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Recoverandheal Recoverandheal

Head pressure, Brain fog, odd head sensation, feeling detached

Hi all, 

I decided to become a member and make a post here after reading the forums for quite a while, great site by the way. 

I am currently suffering with various symptoms and am in a bad way and just don't know where to turn any more so thought I would post here and see if anyone has any similar experiences or advice. 

So first of I am male and 26 years old. I have been suffering with the symptoms in the title pretty consistently for about 2 and a half years now. I used to have some relief from the symptoms for a day or 2 here and there or maybe a bit of relief for a few hours in the day but recently the symptoms are pretty much constant and I cannot shake them. 

I have an overall mild pressure feeling in the head, its not painful but is just very aggravating and feels really strange. I also have extreme brain fog with this and like a fuzzy head, there is a constant cloud over my brain and I never have any mental clarity or a clear head. My cognitive function is extremely poor now, my short term memory is non existent, its scarily bad. I often feel, detached from reality when the symptoms are bad and suffer from de-realisation, although I think this may be down to some anxiety and depression I experience when the symptoms run me down. I also get random sharp cramping pains in the head, they are quite painful but do not bother me so much as they only usually last a second or 2, it varies on how many I get of these each day but its usually less than 5. It often feels as though my brain is malfunctioning somehow and my cognitive function and senses are all out of whack, its hard to explain. There can sometimes be a build up of these symptoms throughout the day and by the night I can feel like I somehow how the flu without a fever? Like I have the head pressure, completely foggy headed, I feel super unwell, weak, sometimes even start feeling cold. Also have night sweats usually for about 4 or 5 days each month, there doesnt seem to be any sort of pattern to them that I can notice, so not sure if they are relevant. Another thing I have is ringing in ears which is mild but seems to have gotten worse recently if that sounds relevant at all. The main thing that gets me is the odd head pressure/sensation and the utterly life hindering brain fog, my brain feels like it is coated in a dark blanket constantly.

I do suffer from anxiety, I know many of these symptoms can be caused or made worse by these symptoms. I dont doubt that anxiety is a contributing factor and the way I think about they symptoms probably makes them worse but I have come a long long way with my anxiety, I have good control over it, I haven't had a panic attack in a couple of years, I manage to control most of my concious anxiety and stay in a positive mindset. No doubt I still have some subconscious anxiety underlying and I am working on that but I am not convinced this is the route cause of my symptoms. I am in therapy for my anxiety. I do not feel I will ever fully recover while I have these symptoms hanging over me though. 

I have been to the doctor about these symptoms, although I do think I struggle to explain them or put them across very well in the doctors office. I have have blood tests which are all normal. I saw a neurologist couple of years back when this started, had a CT scan which was normal, they put the stabbing pains down to icepick headaches and thought the other symptoms were probably made worse by my anx/depression. Since then I went away and have been on anti depressants etc with no improvement of symptoms. I have also had a few ECGs and a 24hr ECG as I have slow heart rate and low bp so thought maybe the symptoms could be down to low bp and lack of blood to the brain, doctors do not think think this is the case and all my results came back normal. I have recently been back to the neurologist who is referring me for an MRI although he said he is sure there is nothing sinister and thinks the symptoms are probably tension type headaches and made worse by and previous drug use, he only put it down to the drug use when i told him about it though so it seemed like a convenient diagnosis. I forgot to mention I used to take drugs on the weekends socially, cocaine, ketamine and ecstasy on different occasions for a couple of years, I have had periods where I have felt ok since taking these drugs and do not really think they are the cause, I was not an addict this was just one or 2 nights a month at the weekends. So I have an MRI coming up but the neuro thinks it will be clear and obviously I hope it is and I am looking for other answers. 

What could be causing these symptoms? Other than anxiety which i no can be a factor, but I have periods where my anxiety is pretty much non existent but these symptoms still build up out of nowhere and persist. I was thinking maybe some sort of allergy could be a possibility, I have tried cutting out gluten and lactose, this didn't seem to make much difference although I didn't stick to this for very long. I actually did a juice fast for 2 weeks with eating nothing other than fruit and veg juice put through a juicer to see if that would help but it didn't really give me any relief. Are there any other stomach issues that could cause this? I never have diarrhoea or constipation, my stools always float recently though, to the point of not being able to flush them, also whenever I have seen chance medicine doctors they check me out and say they think i have issues with digestion, i don't feel i have these issues but do wonder if there might be something in it. 

Could there be something going on with the blood vessels in my head? Could it be a spine/posture issue? Some sort of epilepsy or electrical activity in my brain? I just have no idea now and am desperate for some relief. If anyone has any ideas or advice I would really appreciate it. 

Oh just to add I am reasonably fit, I try go to the gym a few times a week and I do some weight lifting. I am a normal weight. I have been losing some weight recently which is a concern but I am still in a normal weight range for height and age. 

Thanks for reading

968 Replies

  • Patient Recoverandheal


    Hi everyone,

    Our resident GP has had a look at this thread and written an article about the things that can cause the brain fog and head pressure that Recoverandheal has described.

    Read it here:


    • joevii Patient

      My name is jonathan and i am 34yrs old from west afrcan, I have being having waves of squeezing presure in the brain, upper part of the brain, for 3 weeks now and I have being to 3 hospitals and have being placed on drugs like voltarin retard100mg nuriobium to say the least, but it's not getting better, have asked to do a CT scan, and I did, every thing came out fine, but said I have synopsis, was giving meds for that and still noting has changed

      Aside the upper head squeezing presure that comes in waves of 2sec per period, the left side of my head is tight too, the pain slides down to the back of the ear, jaw line and down to the neck.. all on the left side...which started a few days back..

      I am new here and read a similar case, 

      I was hoping to share, if anyone shares this kind of health issues and what they did to make it better... thank you

    • Guest joevii

      Hi Jonathan, wow ,just read what you wrote and I never thought I'd find someone experiencing what I go through.

      I get the head tightness , the squeezing, throat swelling and the headaches.   Those symptoms that I experience will generally be caused by my sensitivity to scents, fumes, and high humidity with high heat index.

      Today, I have experienced the symptoms because where I live is is a heat wave going on. The heat index is now 100, but earlier I went out on my porch and the heat index was 95 degrees with humidity level at 78 % and luckily I made it back inside cause I suddenly experienced those symptoms with tingling, chills, etc., Then to make me more anxious I started to wonder if the humidity level was rising in my home with the air running, so for awhile there I still did not feel well.  

      This all started about 6yrs ago, a year an a half after my brain surgery. I noticed certain foods will trigger symptoms.  And due to having non allergic vasomotor rhinitis it contributes to those symptoms. Foods that contain tannins I stay away, however I love nuts and try to stick to dry roasted nuts, because roasting helps remove the tannins and with the food elimination I can do more things without being restricted as much.  

      I am still working on finding things such as food to avoid or  foods that help and anything else that will alleviate or cure it. I do remember one time last summer surprisingly being outside in 112 degree and doing fine.  I had thought it was the elimination of gluten but now not so much.

      Have you had any luck in alleviating your symptoms?  Hope you are feeling better!

    • rob10979 joevii

      Hi, I had all of these symptoms in 2016. I had test after test. I even had a ct scan and everything came back normal. I went to 6 different doctors and nothing was found. Finally after going to my 7th doctor I found my problem. It was Hypothyroidism. You need to go to a endocrinologist to have your thyroid checked because regular doctors only check your TSH. You also need your T3, T4, reverse T3,free T3and Free T4 checked. 

    • haley59459 Patient

      Unfortunately I’m almost 100% positive it’s related to mdma use. I have also been suffering from these same exact issues for some years now. I never attributed it to the mdma before but I went to edc in May. My friends and I all took mdma it worked well for them but didn’t work at all for me. I’ve used it at least 20 times in the past but it hasn’t worked for the few last times. I had tried it two weeks prior to edc but before that it had been years. Anyway since it didn’t work and I was tired and didn’t want to be a Debby downer while my friends were trying to have fun I took a quarter of an adderall. I have been going through the most miserable time of my life since. Extreme panic attacks and depression, pressure in the head, inability to concentrate on anything, I feel as though the voice inside my head when thinking to myself is so much quieter, I never get a good nights rest (nightmares of not being able to think) my vision has changed dramatically, everything looks fuzzy and grey and staticky, I can’t connect with anyone, I’ve seriously contemplated suicide as I’m afraid I will never feel human again. I’ve tried lexapro which made everything even worse for me, I’ve tried wellibutron, 5htp, so many different supplements and no relief. The anxiety is a little more manageable now most likely because I’m getting used to the new me. I feel disconnected from the world and reality. I don’t even recognize myself anymore. Let me know if you do ever find help please. I’m on the verge of quitting my job and moving in with my family because of the constant anxiety and no longer being able to concentrate on work. I feel so hopeless. I tried to go to a doctor and explain what was going on and was honest about the drug use. It landed me in a behavioral health hospital for 5 days which being stuck there, forced to take meds and forced to cut my cigarettes smoking down to 4 a day only exacerbated everything. Any help or advice would be great.

    • Patient-Mod haley59459

      Hi haley59459

      We note from a recent post which you have made to our forum that you may be experiencing thoughts around self-harm. If we have misinterpreted your comments then we apologise for contacting you directly. But if you are having such thoughts then please note that you are not alone in this, and there are people out there that can help.

      If you are having these suicidal thoughts then we strongly recommend you speak to someone who may be able to help. The Samaritans offer a safe space where you can talk openly about what you are going through. They can help you explore your options, understand your problems better, or just be there to listen.

      Their contact details are on our patient information leaflet here:, which also offers lots of other advice on how you can access the help you may need.

      If you are having such thoughts then please do reach out to the team at the Samaritans (or the other people detailed in our leaflet) who will understand what you're going through and will be able to help.

      Kindest regards


    • rob87522 rob10979

      Hi Rob. My hormon level got messed up and we found out Im dealing with the same issue than you...


      But I dont know how to cure this situation.... I live stress full life...Im planing to relocate to a calmer area also...

      What should I do ?

    • sazzle75 rob10979


      I've had a squeezing sensation in my head for about a year now.

      it comes in waves loke I've been whacked around the head and it fuzzies for a few seconds then goes.

      I can have these anytime. driving, in bed, sat still.. so it's nothing I'm doing or looking at.

      I had an MRI thinking it was ear and balance related. Nothing.

      I don't get any other symptoms but can have this numerous times a day.

      Do you think it could be the same thing?

      I've never taken any drugs but have had chemo 3 years ago.

  • daisyrose504 Recoverandheal


    Thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed explaination of what is going on with you. I don't feel so alone now.  Brief history on me;

    I am a 38 y/o female.  I work in law enforecment. I have been healthy my whole life, no medical history to report other than kidneys stones every few years.  I do suffer from mild anxiety and depression from time to time, I lost my family the last several years. I take ativan 0.5 mg only when needed A week ago, I woke up with what I thought was flu-like symptoms.  Muscle-aches, sensitivity to light, joint pain, mild nausea, dull headache. After I got off wok, I drove home and went straight to bed hoping some rest would help. I woke up the next morning and my symptoms were 10'xs worse, in addition to bilateral temporal pain and my brain actually felt "hot". I started feeling foggy and my short term memory was failing.  I felt like I was in a fog and nothing made much sense.  I started medicating with tylenol and ibuprofen in hopes of allieving my pain.  Nothing helped.   I had meetings the next 3 days that I could not miss, so I forced myself to go and sit through them while in extreme pain and diiscomfort. The headache would not go away.  When I returned to work on Friday morning, my co-workers urged me to go to the emergency room. They said I did not look or act like my usual self. All the tests came back normal in the ER. CT scan, blood work, ekg. I left without a real diagnoses. 

    I have no isues with migraines. Physically fit and a non smoker and drinker. This acute unexplained illness has really scared me.

    • Hollyberry daisyrose504

      Wonder if you had a virus? Been a really nasty one going around here. Friend of mine couldn't move for almost a week. She still sounds awful now. I had it but got over it in 3 days. It came on really quickly and I just collapsed into bed and emerged 2 days later. Be careful with ibuprofen---always take with food and don't take too frequently.

      hope you feel better soon.

    • kayla02463 daisyrose504

      I've been having the same exact symptoms. I'm currently using a one month heart monitor so far they haven't found anything . I do suffer from anxiety too. the docs told me the symptoms are all from anxiety and stress. but I've been feeling these symptoms for a month now, could they really last this long ?

    • billie13318 daisyrose504

      Try a cervical pillow. I had all the symptoms in the original post and using the pillow eliminated my symptoms overtime. I bought the Tricore standard firm. My symptoms made my life miserable so I wanted to make this suggestion to as many people as possible. I wish you well. 

    • ashley826 daisyrose504

      I see this comment was over a year ago but I hope you will somehow see this. Please please go back to your doctor and ask them to check your calcium and parathyroid hormone levels (not the same as thyroid). Do some research on Hyperparathyroidism aka Parathyroid disease. The fact that you have kidney stones is a red flag for me. I had this disease and I felt very similar. Kidney stones are also a symptom. It is curable if you see a surgeon who knows what he is talking about. 

    • andrew69519 daisyrose504

      I've had similar symptoms to what you have told you might of actually harmed a part of your neck your back or have been sitting in an awkward position that or may even suffer from light PTSD or blocking thoughts or emotions may be taking its toll on your cognitive mind

    • momof32016 daisyrose504


      I know this post is over a year old, but I was wondering if you ever got a diagnosis on your symptoms? I have had the exact symptoms for 2 months now with no change. I have been to the ER on the second day of pressure in my head. My CT scan was normal. I was diagnosed with Acute Sinusitis. I went to my PCP and he did blood work which came back with a elevated Sed rate, so he diagnosed me with Temporal Artiritis. I went for a biopsy on my head and it came back normal as well. After that he sent me for a MRI on the brain and it also came back normal. Although the pressure hasn't left for two months, dizziness is stronger and blood pressure is now high. I have been taking steroids for the entire time and really am not sure why. He said it was for the Sinuitis and Temporal Artiritis, but both were ruled out. I am also now on BP meds which causes extreme dizziness on a daily basis. I have been told that it could be anxiety, and I feel like I do have some but not enough to explain my symptoms. Please anyone if you have answers I would love to hear them.

    • janeth001 ashley826

      Ashley, i just read your text and am very curious about the symptoms you previously had. My son is having brain fog, visual disturbances, headaches 24X7 and pressure on his neck, plus fatigue and other symptoms. So, we will check his calcium level. Can you tell me how you were diagnosed and what symptoms you had? Thank you very much for sharing!!


    • mark84018 anurag79971

      About 4 years unfortunately , I am coming to the conclusion that it is linked to my neck as I always seems to have neck ache alongside the foggy head, can't remember the last time that I had a really good nights sleep and the sensation starts the second I open my eyes on the morning, hope this helps and I will keep watching the posts in case somebody suggests a miracle cure !

    • Matenai daisyrose504

      You need to have your parathyroid checked if you have not done so already. If you do have hyperparathyroidism then make sure you go to a specialist in a major institution and any surgery is performed by someone doing dozens a month. There is a strong correlation between kidney stones and hyperparathyroidism as they both envolve calcium related issues. How much milk do you can try drinking 3 8oz glasses per day WITH meals and do not use supplements as they can make things worse. Diary calcium is best and other forms are fine but keep target at 90mg per day. This is my new diet after having these problems myself.

    • scott47448 janeth001

      janet, hope your son is feeling better. I have had those same systems for almost three years. It was my thyroid. couldnt sleep, couldn't move a lot, no energy, irritable, which was made worse by the brain fog, issues with my memory. The list went on. The red flags were high thyroid hormone, and there was also test run on thyroid anti bodies. For the first year and a bit my thyroid was going whacky, up down up down. and now finally leveled at underactive.

    • allise47209 daisyrose504


      i just wanted to respond to you bc i am going through the same symptoms, i am 38 female also, but i also have my vision going in and out. this has been going on for a month now and i cannot find out what is going on. ive been seen by my PCP and have gone to the emergency room and no one seems to know what is going on. i work in the medical field and cannot seem to figure out what is causing all of this....

    • jackson97300 andrew69519

      I have these same symptoms as well, specifically the brain fog, I cannot feel any emotions it seems what so ever. If this is caused by harming the neck can a chiropractor fix this or if it is PTSD/suppressed thoughts have you found a solution? The feeling is tormenting.

    • Ladybug719 valerie20343

      Hi Valerie,

      Did the chiropractor help you with your sysmpoms and do you have your neck adjusted? My neurologist said to never let anyone adjust your neck. I don't want to go back to the chiropractor if only a neck adjustment would help.

      Thanks for any info you can give.

    • veronica20125 Ladybug719

      I went to see a Blair Upper cervical spin in LA. Dr Hall. I saw him for a month not long enough to feel relief.  I'm looking into a chiro in Texas now. I've read other that have had relief with upper spine. Before the chiro makes any adjustments x rays are taken first. Imagining will be able to tell the doctor if sdjusting is needed. Then you can make your decision. 

      I have several medical issues - anxiety, depression, peri menopausal and Menieres. 

      Not sure if these symptoms are from one issue or all. 

    • frank.billy daisyrose504


      I have almost all your symptoms since 9 years now, but I have a numbness sensation only on my left side of my skull, I mean I feel totally zen on my right side so it's hard to think it's can be a mental or anxiety problem. I mean I don't think I can be sick only on a one side of my brain. I rather think it's more about a nerve stuck in my neck or my back and that's give me a tension headache with a sensation that is come from inside my head. I mean I have this wrong feeling that I have diffilculty to think by my left side of my brain because, I think, the painful numbness sensation from the scalp. By the way sorry for my limited english, I'm a french canadian lol

    • frank.billy fifi3434

      Hi fifi,

      I have almost all your symptoms since 9 years now, but I have a numbness sensation only on my left side of my skull, I mean I feel totally zen on my right side so it's hard to think it's can be a mental or anxiety problem. I mean I don't think I can be sick only on a one side of my brain. I rather think it's more about a nerve stuck in my neck or my back and that's give me a tension headache with a sensation that is come from inside my head. I mean I have this wrong feeling that I have diffilculty to think by my left side of my brain because, I think, the painful numbness sensation from the scalp. By the way sorry for my limited english, I'm a french canadian lol

    • Missysf1 frank.billy

      Hi there, this is exactly what I have been feeling since 7 months ago having ACDF surgery c6,c7. Left side pressure on back bottom of my skull. I'm thinking it's nerve injury? ? I'm not sure either but I didn't have it before surgery. The fusion has done nothing for my pain, now 7 months. I also feel fatigued and have the awful brain fog. Let me know if anyone finds out something about this. I'm going back to my neurosurgeon and see what he says soon. Thank you and I hope you feel better soon. If we can figure out what is causing it.

    • todd2112 frank.billy

      Hi Frank,

      I have something very similar to you. I chipped a front tooth about a year and a half ago and got it rebonded. This threw off my bite and I developed numbness in the left side of my face, tmj type symptoms in my left jaw and tightness in the front left of my neck(to the left of the adams apple(Whatever that muscle is). If i get jarred at all(even someone slapping me on the arm) then my left head almost has a loose feeling and I get very lightheaded where it is hard to function. Ive been to almost every doctor and homeopathic healer I can think of but am still suffering. I, like you,. believe that a nerve is being compressed somewhere causing these sensations. I wish there was a test I could have that would show what nerve is causing this and if something can be done(I think its trigeminal neuralgia but my neuro thinks its Occipital). Either way no relief yet...

    • rob 98066 allise47209

      Get your vitamins B12 checked. That would explain most of the symptoms. Often people can’t absorb it through digestion and need injections. Lack of B12 causes neurological problems that are serious including the degrading of the optic nerve.   

    • frank.billy todd2112

      Hi Todd,

      After 4 months I tried everything to remove the supposedly ''nerve'' stuck in my neck and nothing happened. Now I'm thinking it's psychologic and I just must overthinking all the time, because seriously I tried everything since 9 years (scan, IRM, osteopathy, acupuncture, etc.) and I'm tired now. I just don't understand why it's only on one side on my brain (numbness). I'm scared for my life and disappointed. Never the less, 12 years ago I was suffering of terrible headaches (all the head) it's was different than now (far less worst) but still after two years of suffering, I developed a kind of meditation and that's 90% removed my symptoms. It's based on a meditation (for now I will keep the name for me), but I did it my way. My life was good when I was doing this. It's allow you to not live in the past or in the future, but just live in the moment present (in other words, that stop the constant automatic thinking). I hesitate to use it now, because I love so much my dog and I feel I will burry my emotions (somehow) if I do this meditation. I like him so much and since 9 years I did not use my meditation (I stopped it because my ex-girlfriend said consistently I was too "relax" haha). On the other hand, I'm not sure about this meditation, because my problem is different than the first one 12 years ago and normal peoples (I mean happy people living without numbness in they head) probably don't have to do this to live well. I mean since I'm born to 15 years old I did not have to do my meditation, I was just living perfectly with my conscience without headache or numbness in my head. I feel completely overwhelmed this time...

    • lance1987mccoy jackson97300

      Hey Jackson I know this post is 8 months old but I could really relate to your post in regards to not being able to feel emotions. I have told people that even when I share my insecurities with others that I dont feel vulnerable. I dont feel anything. This is tormenting and I was wondering if you had any relief?

    • Blueskii momof32016

      You definitely need to find a naturopath MD.  Out of pocket but I'm finally biting the bullet and going.  I have so many of the same symptoms of the original post.   I was diagnosed with Psoriatic arthritis and Sjogren's in 2013,  I was then put on infusions, steroids, you name it.  Then fell on concrete twice, sustaining two concussions.  Also had an anaphylactic reaction to Remicade infusion.   The meds never really helped my symptom anyway So, I got extremely depressed and about to give up.  My last hope was to research myself and was actually doing much better with change of diet...cutting out gmo's, organic as much as possible, "try" to stay away from gluten as much as possible...But lately I'm so bad off again with symptoms he mentioned plus severe back, neck and leg pain,  severe fatigue,  I'm now on disability for a while and had lots of labs drawn (the send outs are not in yet)  the rest look golden, Im sure because of my diet change.  So I will go see a naturopath doctor on the 13th to whom my best friend goes to.  She has been going for about 3-4 years and I've seen her life change for the better in so many ways...including drop the 10-15 extra pounds she was unable to get rid of.  She swears by these doctors and how they've helped her with thyroid/hormones etc...It's worth looking into and if you already have I'd be interested in knowing your results or if you were able to find out and treat w/out.  

    • allise47209 Reese41681

      Neurologist says that is peudotumor cerebri but I am not convinced thats what it is. Seeing as myself and another woman I used to work with came down with the same symptoms within a couple months of each other and we are not close in age either. Most lab tests come back normal.

    • allise47209 rob10979

      I've had my thyroid labs checked every year, every time comes back normal. Only thing that was abnormal was a thyroid ultrasound which my thyroid was enlarged, in which the Drs are sure it is from the flattening of my pituitary gland.

    • allise47209 rob10979

      I've had my thyroid labs checked every year, every time comes back normal. Only thing that was abnormal was a thyroid ultrasound which my thyroid was enlarged, in which the Drs are sure it is from the flattening of my pituitary gland.


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