Hello, this is my first time writing on here, and I write because I am quite frightened by my own body this past week.
Eight days ago, I began to feel like the images I was seeing (real life) before my eyes were more like paintings, or like watching a movie. I felt very disconnected from the world around me, like even my own talking was startling to me. I kept telling my friends it felt like I was watching the world around me through someone else's eyes. It all seemed like such strange and unreal symptoms, so I brushed them aside. I'm a teacher, and I don't have much leave, nor wanted to take off, so I just pressed forward.
By the 3rd day of symptoms, I was seeing the floor moving beneath me, as if it was tilting. Then I could hardly bare to watch the students around me playing because it was too nauseating. A coworker urged me to see my doctor, as none of this was "normal". So I went to the doctor the 4th day of symptoms, and he diagnosed all of my symptoms as vertigo, most commonly caused by an inner ear infection, said it was viral so there's no medication. He told me to take an anti-motion-sickness medication and Allegra D.
Throughout all of that time, I was extremely tired. I slept 15 hours at a time, and found it more difficult than usual to wake up in the morning. I was still tired and wanted to keep sleeping even after 15 hours of sleep. When I returned from the doctor, I slept a lot and figured I would go to work the next day.
The 5th day of symptoms I went to work and felt awful. I told my coworkers I felt nauseous and would just try to push through the day. Within an hour of being at work, I felt as if there was no possible way I would be able to teach all day. Each component of a lesson felt like hours because of how dizzy/nauseous I felt. I didn't participate in routine activities with my students, and could barely watch them do it because it made me feel worse- dizzy and nauseous. I felt very disoriented and disconnected from my students- again like I was watching them through someone else's eyes, or through a lens, pane of glass- not my own eyes.
My principal walked in, and I asked to be dismissed. When I was talking with her, she was extremely kind and understanding- but I began crying uncontrollably. I attributed this to my fear of the way I felt. I was not in control of my own body and didn't understand what was happening. I felt like I was definitely going to pass out. The school nurse looked me over, and my heartrate was 136, I was beat red in the face (minutes before, I was told I was ghostly pale) but all other vital signs were normal. The school nurse strongly believed I had a panic attack, as I was hyperventilating, crying and heart was racing and I couldn't control myself. (I later read this is a symptom of labrynthitis). I was sent to the hospital, where I was again told it was a case of vertigo caused by an inner ear infection.
Now it has been 8 days and I have not gone back to work. Symptoms have gotten worse. I cannot cook a meal or go to the store. I can hardly function. There are times (like now) when I can sit up and type, and other times when all I can do is lay, but even then the room is spinning. When I lay in my bed I feel like I am sinking deep into it, there is a harsh static noise in my ears and I feel like I'm fading from the world around me. When I try to walk around, I feel extremely drunk. I feel disillusioned, and like I have to control every movement my body makes, so as not to fall. I can strongly feel my feet hitting the ground, and each step is like I'm walking on thick air or something.
This morning I saw an ENT. I had a hearing test done, and thankfully there is no hearing loss. He said that I have atypical symptoms of an inner ear infection, and ordered an MRI and VNG. However, from reading online- these symptoms seem typical of an inner ear infection, specifically labrynthitis.
If anyone has had/has labrynthitis, or something like I have described, I woudl appreciate your comments. It is so scary and the worst is I have been given no "time frame" to get better. It is debilitating so that I cannot work, and I am worried about income- From what I've read online, this could take months to years to recover. It's only been 8 days so I feel I cannot complain too much, but I'm worried for what is to come.
The following user gives a hug of support to nicoleodc: Seekingpeace12 (02-01-2013)
Hi Nicoleodc, I know exactly what you are going through, I've had the same symptoms you are describing and was diagnosed with Viral Laberynthitis I was given Prochlorperazine Maleate 5mg which I took for 3 weeks and I stopped on Dr's recommendation. It made me feel very drowsy, all I wanted to do was to go to bed and close my eyes and forget about the world, I spend 5 weeks off work. During my time at home I read a lot about this illness, it made me very tearful and I was crying for everything so I decided to stop doing that. Then one day when I didn't feel too bad I started to organise my desk and found a Tai Chi DVD (I bought it ages ago and never had the time to use it) so I thought its gentle it might do me good, I've been doing Tai Chi frequently and most of all when I feel wobbly and shaky, I do breathing exercises as well and that helps a lot when I get stress of over excited. I was worried about the financial side of things so I went back to work, I normally work 39 hours a week, but I talked to my Doctor and she suggested doing part-time hours because it was too much after me been so poorly, I was not feeling too confident and often quite weepy, even frightened, it was a good way of going back to work, this is my fourth week of doing part-time hours and to be honest with you, I've had more good days than bad ones x