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Thread: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

  1. #1

    Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Hey all,

    This forum has done a great job in the past with my anxiety and I hope maybe to get some advice or similar experiences again

    For the last 2-3 weeks I have had a constant feeling of lightheadedness. It is mild but always there and sometimes worsens for a short period though only once has it been more than a mild feeling. The one time though was truly frightening, everything was spinning no matter my position and I nearly had a full blown panic attack since I was certain I was having a stroke or something. Aside from that it hasn't been more than an annoyance that I just can't shake. Health anxiety being what it is leads me to hyperfocus on it which I'm sure only makes it worse or at least more noticeable.

    I've been in contact with doctors and have had various tests done:

    - Blood tests = All levels were normal. It was promarily a vitamin test but I'm not sure what else they checked (they took four vials)

    - Eye test = My eyes are slightly worse than they were but no more than the optician expected. I have new glasses coming but they aren't here yet. She also mentioned from the photos she took of the back of my eye that my blood vessels were "squiggly" which can be evidence of high blood pressure (more on that later...)

    - ECG = Everything normal.

    - Blood pressure = This is the one that is causing me a lot of concern. I have what I believe to be a high blood pressure though it isn't dangerously so. The nurse, when she took it said it was a touch on the high side but not nearly enough to need attention. It was something like 133/93 and when I mentioned my anxiety she said that would explain the raised numbers. My home monitor frequently as the top number at around 120/135 and the bottom number has been anywhere from 77/95... There was one outlier during the intence dizziness episode where my blood pressure was 140/100 but that was thankfully a one-off and almost certainly thanks to my panic attack.

    This is where I am now. I have a 24-hour ECG booked for next week but still no answers as to what is going on. I don't have any other symptoms of anything... I don't feel more tired than usual, no swelling, no breathlessness, etc.

    The lightheadedness can occassionally flare up but I'm far from certain what causes it. I went to the shops and back today with no problem but bending over to take my shoes off and standing up again made it worse for just a second or two. I don't feel like this is always the case though. The other night to test it I lad on the ground then jumped up as quickly as possible and didn't have a problem.

    Does anyone have experience with a similar problem? A persistent lightheadedness that doesn't go away no matter what?

    Thank you for any help anyone has!

  2. #2
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    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Based on your normal test results, that leaves one thing.

    FMP
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  3. #3
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    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    You mentioned about your eyes and the need for glasses. If I don't wear my glasses I will feel off balance, and dizzy. I've had a few occasions in the past where I've been left feeling like the room is spinning. It always happened alongside a ringing in my ears, and during periods of high anxiety.

    BP in a doctors office should not be trusted because of white collar syndrome. I was actually placed on BP meds once because of this and had to invest in a BP monitor to check it out. My BP was always fine. Crazy how doctors prescribed me meds without questioning white collar syndrome. This was some 8 years ago.
    __________________
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  4. #4

    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fishmanpa View Post
    Based on your normal test results, that leaves one thing.

    FMP
    Whilst I am definitely open to the idea that it is anxiety based every time I look up the dizziness symptom for anxiety they describe it as like a short term thing when you are hyperventilating or such. What I have been experienced is just a constant lightheadedness at a low level. Can anxiety manifest like that?

  5. #5

    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Quote Originally Posted by WiredIncorrectly View Post
    You mentioned about your eyes and the need for glasses. If I don't wear my glasses I will feel off balance, and dizzy. I've had a few occasions in the past where I've been left feeling like the room is spinning. It always happened alongside a ringing in my ears, and during periods of high anxiety.

    BP in a doctors office should not be trusted because of white collar syndrome. I was actually placed on BP meds once because of this and had to invest in a BP monitor to check it out. My BP was always fine. Crazy how doctors prescribed me meds without questioning white collar syndrome. This was some 8 years ago.
    It could be the glasses. I won't know until I receive the new pair but I was told this new prescription isn't much different than my current one to the point where they said I should keep my current pair for backup.

    With the blood pressure... I think they were taking the "white collar syndrome" into account when looking at my results. The thing is my results at home can also be a bit high but it can depend on how anxious I feel. Sometimes (very rarely) it's high to the point of being hypertension and other times it is just on the high end of normal or a little above.

    I will say that I'm going to enquire about meds for anxiety. I'm on Sertraline (50mg) and have been for five years (I think...) It's the lowest dose and I know that it can lose effectiveness over the time so I might need to have my medication adjusted.

    PS. I also realised I could've multi-quoted rather than post twice. I apologise!

  6. #6
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    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Quote Originally Posted by Elfking View Post
    It could be the glasses. I won't know until I receive the new pair but I was told this new prescription isn't much different than my current one to the point where they said I should keep my current pair for backup.

    With the blood pressure... I think they were taking the "white collar syndrome" into account when looking at my results. The thing is my results at home can also be a bit high but it can depend on how anxious I feel. Sometimes (very rarely) it's high to the point of being hypertension and other times it is just on the high end of normal or a little above.

    I will say that I'm going to enquire about meds for anxiety. I'm on Sertraline (50mg) and have been for five years (I think...) It's the lowest dose and I know that it can lose effectiveness over the time so I might need to have my medication adjusted.

    PS. I also realised I could've multi-quoted rather than post twice. I apologise!

    Testing BP at home is like checking your own pulse, the moment you start checking it rises. If you're somebody who panics like that it can be tough to get a good reading. But, if anxiety is causing BP to be higher most of the time then meds might help. Sometimes anxiety can cause people's heartrate to be constantly higher than normal and they need beta blockers to counter that. Sometimes anxiety goes haywire and can affect how we think and behave. I'm tied up in an anxiety knot at the moment myself. Anxiety sucks.
    __________________
    I am the king of typos. There's no reason for waiting to follow your dreams, you never know if you're going to be able to later in life.

    Medications: 40mg Quitapine, 40mg Paroxatine, 300mg Promazine, 6mg-10mg Diazepam
    Diagnosis: Panic disorder, General anxiety, Agoraphobia, Depression, Aspergers.

    Recovering alcoholic. Recovering codeine abuser.

  7. #7

    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Have you had your ears checked? When I am having issues with my inner ears I get very bad dizziness and vertigo.

  8. #8

    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    Quote Originally Posted by WiredIncorrectly View Post
    Testing BP at home is like checking your own pulse, the moment you start checking it rises. If you're somebody who panics like that it can be tough to get a good reading. But, if anxiety is causing BP to be higher most of the time then meds might help. Sometimes anxiety can cause people's heartrate to be constantly higher than normal and they need beta blockers to counter that. Sometimes anxiety goes haywire and can affect how we think and behave. I'm tied up in an anxiety knot at the moment myself. Anxiety sucks.
    Yeah, it's crazy. I just checked my blood pressure three times in a row. The top number remained steady at 120 but the bottom one went from the first reading of 97 to the last reading of 83. All in the space of a couple of minutes as I made an effort to relax myself! My pulse is high and has always been high. I think at rest my pulse is often in the mid to high 70's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Punky789 View Post
    Have you had your ears checked? When I am having issues with my inner ears I get very bad dizziness and vertigo.
    I haven't had my ears checked. I know infections and stuff can cause problems but I don't know if that's what's going on just because I don't have any other symptoms.

    ---

    I don't know what to do...

    This feels like it's never going to go away and that I'm just a ticking timebomb until something bad happens.

  9. #9
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    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    I will say that when I suffer my BPPV attacks (positional vertigo, very benign and safe to Google), even though I know what is happening it still ramps up my anxiety and leaves me anticipating the next attack. This causes low level “dizziness” even though I know I’m not dizzy, it’s the anticipatory anxiety causing it.

    The “extreme spinning” you describe in your first post sounds a lot like what happens to me during my worst BPPV attacks. Everything spinning and moving so badly I can’t even walk straight.

  10. #10
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    Re: Lightheadedness With No Cause?

    I get waves of dizziness and light-headedness a lot. Like A LOT. They eventually found out mine was coming from neck issues, which are extremely common in people these days, and easily treatable. It can be something as simple as overly tense neck muscles, or irritated nerves where your neck meets your head. They also mentioned I probably have BPPV, which is another completely non scary cause for dizziness.

    There are lots of nerves and tender areas in your neck that can seriously mess with your senses too. You might not be able to feel the tension on the surface, but it can be there, believe me! I could bring it on just from reaching up to reach something off a shelf, or turning my head too fast, and I'd suddenly feel all lightheaded. Sometimes my neck would be so tense, my ears would ring or pulse, my head would feel like it was getting pumped full of air, and I'd be convinced it was something awful!

    Anxiety is also a known cause of dizziness, but maybe in a less direct way. I think it's more of a domino effect. Anxiety causes tension in our minds, and our minds cause tension in our body. You might not really notice it at first, but your posture will change while you're feeling anxious. This can lead to muscle pain, cramps, more stress hormones getting released in your body, and just a general imbalance of everything, because your body is convinced that it's in danger.

    You seem to have had all the major things checked by medical professionals too.

    Blood pressure can cause dizziness, but its easily addressed if that's the case. You've mentioned that you only get elevated numbers when you're in the doctors office, so it's probably just a case of white coat syndrome. My home BP is 112/70 and 140/90 in the GP's chair!

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