unsteady / off balance feeling

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nate2791
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 6/18/2014 4:45 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello readers. I am a 22 year old male , and i have had anxiety, OCD, depression since i was about 19. symptoms have varied from really bad for months at a time to manageable periods of few months. I have read so many forums like these over the last 3 years or so, to try and make sense of what goes on with me , and it helps to know there are so many people out there that go through the same sorta stuff.

This is the first time i have joined a forum like this and I'm writing this post now because I'm at one of those periods where things are quite bad for me. Maybe some of you can relate and any advice or guidance would be really helpful.

I'm currently going through another stage where i am constantly worrying 24/7 about my health. I have had a anxiety for a long time now and dread getting things like the cold/flu. I obsess about certain parts of my body relating to a certain feeling in that area, whether it be actual pain or not. For the past 2 and a half months i have had this unsteady/ off balance feeling when I'm walking or standing, like I'm going to fall left of right or backwards and forwards. At first it seemed to be worse when i would turn my head a certain way i would get a weird feeling like my head didn't know where it was in relation to my body. Its defiantly worse when I'm in more inclosed spaces and where there are more objects around and more people moving around, like if i go into the supermarket it is an absolute nightmare.

I can identify that this symptom started around the same time i started to get high anxiety again when i was obsessing really bad about my neck. My neck felt tight and i was doing lots of different stretches to try and minimize my discomfort, although i was probably just making it worse. I just want to know what is causing this off balance feeling, could it really be just anxiety, because im focusing on it all the time? The reason im so worried is that i have never had this feeling as a direct result of my anxiety so I'm worried that its something Ive done to myself by overstretching my neck, or that its something to do with my ear ect. This has been going on for nearly 3 months now and I'm really wearing down mentally, I'm really depressed because of this feeling. My doctor thinks i have BBPV and gave me a medication, which makes no difference, I'm also getting a CT scan of my head.

Kalman
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 40
   Posted 6/18/2014 5:56 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi there nate. Hope you feel better soon! I would just talk to your doctor and see what they say. I know how it is as this past month I've had really extreme anxiety. Tightness in my chest and burning sensations in my skin like its on fire. Which where new to me. Normally i just get pounding heart and all that. but the constant tightness and random burning sensations where new and freaked me out. I've been to the ER 3 times in the past couple weeks and all the tests come back normal and they say it's just anxiety. My doctor actually prescribed me some stuff for it so im taking meds again. So far the meds haven't kicked in as they take 2-4weeks and can make my symtomps worse. Usually when some new feeling happens I tend to do the worse thing possible and look up my symptoms online and then come into conclusion that I have all these things wrong with me which in turn freak me out more. That being said tho sometimes my anxiety gets really bad and i cant control it. Like 2 3 years ago it got so bad my left arm and legs where going numb constantly and id get pressure headaches. which lasted a month or 2 ( can't remember how long). Since then i was ok until recently!

Anyways Just continue talking to your doctor tell them everything your feeling! Hopefully you feel better soon!

Scaredy Cat
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 27127
   Posted 6/18/2014 9:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Nate and welcome!

Well I can tell you that you are not alone...in your anxiety, symptoms or health worries!

We have so many members here who describe similar issues, and I can relate to many points in your post as well.

What is anything have you tried for relief from the anxiety so far?

I ask, because there are many things that can be done at home on your own for relief.

It sounds like you are working with your doctor to rule out anything physical in nature and that is good...follow through with that for sure.

However, I am going to post some links for self-help that you can be getting under way with in the meantime.:)
 
Health Anxiety - A Self Help Guide:
 
Helping health Anxiety
 
 
 
Self Help sites with breathing/relaxation exercises instructions
Panic attack relief exercises:
 
http://www.healthcentral.com/anxiety/c/73076/34334/breathing-lessons/ (improper breathing/hyperventilation which we often do unknowingly when stressed can cause dizziness...learn and practice breathing techniques!)
 
 
http://www.stress-relief-exercises.com/ (check out the progressive muscle relaxation exercise here for relief of neck tension, which can exacerbate the off balanced feelings)
 
 


Check out these links, and see if anything looks helpful to you. Keep posting with us as well. We understand, care and are here to listen anytime. Support is key!

Talk to you soon,

Scaredy Cat
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

Post Edited (Scaredy Cat) : 6/18/2014 10:11:40 AM (GMT-6)


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/18/2014 10:17 AM (GMT -7)   
nate,
 

Welcome to HealingWell  and the A & P Forum. This is the place to come if you have questions or concerns about anxiety/panic, related medications and their side effects and recovery. Some of our members have been living with anxiety and related disorders for years, while others are new to this disorder. 

I'm sorry that your anxiety is so bad and really affecting you in a negative way. Do you have a therapist, if not; do you think you could try to get one? It's hard to try to deal with this on your own. Certain therapies, like Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy can usually be really beneficial for GAD and other anxiety disorders.

A predisposition for fearing the worst is a typical symptom experienced by people suffering from health anxiety.  This is a kind of anxiety disorder wherein a person believes that a serious disorder is present in the body. The person interprets the various body sensations as symptoms of the serious diseases. Nonetheless, any possible organic disorder should be excluded before establishing a diagnosis for anxiety. In your case, a CT-scan of the head sounds very appropriate to me as you have this feeling of being off balance. 

I suspect your Dr. is considering benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) because it  is the most common disorder of the inner ear in the adult population.

I am going to post a link that might help you with your anxiety:

Complementary-Alternative Treatments for Anxiety and Depression

 
Stick with us as we care,
Kitt

 


~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic
and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.


"She Stood in the Storm & When the Wind Did Not Blow Her Away, She Adjusted Her Sails."

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 6/18/2014 10:30 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Nate and we welcome you!

If you type in "health anxiety" in the search feature, I'm willing to bet you'll be both surprised and yet comforted, by just how many people have this! I've come to understand this tends to be one of the most common manifestations.

I had it myself when I was younger. Started when I was a child (single digit years!)....when kids should be thinking about playing, I was hyper-obsessed with my physical well-being and convinced I had every disease I may have (even accidentally) overheard being spoken about.

In fact, for a few years through grade school, most Science classes (when we were talking about Biology), I never made it through. I either got sick, or I'd be raising my hand and telling the teacher I wasn't feeling very good. (By golly, I still remember my Science teacher's name, so it's pretty cemented in there!)

Fast forward many years later and most of my occupations ended up being in various aspects of the health field. Now, I adore all things medical!

Not meaning to 'hijack' your post, but hopefully to share that......here, in me, is a person who has successfully overcome health anxiety! I did it. So can you! You can make peace with it and beat it.....

You found a good forum in which to share.









M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

nate2791
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 6/30/2014 7:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone

Thanks for all your replies and links. I went and got a Ct scan on my head and of course everything came up clear. Hardly reassurance for me as i have still got this weird off balance feeling although at least i know its nothing life threatening.

Ive decided im going to get some help again. Ive been managing on my own for about a year now with this anxiety but over the last 3 months its just been getting harder and harder to maintain control. i'm 24/7 obsessing there is a problem with my neck and these feelings are making me constantly on edge. I'm so depressed and i'm struggling to even go to work now.

I'll be going to see a psychiatrist tomorrow to discuss all of this, hopefully i could get into a cbt course aswell, as i have heard its really helpful.

wish me luck and thanks again , no doubt ill be back.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/30/2014 8:00 AM (GMT -7)   
nate,
 
Good Morning.  A clear CT of your head should bring you  reassurance because it   has  provide the doctor with important information about the brain - he/she may want to know whether there is any bleeding, swelling of the arteries, or tumors.
 
You head checks out fine so that should be a huge relief.  Dealing with anxiety is a rough road but you can learn coping skills and choosing to see your psychiatrist tomorrow should help you in setting up cbt therapy.
 
I wish you well,
Kitt
~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic
and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.


"She Stood in the Storm & When the Wind Did Not Blow Her Away, She Adjusted Her Sails."

trin123
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 46
   Posted 8/6/2014 4:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey nate, look into chronic subjective dizziness. it can happen with people who have anxiety. I have anxiety myself. worth mentioning to the doc, they have things to help with it!

MidwestGirl1991
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2017
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/7/2017 10:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi! I realize that I'm replying to a post 3 years after it was posted, but as sufferers of GAD/PD/Depression, I am pretty sure that people who are doing a quick search on their symptoms will come across this post (as I did) and perhaps I could provide some vital information/help someone who is going through the same thing as you and I.

I was diagnosed with PD in 2010 after a strain of severe panic attacks. I was subsequently placed on Lexapro for the anxiety, which seemed to help the panic attacks quite a bit; however, I was experiencing rough side effects from the medication and had tapered off of it in 2012. I did great for several months, until I was driving to college and experienced a panic attack while driving. The panic attack left me with severe eye strain/inability to focus my eyes properly and a strange off-balance sensation 24/7. I was unable to walk properly, as it always felt as if I was swaying, and the ground felt extremely soft, as if i was walking on a trampoline. This worsened over the course of several months, and i began to have extreme headaches as if someone was drilling through the center of my skull. The most accurate way to describe the sensation (dizziness/vertigo, off-balance, vision issues) is that it feels as if I was constantly inebriated. One day (in 2013) when it was extremely bad, I forced myself to go to the ER to rule out any physical complications. I was referred to a neurologist who did all sorts of tests and found nothing. He told me that it was my anxiety/stress manifesting through the dizziness/off-balance sensation and prescribed me Effexor XR. It is now June 2017 and I had been taking Effexor for 4 years without ANY off-balance/dizzy symptoms whatsoever. Within 2 weeks of first beginning the medication, all of my panic, anxiety, depression, and the physical symptoms that accompanied them subsided and I finally felt normal again. I had my life back!

Unfortunately, I gained quite a large amount of weight while taking Effexor (I automatically attributed it to the medication, although now I admit that my diet and lack of exercise was horrible) and thought it would be a great idea to taper off of it earlier this year. Just one month ago, I took my last dose of Effexor and while I did have some withdrawal symptoms, I felt ok. Just a couple weeks ago, my eyes began to lose focus and I felt a bit dizzy while my husband and I were at dinner, and for that entire day, my vision/balance was ALL I thought about. Now, I have the extreme balance issues/dizziness again just as I did four years ago. It is horrifying and all I want to do is lay down and cry. This is ALL anxiety-related! My anxiety has crept back since stopping my medication and now I am constantly worrying and focusing on my balance/dizziness so much that I can't even think properly. I no longer want to work, cook dinner, clean, or anything else I love to do. From the moment I wake up until the moment I go to sleep, my mind is solely focused on my eyesight and balance. It has sent me into about 3 panic attacks just this week.

Anxiety/depression is a STRONG illness that will manifest itself in so many different ways. When I had the dizziness years ago, I was diagnosed with a variety of conditions - BPPV, labyrinthitis, ear infection. It is likely not any of these; it's anxiety!!

AnxiousTexan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2014
Total Posts : 363
   Posted 6/8/2017 10:34 AM (GMT -7)   
I have random dizziness / wobbliness too and definitely attribute it to my anxiety given everything has come back clear on the medical front.

It is very uncomfortable at times, but I have learned to power through it and because of that I think my brain largely ignores it these days (though not always).

There is a good book called, "Hope and Help for your Nerves" by Dr. Claire Weekes. The first part goes over how your nervous system works and talks about what anxiety can, and cannot, do to your body. I forgot what she calls it, but basically feeling wobbly and dizzy is a big symptom for many people.

Hang in there and post up as much as you need!
Anxiety Sufferer Since the 1980s

Medications:
Lexapro @ 10mg per day
Trazodone as needed for sleep

Shadowless36
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 8/26/2017 10:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Any updates here from anyone? Can an eeg test detect anxiety spikes?

Scaredy Cat
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 27127
   Posted 8/27/2017 2:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Shadowless and welcome!

Since this is an older thread...so I will be locking it down soon...

...but to answer your question...I do not think that an EEG would be able to detect anxiety...the test is mostly are looking for abnormalities in the electric impulses in the brain. (such as looking for seizure activity)

Please feel free to continue sharing by starting your own thread (Post New Topic icon top left toolbar) so that we can officially welcome you. We are here anytime you need support. smile

Scaredy Cat
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT
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