Monday, August 24, 2009

A Dizzy Confused State of Mind

Merriam-Webster's dictionary defines vertigo as: a.) a sensation of motion in which the individual or the individual's surroundings seem to whirl dizzily b.) a dizzy confused state of mind. I define mild vertigo as that feeling you get when you've had one too many cocktails and you need just a teensy bit of help walking straight.

You don't even want to hear about moderate to severe vertigo. Let's just say it resembles the feeling you might get after drinking all night at a band party in college (not that I would know, I'm just speculating here). Or it could also be described as that feeling you get after riding one of those cups and saucers rides at Disney, or one of those rides at the fair that uses centrifugal force to keep you slammed back against the back of the ride so you don't go flying off into space. Anyway you slice it, it is NOT GOOD.

However, vertigo doesn't just come after drinking one too many cocktails with the girls and having an overall good time, or after making a very poor decision to climb up on that ride at the fair. No, for me vertigo comes with sinus problems, or after a week or two of not getting enough sleep, or when I move my head a certain way, or do something stupid like get on a kiddy ride at the fair, or just whenever the heck it wants to show up and leave me feeling slightly drunk (without the benefit of cocktails) and just a tad bit cranky for three to four days, before it decides to slink off and invade some other poor unsuspecting soul's brain.

I've been diagnosed with sinus issues. I've been diagnosed with Benign Positional Vertigo. I've even been diagnosed with Meniere's Disease (which I am pretty sure that I do not have, seeing as how I do not have horrible, debilitating, life-altering vertigo that some people have, God bless them.) So basically, they don't know why I have vertigo, nor do they know how to stop it. It's not a huge deal, since I only get it a few times a year. But while it's here rolling around in my brain, I feel icky and out of sorts, like I'm going to fall down every time I bend down to tie somebody's shoe. I hate icky and out of sorts.

The doctor who diagnosed me with Meniere's said that I should go on a low-salt diet, because Meniere's (which I'm convinced I do not have) may or may not be caused by excess fluid in the inner ear somewhere and going on a low-salt diet may or may not help it. Okay? When I told the doctor that a low-salt diet sounded like a lot of work for something that may or may not help. He said it wasn't hard at all and that I would probably lose 10 pounds and love it, and he just knew that I wouldn't want to take a water pill every day (all said while he was walking out the door of the exam room).

Well, lets just refer to him as Dr. Lying McLiar and go to his house and see what his salt intake is, because I guarantee you it is four times what he told me I should consume. Anyone ever tried low-salt ketchup? It's disgusting. And how would he know whether or not I want to take medicine without actually asking me? And couldn't I just take the water pill when I feel the vertigo coming on? As far as the comment about my weight goes, bite me! My completely average weight for my height is none of his Ear, Nose and Throat business.

Did I mention there really is no good medicine for vertigo? There is an anti-dizzy medicine which I think is basically Benadryl, and the only way it works is to knock you flat on your back asleep, so you don't feel the dizzy. Exactly how am I supposed to take care of three kids when I am prostrate in the bed? The other option is the "water pill" which Dr. Lying McLiar thinks I don't want to take, and I'm not convinced would work anyway. (Don't worry. If I want to take the water pill, I can certainly get it. I know of a Dr. Feelgood that would prescribe it and also any other drug I might think I need. Scary! But that is a post for a day called "Never" because I really do not want to get sued.)

I am currently having a bought of vertigo, and I'm a little Cranky McCranky myself. But I'm guessing you already knew that by now, right? Grrrr!


  1. Vicki (Mama's cousin...remember her?) was having bouts with vertigo. She had her ears flushed out at the doctor's office and she hasn't had a problem since then. Wonder if that would help you too?

  2. Okay, I'm a bit slow on my reading duties. However, the first thing that came to mind? What is vertigo? Vertigo is basically your brain not knowing where you are at. "Are you slightly forward? Are you a bit lopsided? Should I make the legs move so that we all move back and don't topple over?"

    I hear this in my head, and figured it was worth sharing. If you are having vertigo, it's because you don't know where you're at. Kids are going to school. Schedules are changing.

    Once you figure out where you are, it should settle back down again.

    Of course, ear-flushing, or even a good candling (you can get them at a GNC store) could do the trick. Just felt I needed to share my gut reaction on that one.