have to struggle to keep their balance. In some cases there are also nausea and a continuous rocking sensation. The only way to get relief from these symptoms is to go back on a boat, or travel by car or bus.
Mal de Debarquement Syndrome often lasts several weeks, but can last months or even years. Medically MdDS is considered to be a 'self-limiting' - in other words temporary - condition, however the symptoms are likely to become more severe and longer lasting with each subsequent trip on a boat (or sometimes plane). A friend who suffered the symptoms of MdDS for around a week after a two-week cruise several years ago, recently had MdDS for well over a month after another similar cruise.
A video to encourage awareness and learn about what it's like to live with MdDS.
It is impossible to predict whether you will suffer from disembarkment syndrome after a cruise or voyage, although those who have little problem adjusting to the motion of the sea seem to be more susceptible. To try to prevent MdDS it is a good idea to start your sea sickness precautions a couple of days before you board, and then continue them for a few days after returning to land - for example if you are taking ginger, start to take it before you board and continue the same dose throughout your trip and for a few days after disembarking. The same can apply to any medications that you may be taking, although do speak to your doctor first.
If you do suffer MdDS symptoms then it is worth trying the remedies, treatments and medications used for sea sickness and other forms of motion sickness (see this overview of the options available). Many people, however, report that they don't do much to help. To make matters worse, many doctors know very little about MdDS.
There are a number of websites and support groups online:
A friend told me to take Black Cohosh, Valerian Root and Gingko Biloba and within a week of taking them, I was normal. The stuff worked. I have 42 animals, a full time job and 92 acres to mow and I was scared to death to get on my Commercial mower for fear I'd fall off into a ravine.
Those three herbs were a Godsend and when I saw the Medical Mysteries show on TV I knew I had to tell someone what worked for me. It only took a few days, and once the MdDS was gone it was gone. I haven't had to take the herbs again since.
I'm sharing this so that others can at least try it and see if it helps. To my knowledge there are no side effects to any of these herbs and I just got well. I thank God for the gift of balance. It's funny what you can become grateful for.
How much of each of the Herbs did you take?
Lucy @ Motion-Sickness-Guru.com replies:
Hi K, I contacted Margo to ask similar questions and this is what she replied:
My Disembarkment Syndrome is back, only slightly, but I'm laying in bed and feeling the room start to spin while I'm not doing anything, just lying on my back in bed, and that's the first sign of it. If I tilt my head back it feels like when I was young and drank too much and the room spins. It's not yet as bad as it was before, but I'm not going to wait that long and am starting with the remedy now.
I take them just each just like the bottle recommends: Valerian root, three capsules 30 minutes before bedtime. My thoughts about this is, Valerian Root helps you sleep and if you achieve REM sleep your body heals in REM and the Valerian helps you achieve REM sleep.
Ginkgo Biloba 120mg once a day. Ginkgo Biloba increases blood flow, that's why it helps people whose brains are aging. Anytime more oxygenated blood cells can feed and regenerate cells it heals them. If REM sleep is achieved, then increased blood flow, it increases healing while you're basically shut down, like turning off a cell phone and putting it on a battery charger. Black Cohosh one pill three times a day. I'm not sure what it does, but it got me normal with no side effects.
I did the research on everything before taking it and found little info on the Black Cohosh, so and was cautious with it to assure I wouldn't have an allergic reaction.
I heartily recommend anyone considering any of these herbs try each, one at a time and make themselves aware that they don't have an allergic reaction to any of them and if they do they'll know which one they are reacting to. I slept well, I healed and now when I can feel it coming on, I can just take it again for about a week. I just quit taking it when my symptoms subsided. Not sure why it's back, but I feel confident that it will solve the issue again. I don't want to be falling over in the barn lot anymore anyway.
I hope this helps. Margo
I think I have determined what, at least my, Disembarkment Syndrome is being caused by, by concentrating on when it actually appears for me. I have 102 acres and 60 of them must be mowed to keep grass for my horses. I pass the time on my mower by downloading books on tape and use earbuds to listen to them for sometimes 6 hours at a time on my IPod. When I insert the earbuds, they put pressure on the small bones inside my ears. Our inner ear is where we derive balance control. Anyone who's had an inner ear infection has stumbled around when they've had one, due to swelling, causing misalignment. I think, at least some of us, are experiencing our issues by pushing the earbuds in, which pressures the tiny bones out of their proper alignment, thereby causing this fine balance within the ear to be pushed out of level. I suggest simply, ask anyone who currently uses earbuds to stop their use completely for a month and see if their body heals and rights itself and the small bones inside the ear don't shift back to level again. I think my personal remedy sped up my ear's recovery, as my balance is almost normal again. I'd encourage those, with this condition, who use earbuds, to stop completely and replace them with common headphones again, to keep from applying undo pressure onto these delicate bones and causing their misalignment and the malfunction of our inner ear's delicate function.
I'd love to know how many ailing people use earbuds. It may be like anything else, some people have a susceptibility with just one hour's use or it could take 6 hours a day for 6 days for another's inner ears to malfunction. Omitting earbuds for a month might give us all a clue if these are too dangerous to be used, and it could cause the manufacturer to modify them, to make them more suited to the delicacy of these bones within our inner ear.
I hope it's as simple as that. Should this be the culprit, I'd love for someone to get the word out, as there are lots of folks using earbuds and if this is the problem, some may have already done too much damage and will be unable to recover and heal their inner ear bones back to their normal position. That would be sad, since this illness effects you, even while you are asleep.
Have a blessed weekend...
So, my family dr. properly diagnosed me and there it sat. I had difficulty "really" concentrating on anything because of the nagging sensation and it seemed to get worse when I was tired.
SO, for 2+ years I walked around in this state. Couldn't trust myself on any type of ladder either. Now, I am going to tell you what age I was when all this happened as it is relevant later. I was about 47 yrs old. I also need to disclose some other SEEMINGLY irrelevant data. I've been to TWO concerts in my life. One, when I was about 17, at which point I decided I didn't LIKE going to concerts and then, the other I attended when I was 49yrs old. WHY would a 49 yr old, who doesn't like concerts, BE at a rock concert at the age of 49 you ask? Well, when he has a 16yr old daughter who he won't let go to a concert unsupervised, that's why.
The group, Shinedown (not relevant other than knowing it wasn't a classsic symphony type of cure). The seating, wasn't "seating". It was standing (MAY have been relevant in making my brain continue to have to balance myself). I believe the standing is affectionately referred to as a "mosh pit". Hope you don't bruise easily. Anyway, 2 hours later, we walked out of this concert and my ears were RINGING LOUDLY. So loudly, that when my daughter spoke to me it was like how, in the movies, what a soldier would hear from his partner right after a bomb would go off and all he would hear is the SOUND of a voice but not the actual words they were saying.
The next morning, I woke up and the rocking sensation was simply GONE along with the loud ringing I went to bed with. The realization of WHY things felt different didn't hit me until I had been up for a while.
I put two and two together and realized what had happened.
I immediately went to all the websites I had uncovered when looking for a cure to get the word out and posted my cure experience. I wanted to help other people but not a single response from anyone or site administrators. Not even to ask any follow up questions. So much for ".org" sites. Maybe there's more money in being part of the problem than in the cure. Over the years, I came across multiple "band aid" projects like "vibration pads", for example. All of them seemed to deal with the SYMPTOMS of MdDS but NOT the cause.
What I experienced was a "sensory reset" - plain and simple, and it addressed the CAUSE via sensory overload and recalibration. I can't be cured twice, so I'm left to wonder if something as simple as loud headsets for 2 hours (same as concert time) could do the same thing. But my conclusion is that it needs to be something loud and for a significant duration of time that the brain tries to again, learn to compensate for it JUST as it compensated to create the problem in the first place.
So, I went in a cruise on January 6... and now I have it back again. I'm so worried, especially because the sites say that the subsequent times last longer. So I assure you I will try your formula, because I know what it's like to be sick for years. Willing to do anything to cure it.
I am 74 and when I was in high school I belonged to Mariner Scouts and we would go out on a boat and when I would get back on land a few hours later, walking on land I was so unsteady. It never seemed to go away. At times it was worse - like I was rocking, and waves would be worse at times.
I keep going because I thought sometime odd was going on. Finally I told my doctor. I had lots of hearing tests, rotating tests, MRI, just about everthing you could think of. All were normal. Finally she sent me to a neurolgist and he knew what was wrong, but nothing much can be done about it, live with it!!
Riding in a car does not help me, it is worse. I have bad days and worse days. It is nice to hear I am not alone. My mdds has lasted for years and years. Just was at my doctor and she knows very little about it, but says I will have it the rest of my life. I just wanted to know if anyone had migrane headaches? I also had them since I was 6 yrs old.
I hope some doctor would look into a cure. Please let me know if anyone hears any news on a cure.
Blessings to each one of you. Nan
Well, eleven years is a long time and I forgot about it. I just returned from my second cruise in my lifetime and IT'S BACK!!! Aye Yai Yai! I'm so mad at myself. My brain is floating back and forth in my head, I feel drawn to the ground, am fatigued, can't get much done... etc. etc. etc.
How in the world do you absolutely know for sure if you have this - IF you have NOT been on any travel, plane, boat-- ?
Anyway, back to the mosh pit theory: though I am 48 years old, I still like the type of music that inspires mosh pits at concerts and have been in mosh pits off and on for over 25 years. If DaveK's cure was related to the concert (and not just a coincidence), then I think the most likely explanation is the type of physical activity that occurs in a mosh pit. It sounds like DaveK was not actually slam dancing. It sounds more like he was standing in a crowd where mosh pits were probably spontaneously forming and dissolving. The effect on a passive participant would be the need to balance against people pushing, sometime aggressively, from different directions and quite often unpredictably. I can image that action for two hours could prompt the balance circuitry in the brain to "reset" as DaveK described it. The loud music may have helped, but I doubt loud music alone would have any effect.
I have had all of the symptoms of Disembarkment Syndrome for over a year now including not being able to drive and or ride a bike without experiencing the symptoms very bad. I get my worse symptoms when I walk and am spacey and kind of floating when I am still, sitting or laying down. I have had all of the usual tests that have all come back normal. I did not take a cruise or plane flight when all of this came on!!?? Is it possible to have all the symptoms of this syndrome without taking a cruise or flight????
I still had the symptoms of walking on a sponge plus an up-and-down feeling while sitting or lying down in March. In March I went on a flight to Miami from the UK then a 11 night cruise (rough waters) plus a turbulent 8 hour flight back home. I thought I would be really suffering when I got back, but all the symptoms have completely disappeared. So now I am wondering if going on a turbulent flight or cruise again actually resets the brain. No symptoms at all now. It's really strange. Thought I would share it with you.
I've suffered with this for many many years and hate it. The awful tiredness, falling, banging myself, and the moving of everything around.
Dee, the difference is that with vertigo etc. the room spins, and with MdDS it feels like the floor is coming up to meet you, e.g. like trying to walk on a turbulent airplane.
I've had many episodes and this illness is really miserable. One thing that has helped me is to use eardrops/oil to clean out my ears the week before a long journey. I actually went on a train journey last week and didn't have to have any time off work. I don't know if my ears were filled with wax or it's in my mind but it's really helped loads.
My doctor referred me to an ENT this time and he diagnosed me with MdDS and basically said there was nothing he could do. I was a mess. Tired, depressed, nauseous and no support from anyone because it's "all in your head". The symptoms finally went away and I stayed away from boats!
A year ago I went on a boat but loaded up on Dramamine first and the symptoms didn't come back. BUT then a few weeks ago I slept overnight on a friend's boat (I didn't THINK that in dock would be as bad) and now the symptoms are back full force. No one really understands or has any sympathy and I can see myself falling apart again. I was thinking maybe this group had some advice?
If this does not go away then I will cancel it. I have never had motion sickness of any kind and have been around the water all of my life. I am hoping this is temporary. Good luck to everyone. I will repost if and when this goes away.
To prevent: I wore a magnetic bracelet on each wrist, I took a ginger capsule each day starting 2 weeks before the cruise and until 3 days after, exercised vigorously for 40 minutes or so in the gym almost every day of the cruise and if I started feeling headaches, like my head was trying to adapt to the ship, I moved around or shook/tapped my legs. I did my best to try not to adapt to the ship's motion and looked at the horizon when we were near the coast, as much as I could.
The result? I was fine. On the second day post cruise I felt a mild, pleasant rocking for a few hours but nothing like the 2 weeks of Hell I went through last time. I hope my suggestions work for others.
Has anyone here tried the Epley Manoeuvre to help??
Is this what the Mount Sinai hospital treatment is? I read the article but don't understand what / how to perform the Mt Sinai treatment...
Meclizine did nothing, and my GP gave me a referral to an ENT. The morning of my ENT appointment, now four weeks from our return from the cruise, I had a severe vertigo attack. I couldn't move without the whole room spinning and tipping. I had nausea and cold sweats. Somehow I made it to the bed. It got worse quickly, I couldn't even move my eyes without the symptoms raging. I felt like I had been poisoned. My husband called the paramedics and after they asked a lot of questions and took a lot of readings they assisted me in an agonizing move from bed to wheelchair to gurney to truck. Then an equally agonizing ride to the emergency room. It wasn't the bumps that bothered me so much as the swaying turns. At the hospital, they gave me meclizine and valium, and within an hour or so I was better. Went home and woke up the next morning and it was all gone. It hasn't returned since. Finally made it to the ENT and he told me what it was.
Before I got on the boat to come back the following day, I could still feel that rocking motion while standing. It's been 3 days that I've been back and I still feel like I'm on that boat. I'm going to see a doctor today because I think I have some sort of ear infection and from what I understand, your balance comes from your inner ear. My ears get itchy at times and my earwax has this really foul smell. When I sit, my body keeps swaying from side to side. I can't imagine myself living like this for years and hope it goes away soon. I have been on a few 3-4 night cruises in my life and remember having the same problem that lasted 4-7 days.
I find my symptoms are much worse when I am at work. I work on a computer with fluorescent lighting. Any insight on if this could be what I have is appreciated! I just want answers! According to the ENT he does not think it is inner ear related and my MRI was perfect. Thanks!
So here I am 6 years later after a 5 night cruise, swaying... but functioning... sitting here at my desk swaying... but this isn't nearly as bad so I am hoping and praying that it will subside. From what I read, the last time I was at a level 10... this time I am 3-4.
Now, of course, we're trying to find ways to cure her. In the States they're further than here, at least they're working on a treatment (Mt Sinai). I read something about Australia too. Of course, for us it might not be smart to get on a plane for ten hours or more ;-)
So all we can do is try self-medicating and find out how many people in The Netherlands have this. Because I'm sure the number is much bigger, as so many docters here have never heard of this and many people with the symptoms are just left to their own devices.
Good to read about other cases. We'll check this blog regularly in our search for a remedy.
Thank you so much to both of you for passing along this info. I got off a cruise 7 weeks ago and just can't imagine this going on and on. Good luck to everyone affected by MdDS. I will post with updates as I improve!!!
I feel SO much better! I did the Fakuda Step Test and was truly surprised to be over 45degrees different. I bought the APP, did the exercise with some questionable positive results. I repeated it maybe an hour later. Within 3 hours I feel the best I have felt in 11 days! No nausea, no dizziness, my brain feels clear and I can concentrate. I repeated the Fakuda and had ZERO turning. I was sceptical, but am now a true believer. THANK YOU ALL for all of your input!
Recently, we have been experimenting with the OKN stripes app on our TV (assuming the bigger the picture the better). The marching test suggested Left, so we have done stripes to the Right. 5 second head tilt for a complete cycle (thought to be the average?), left to right. We have now tried both directions of stripes, as there is no clear indication of improvement or deterioration? 3 x 5 min sessions per day x 5 days one way. After reading the Mount Sinai paper (continuously), it seems the two readings that one hopes to understand about a patient is the perceived direction that one feels and the frequency of bobbing or swaying/rocking. As far as movement goes (swaying or bobbing or rocking) I'm not too sure of how to calculate. I can however tell what I have observed. Firstly, my partner constantly nods her head. Sometimes rapidly. Around 1 sec per nod. if she doesn't the disorientation gets worse. Secondly, when standing still eyes closed her movement back and forward (trying to balance) is often long and elongated (great displacement). As long as times go maybe 5 - 12 seconds for a complete cycle, sometimes longer. So, direction? Frequency? We will of course keep trying this Stripes idea, as it appears to hold some weight. If anyone has had similar observations or a better understanding of the science and interpretation we would be all ears.
Thanks. Regards Rob
I have had MDDS since 2007. Originally started around the time I had an allergic reaction to a laundry water softener, and having to take 150mg of antihistamine (I also have urticaria). It has become less of a problem over the years, I don't hug walls just to walk about now, I'm not constantly tired and I can use knives without fear of suddenly stabbing myself in the face (or something weird). I used to travel by air a lot but not in 2006/7 so unconnected. I hadn't been on a boat in over a decade so not related to that. I don't do concerts. I can drive no worries, but have issues being a passenger. I have issues walking about (too much information or movement, I hate food shopping or closely packed clothes shops). I have been to see 2 ENT specialists both treated me like a hypochondriac. I diagnosed myself after being told there was nothing wrong with me and the 3rd time I saw one of the specialists he just agreed with me and then quoted verbatim the first website he'd come across the night before. I've not been back to see that waste of air.
Nothing really makes it better, but I find doing lots of sports helps to some degree, it makes it bearable and sometimes ignorable. But sport can also make it worse, colds make it worse, TV, flashing lights (including through trees, I'm very light sensitive and often have to wear shades inside and look like a moron), being thirsty, slightly hungry (I eat every 2 hours to avoid this!), too hot (anything over 18C), tired, or overdone the exercise (hiits, or just too many squats), stressed, having a cold, can all make it worse.
I find I get more colds than I used to and they last longer (weeks rather than a week at most). The cures that most doctors (or anyone who says they've had labyrinthitis I did this and it cured it have you tried it? ugh drives me nuts) tell me to try make me worse, no matter how long/often I try it for. I have read that it could be a form of migraine and that menstruation could be one cause (I do get period migraines). However, I started getting these years after the MDDS appeared.
I'm wondering if there is no one cure because there is no one cause. As with most 'cures', what works for one person won't work for someone else because it was triggered by one thing that did particular damage to that one person, and epigenetics making us all unique means that even if another person had the exact same circumstances causing MDDs the same cure wouldn't work. Trial and error I think is the best way, don't just listen to the doctors without researching it yourself, you are the expert here not them, it's your body, they only hear your description of what you are feeling.
Keeping active helped too. I am as foggy as before and the panic attacks have stopped since my body has adapted to its balance confusion. I was also diagnosed with a problem with my left eye. Prism glasses help with the annoying rich visual patterned environments like the mall.
I will keep everyone posted if I go to see Dr. Dai. Also consider Dr. Staab at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. Blessings to all!!
Anecdotal evidence would indicate this has to be hormone related, especially for women. We're mostly middle-aged and for those who aren't, being pregnant seems to put it in remission. Here's a question for the middle-aged women: did you have hot flashes BEFORE the cruise and did you have hot flashes AFTER?
I find I don't get near as many as I did BEFORE the cruise. Maybe this crap replaces hot flashes and, if so, maybe we need treatment for hot flashes as our own experiment. As we know, being a woman with a crazy syndrome will take years to be addressed. It's a man's world.
So... Off to the doctor next week (GP)... Wish me luck!
Anyway, I didn't really notice the MdDS symptoms until returning home to NYC from the trip. Part of that is because I had a drink in my hand for most of the vacation, and as many of us know, alcohol can greatly reduce or dull the symptoms. (Too bad it's not a cure!)
I thought I just had "land legs" or "sea legs" or whatever, and was not too concerned until a couple of days went by and the symptoms did not go away. I feel the ground surging under my feet, or the feeling of standing in a small boat on water. If I close my eyes my balance goes pretty fast. It is a weaving or pulsing or someone said "magnetic" pulling feeling, and it doesn't really have a direction, it seems random and all over the place. Tilting my head down is bad, reaching for items on a low shelf, or tying my shoes. I was calling it "vertigo", because I had never heard of Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS).
So, about 2 weeks after the trip I did some internet research and came across Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV). This type of vertigo apparently can come about when some crystals come loose in part of your inner ear, and can be fixed by a simple head roll (the Epley Maneuver) performed by a doctor, chiropractor, or even a physical therapist. So I went to a chiropractor who knew all about the Dix-Hallpike test, which is used to identify BPPV by observing latency of eye movement (nystagmus) following head roll, and he also had performed the Epley maneuver on other patients with success. Dix-Hallpike was negative, but we did the Epley maneuver on two separate occasions because it seemed harmless enough. Nothing, no effect.
Oh, I forgot to mention that I have played drums most of my life (not since getting MdDS) and I have had tinnitus (persistent ringing in the ears) for over 10 years.
So, my next step was to go to a neurology clinic. The first Neurotologist did the Dix-Hallpike test and ruled out BPPV. To be continued... [see below]
I applied to the clinic, filling out a lengthy questionnaire. I was accepted in mid December, and was able to go for the 5 day treatment in mid-January (5 months ago). You can read elsewhere about the "spinning room" (google Timothy Hain MdDS - he has a clinic in Chicago) and the various tests that they do before trying out different directions, speeds and durations of visual stimuli, mostly black and white stripes on the wall. Bottom line: watching the stripes seemed to have an effect, sometimes positive, sometimes negative, depending on direction, speed, etc., but we never seemed to nail onto the right pattern or frequency. But I think they are onto something for sure. I am going to go back this summer and try again.
Previously, last year, I had suffered a severed balance disordered for about 5 months back in May 2015. It began once I returned home from a from a 4 day cruise. I sought help from my primary care, VA doctor, ENT doctor and one other MD. They all just shrugged their shoulders, said that they never heard of the problems I was experiencing and ignored my complaints. I was practically on my own with this. I also saw my chiropractor, at least he tried. But I continued swaying side to side and bobbing back and forth. Other problems were that I could not watch TV or looked at a computer screen for more than 5 minutes. Reading was even worse. Everything in front of me would start swaying or bobbing, it was horrible. The only remedy that would help, as crazy as it may sound - was to drive my car! For months I had researched my symptoms and everything I read pointed to MdDS. After about five months of suffering with these nauseating symptoms it finally subsided. Was it due to the chiropractor helping me? Maybe, but I cannot say for sure. Everything I had read told me to stay away from boats of any kind, flying, elevators, escalators or even going to the beach. Well as you can see, I didn't listen. From now on before I go on vacation I will pre-set an appointment with Dr. Tang for when I return from vacationing near water, flying or anything that starts my world swaying or bobbing.
I am so glad this helped me. Just wanted to share my story. Dr. Tang made no promises when I first met him. He is just a very humble doctor from China who was able to help me.
I have a question for those who have had remission after a few weeks or months - did it go away suddenly? Like you woke up one morning and bam, it's gone? Or was it a gradual fading of the symptoms?
I'm wondering at this stage what the best way to handle this will be, since my doctors didn't even know what it was and just started Googling the same stuff I'd already looked at. Shall I try and ask for some medication or just ride it out?
So I just did this intuitively, right no good, left yes. And I can feel all sorts of realignment going on in my ears and sinuses wow! Crazy!
Things I have learned: I feel like some days are worse than others. I have this feeling of bobbing up and down all the time. Some days it feels like I am on a high wave and some days a little wave but still there. When I walk it is as if I am on a trampoline and trying to keep my balance. I keep going though. I decided not to just sit this out but try to use humor when I can. I tell everyone that who else can take a free boat ride all day and some of the night? Keep smiling, know you are not alone and never ever give up searching for what can help you. Like others I have been to my doctor, chiropractor, ENT specialist and now I have just been sent to my town's Physical Therapy department. My PT checked me for Bvvp but I do not have that. He has heard of MdDs in his classes and told me he is going to try to learn along the way on what works best to get this stopped. I have copied and pasted in a long note - things that we are going to try. Prayers: that something helps but if not, I will not let this stop my life. I will be stronger because of this. At least I am not in terrible pain except from some headaches and not sick to the point I live in my bathroom either. Keep your faith. I will let you know if we find something to stop this also:)
I was fine until 23 February this year, when Storm Doris hit the UK. I was in work and my building was shaking quite a bit. In the afternoon I started feeling dizzy, and I'm still feeling it over six weeks later. It affected me much worse this time and I've been terrified that this time it's here to stay. I'm feeling better mentally now but there is no difference in symptoms really. It seems a bit worse than last time. I have a constant kind of lightheaded feeling and when I walk my legs feel very heavy and kind of feels like they're rocking.
It doesn't stop me from doing anything but it is very annoying and I'm trying to decide whether to just give a bit longer (as I believe relapses tend to last longer than the initial episode), or try to get a referral and a diagnosis. I know that there is a man in Sheffield called Chris Bowes who trained with Dr Dai in Mount Sinai and offers the same treatment, so I may end up giving that a go if it doesn't go away. This time I've tried Stemetil and Serc (not for very long though) and they made no difference. I'm also on Citalopram 20mg as I was very anxious and I'm taking vitamin D/multivitamins. I may try the valerian root/ginkgo biloba/black cohosh suggestion or see if I can be put on a different antidepressant. This just needs to go!
Twenty years later, almost every time I go windsurfing, I experience something similar: when OFF the water, for a day or so, everything feels like it's gently rocking, no nausea though. Something I learned to live with, I always assumed it's what sailors meant by "getting your land legs back."
My husband informs me that I now look like I might be returning to "the land of the living" & am now not paper sheet white. I still have a bit of an internal upward swell motion, fuggy head & pressure around my eye sockets but feel so much improved I thought I should share this with you & offer some hope for those who felt as awful as I have in the last 48 hours. Today, I'm aiming for some fresh air & hopefully a bit more solid food !! It could be that my symptoms may have naturally alleviated during the time passed between now & Disembarkation, but as ill as I felt, I could not run the risk & was willing to try all suggestions to make progress. So, thanks again for the advice & support, without which I would have been clueless & possibly now desperate!!!
Thank the Lord for Holland & Barrett too in the UK (plus, the penny sale!!). Good luck all xxx
- find a full length or half-body length mirror. You need to see your head, arms and upper torso.
- stretch your arms out in front of you like a zombie.
- tilt your head to one side about 20 degrees.
- while watching your own eyes/face, keeping your head tilted, march on the spot for a minute or two. You may need to experiment with marching speed to optimise the effect - I found marching slightly faster than my pseudo-swaying gave the best results.
- stop and repeat the marching in the mirror with head tilted 20 degrees to the other side.
You may need to repeat this a couple of times, but it really reduced my swaying symptoms for several hours and it becomes less and less noticeable with repeated sessions every few hours.
Hope someone else finds this helpful!
Since reading the differing options, I have tried quite successfully to combat the swaying and dizziness. Try standing on one foot and stare hard at a distance immovable object. Keep thinking of hitting the re-set button for your balance and whenever you are walking and feel the floor moving, lift your eyes and focus on something farther away that is stationary. It is helping, along with not using q-tips for the next while. Inner ear problems has always been a cause of balance issues, so it makes sense to leave the inner ear alone until things "right" themselves.
I am finding light exercise is also helpful, but going a lot slower as the ground keeps moving! I have only started to drive again after two weeks, and have to remind myself to move my head very slowly when shoulder checking. Any quick movement brings the dizziness right back. Hang in there folks and keep finding that stationary object to focus on. It is helping a lot!
Does research suggest exercise such as running helps or hinders recovery? And what are others' experiences?
Thanks in anticipation.
Vertigo is similar in symptoms to travel sickness or reverse-seasickness, only there is usually no relief when in a car or a boat. Vertigo can be mild or severe, be continuous or you can have episodes. It can be that you have an episode for 30 minutes or a few hours but also a few days or weeks continuously, though even during an episode it doesn't be the same level of bad through the whole episode.
I have vertigo myself and I am now 30 years old and female. My vertigo is most likely caused by an hereditary inner-ear problem (my mother has it as well). There is a balance organ in both your ears which is also part of the problem with any kind of motion sickness. My inner-ear problem causes hearing problems and mild tinnitus and also balance issues, dizzyness and nausea, in other words vertigo. Sometimes I see the world spin a bit and if I feel like that I often lose my balance. I will look like I am drunk when walking or moving and need to watch out to not get hurt. It can also be that I don't necessarily see the world spin but that as soon as I move my body or even my head that I get really dizzy and feel really weird, etc. It is a degree less bad because it is less bad when I sit still and don't move my head. There is also a degree below that which is what I suffer from most often. I won't see the world spin and will be less dizzy but my digestive system seems to think that I a'm in a constant roller coaster or on a ship on rocky water. I can be dizzy with this or very little. It feels so weird when this happens and it makes me feel ill, though not as weird and ill as other worse stages.
There are days when I barely have any vertigo or maybe only later in the day when I am tired. I also have chronic fatigue syndrome so I tire easily and have a weak immune system. I know that my vertigo flares up when I am tired, exhausted, have pushed myself too hard, when I am stressed or have been stressed, when I get a cold or virus, etc. It happens or gets worse when you are not a 100%, when your immune system gets weaker or when you haven't been taking good care of yourself.
It can also worsen when you have been hearing sounds that are too loud for your ears, at least in my case, though that can depend on what is wrong with your ears and doesn't have to be true for everyone with vertigo. So be careful with in-ear headphones, loud music in general and construction sounds and things like concerts. It is better to use on-ear headphones. Also when doing construction, for example while drilling, wear ear protection. At a concert wear protective earbuds.
Know that the tubes of eustachius (if that is the correct spelling) can also wreak havoc for vertigo sufferers. There is fluid in those tubes and that is neccessary and functional. If the consistency of that fluid changes temporarily then vertigo can get worse. This can happen when you get too little fluids or too little or too much salt. This often happens during hot weather or after (intense) exercise but it can also happen for some people simply because they ate a salty snack like potato chips or because they drank less water than usual.
Vertigo can be tricky and also has causes in the ear but can probably also be a neurological problem or a problem with both a neurological and an ear cause.
There are often no easy cures but being healthy, happy and balanced does help. Eat and drink right, sleep well, manage stress, try natural remedies.
Myself I have been using Sea-Bands for years to combat the dizzyness and nausea and they work really well 😁! They won't cure me but they make it livable most days. I also use them for motion sickness and when I have a stomach bug. They can be used for any kind of dizziness and nausea. Because I have small wrists I prefer to use the wristbamds for children because they fit me more snugly and then they work better.
The sea bands can we worn when needed for short times but also for long times like days or weeks even. You can wear them when swimming or during a bath or shower. If I wear them when showering I take them off for a moment to wash them well before putting them back on.
You can wash them by hand like the manufacturer suggests but I have also washed in the washing machine on 30, 40 or 60 degrees celsius without problem. Just be sure to wash them in a wash bag.
Another tip when I feel ill and my vertigo is getting worse, is too take more vitamin C. I take them as 1000mg tablets and take 4 of those when I am starting to feel worse. And then 2 more every 2 hours or every few hours, to help my immune system.
I do take valerian root, I prefer them in drops from A. Vogel. I will try some of the other suggestions I have read here on this pages like the ginko biloba.
I think there isn't one cure for all since our bodies are all different, but with some mixing and matching I hope we can all feel at least better to some degree.
Btw I think this website could also benefit from a vertigo page, even though that isn't standard motion sickness, because it is similar and has similar symptoms and causes and it would greatly benefit people to read about it and know about it. I have seen several people here in the comments on this page that I believe might have vertigo.
I first got the symptoms noticeably after a trip to Florida, we went out snorkelling and then flew home that afternoon. I had the symptoms for the next three weeks or so and put it down to doing both in the same day.
Then I went on a two week sailing trip in Thailand and got it for another three weeks when I got home. There was a two night break in the middle of the trip on land and I was practically begging to be let back on a boat!
Now I just sailed to France over the bank holiday weekend and it's come back this morning. :-( I'm expecting swaying, slight nausea, exhaustion and dizziness for the next week or so at least, so I don't know how long it would take for the various remedies being mentioned to take an effect, especially the herbal ones? Going to try the OKN strips first and see if it helps.
Thanks to everyone who has given their symptoms and remedies before, for helping me realise I'm not going mad, and that there may be ways to cure it. Although mine isn't chronic or persistent, I foresee a time when the three weeks could go on longer, so I might start to give these activities a wider berth - I was planning on going for my RYA yacht courses, but I think I need a different hobby!
I have noticed that first thing in the morning, especially after a good sleep with 5mg of valium, I have an hour or two with minimal/no swaying. Gets progressively difficult as the day goes on. Walking outdoors at a decent clip is easier than walking around in my small apartment. Interesting. I will try the app and above mentioned techniques.
Thanks for all the info. And knowing I am not alone is especially helpful.
Cinnarizine has helped to reduce the symptoms but I take this for a week before I travel and continue until at least a week after I am back home.
This is all very interesting. I am having the same issues which is causing a lot of anxiety at work. I was in the Navy for 5 years and did one 5 month deployment on a ship. When I finally got off I got this syndrome which went away shortly after. This was around 15 years ago. I never got sea sick. However since then, everytime I hear a fan that sounds like the ship, or I am in a building with confined spaces, I start to rock and sway. But, the thing that brought it all back and it won't go away is elevators. My new job has me go in elevators frequently and it has been devestating. Went I get home it is still with me. It makes it tough to want to do anything. I am hoping it goes away eventually. PS. don't ride elevators.