Milder symptoms of motion sickness/dizziness

Posted , 4 users are following.

Hello all, 

I have been suffering from sensations of motion sickness/dizziness for the last 2-3 months due to any one of the following isuues: my neck discomfort, anxiety/stress related to these symptoms, or possibly inner ear issues(Have yet to see an ENT). You can check out my other posts for a more in depth explanation of my issue if youre interested. Anyways, after doing some reading of other posts on this forum I have realized that my symptoms are much much milder than others found here; much respcet and love for those of you who have suffered for years without a cure/relief as I can barely handle much more of this and Im only 3 moths in. I find it difficult to describe what Im feeling even to myself, the best way I can explain it is that it feels like a very faint sense of motion sickness or dizziness that feels like it radiates from the back of my head/neck. I do not have impaired vision, balance, or spinning which I find to be strange since so many on here suffer from these sensations at a very severe level. My sympotms are more of an annoyance than anything as I can still operate normally on a daily basis(goto the gym, work, hang out with friends). Ocasionally I feel to bad to go out but that does not happen very often. Sometimes I even wonder if the mind games are even worse than the symptoms themselves as my anxiety/stress levels are through the roof becuase I dont know what is wrong with me and I worry that I will be like this forever. However, I am hopeful that since my symptoms are relatively mild compared to others, that the issue does not stem from the inner ear but rather from neck or from some other curable source. I guess my question is if anyone here has experienced these milder symptoms and if any diagnosis/cure has been discovered, what is it? And any tips on managing anxiety would be greatly appreciated as that is just as unpleasant as the dizziness itself.

Thanks 

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15 Replies

  • Posted

    I am going to guess that the issue might be your neck. If you google SCM muscle issues you can read about the problems people have with their neck sometimes. You may want to look into an  Osteopathic doctor if this is the case. I have issues with my neck and part of it s from foward head posture. My posture is really bad.
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    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply! Would this issue present itself on an mri becuase the only thing that was stated on the report was that I have mild straightining of the cervical spine. My neck mostly feels tired and strained all the time with the occasional bursts of sharp pain. Im planning on getting therapy for my neck in hopes to cure my dizziness.
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  • Posted

    I have the same thing as you, I feel this weird sway motion and my head feels like it contracts, I have a bad neck, do you? 
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    • Posted

      I think your neck is likely to be the culprit. Stiffening of the neck muscles can lead to reduced circulation to the base of the brain, which also has an input into balance-related functions.

      Two years ago I went through a period of having frequent loss of balance, causing me to fall backward falls suddenly turning my head to the left, including one terrifying occasion when I fell on a moving downward escalator. I didn't have any sensations associated with vertigo (which I'm well aware of, having had two attacks of BPPV).

      I initially feared this was going to be permanent, as I'm in my 70s. My GP sent me for an MRI of my neck, which showed osteoarthritis but not much else. He then referred me to a physiotherapist, who taught me some neck exercises. It all cleared up in a few months and I've had no problems since, apart from a completely unrelated attack of BPPV.

      It's probably worth mentioning that I was going through a period of intense stress and anxiety which had started a few months before the these attacks. I've always been aware of tensing my neck and jaw muscles in times of stress.

      I realise your symptoms are somewhat different, but they all fall into the same area as balance-related problems. (I'm a former neuro nurse so know a little about this.) I'd advise seeing an ENT specialist - or preferably a neurotologist if there's one in your area, as they're better qualified to pick up on causes related both to the inner ear and the nervous system. They will be able to discern whether or not the problem is related to your ears, and will probably order an MRI too. If this doesn't turn up anything, then get some physiotherapy on your neck.

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    • Posted

      I can't diagnose you, but yes - stiffness or contractions of the neck muscles can definitely radiate to the head. This is because the head and neck muscles form a continuous sheet.

      Problems with the neck muscles can also impede the blood supply to the base of the brain, causing feelings of dizziness or instability, or even - in cases like mine - temporarily disrupting balance altogether.

      However, you should see a doctor to exclude other causes before treating your neck.

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    • Posted

      Hmm interesting, the thing I'm confused about is how I feel like this all the time, i mean if it were related to the neck wouldn't there be moments of relief or positions that don't aggravate the muscles? I don't have impaired balance from this either.

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    • Posted

      You say you feel like this all the time. However, I took your advice (in your starter post in this thread) to look at your other posts, and you've stated more than once that your symptoms go away or at least reduce significantly when you're fully occupied. You've also made several statements indicating that you're very anxious indeed about your symptoms. Your family doctor seems to have the same opinion, as he's prescribed an antidepressant (which I can't say I agree with, but that's another story).

      I don't mean to attack you or minimise your symptoms in any way in saying the above. But anxiety - as I know from my personal experience - can cause long-term tensing of the neck and jaw muscles, usually without the person realising this is going on. The muscles tend to relax when you're concentrating on something else.

      As mentioned in my earlier post, the lack of balance problems in your case is neither here nor there. I only gave it as an example because the systems in the inner ear and brain which generate and interpret information on the position of our heads also have an input to balance. My neck tension gave rise to balance problems because I was in my 70s when it was going on, and elderly people have an increased tendency to impaired balance anyway. It would be more likely just to generate feelings of dizziness in someone your age.

      Your age could be highly relevant. You say you're 20. That's a difficult time in life for all of us - on the cusp between adolescence and adulthood. It's common to go through all kinds of anxieties at that age, especially health anxiety. Many of us don't see this as an anxious time when we're going through it, but only in retrospect. However, you've very sensibly had the full range of tests, so it's clear that there is no serious pathology going on in your brain.

      I think you need to stop worrying and wait till you see the ENT doctor now. Or, as another poster has pointed out, try and see a neurotologist. The latter will have a better overview of the interaction between the inner ear and the brain.

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much for all this info. It probably doesn't help that I work a desk job and am looking down for a greater part of the day and driving as well puts a great deal of discomfort on my neck. I used a TENS unit on my upper neck last night but unfortunately it has made my sensations of motion sickness worse for the time being. I have an ENT appointment scheduled for next Friday so we are one step closer to diagnosis! Again thanks for your input.

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