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  • Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

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    Old 08-12-2011, 11:54 AM   #1
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    Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    I'm experiencing many symptoms which my regular doctor thinks is anxiety, however I'm not completely sold on the idea that ALL of my symptoms are anxiety related (though I am not disputing the anxiety, I know I have it) so I thought I'd throw my story out there and see if anyone can relate or has any ideas, suggestions, thoughts, etc.

    This will probably be long, but here goes.. My story/symptom timeline..

    Back in 2004-2005 I started feeling inner shakes/jitters, with occasional spacey feelings and occasional blood rush type feeling throughout my body. My doctor did some bloodwork and discovered I was Type 2 diabetic and also had fluxuating blood pressure. I was given meds for those. Once those issues were under control and I was still having those symptoms, he diagnosed me with GAD (general anxiety disorder) and put me on an anti-depressent/anxiety med, which seemed to work fine. Felt better.

    Flash forward to 2009. Not sure why, but I decided to just stop taking all my meds. Felt great. I've always been very overweight but gained while on meds, and during this time off meds I lost about 60lbs (Dr told me the one diabetes med was likely why I gained on it and lost when I stopped taking it)

    Move ahead to September 2010. Had a check up from my doctor with bloodwork just to check on things. Everything good, except my sugar levels were still high, so he put me on a different med for that. Cleared to stay off the blood pressure meds, as well as the anxiety meds since I felt ok without it (not great, but not horrible enough to take the meds). Towards the end of September, I was feeling some anxiety so I decided to go back on a low dose of my meds for that. It was also around this time I began to feel a slight puffiness feeling in my face, cheek area.

    December 2010 - Due to some stressful events in life from October to December, I decided to up my dosage of my anxiety meds since I was feeling the shaky, nervous feeling, and also had the lightheaded/woosiness in head/out of it feeling and like I had goosebumps inside. Also had the same blood rush feeling as above, though more frequent. Same feeling of cheek puffiness/fullness, maybe a little more now.

    March 2011 - Still didn’t feel right, all same symptoms as above. Cheek pressure feeling was felt more, started to feel heaviness in jaw, almost like I wanted to clench them. Also jaw sensation, like I ate something sour, but very dull feeling. Started to feel pressure in back of head and neck at same time. Blood rush feelings. Feeling a hunger type feeling high up towards chest area, even after eating. Weaned off the anxiety meds as directed by my dr. He thought maybe possible side effects to it, even though I was fine on it before.

    April 2011 - After 2 weeks weaning off my meds, and 2 weeks completely without, still getting worse, plus had withdrawl symptoms from being off the meds (brain zaps, mood changes, etc that I felt before when I came off cold turkey). Given another med to try for anxiety. On it about 1 week. Brain zaps went away, mood was helped some for the short time on it. Other feelings still getting worse. Goosebump feeling there constantly, morning to night, lightheaded/woosiness/out of it feeling still there, and feels worse at times. Many times my legs feel very heavy & weak when I get up from a sitting position and occasionally even when up walking around. Crawling type feeling (in addition to the goosebump feeling all over) in my right knee area, and occasionally on right side of my head (back/side). Worst episodes happen every couple days. Pattern I’ve noticed is that it starts with the intense blood rush type feeling through, then extreme lightheaded/woosiness/out of it & shakiness to the point where I feel like I could go into a seizure or pass out, but don’t. Makes me feel weak, heavy. Often times it’s at night, after dinner. Often makes me want to go to the E.R. And the past few times, I’ve had to turn the tv off, and cover my eyes as it seems to make it worse. The new med caused some chest pains. Told they should subside but I stopped taking it after a bad episode of the other symptoms. Chest pains went away once I stopped the meds. Sugar checks always look normal when I take them (before, during or after the episodes with the multiple symptoms). Blood pressure has been normal everytime at the doctor’s office.

    Towards the end of April into early May, I got a 2nd opinion. I was given yet another anxiety med and it gave me worse chest pains than the other one. Stopped taking it and all meds completely. Episodes continue to worsen. At this point, I heard about aspartame, and decided to cut out all food/drinks with this ingredient.

    May 2011 - No episodes of intense pressure on back, hot/cold feeling, extreme lightheadedness since cutting out aspartame. Still have all other symptoms. Still feeling worse gradually each day with the inner goosebumpy feeling, lightheaded (but not like during episodes), weakness, especially felt on left side, but feel weak all over. Balance seems more off than usual. Very itchy. Ear popping type pressure more often.

    From the end of May until July 2011 - I was very itchy all over, but particularly on my back, stomach, chest, and the back of my head. Had weakness all over but more noticeable on the left side, especially the legs. Still feeling unbalanced and uncoordinated (walking/reaching for something, but not debilitating). Some lightheadedness and goosebumpy/buzzy feeling as usual)

    Mid-Late July 2011 - Everything seems to be getting worse, progressing or new things popping up

    - Constant intense goosebumpy/inner shakes?
    - Almost constant lightheadedness? (brain woozy-ness? It's a feeling of like you're on the verge of passing out)
    - Almost constant light nauesea (like you would if you drink water too much too fast?)
    - Constant head/face pressure, fullness feeling (feels like your arm would when you have a tournequet tied around your arm)
    - Itchiness (back of head, back, stomach mostly – but all over)
    - physical weakness/heaviness feeling all over, sometimes feel like I can’t pick my feet up off the ground when walking, or like my legs are going to buckle under me
    - Eyes burning occasionally out of nowhere like I’ve spent hours opening my eyes in a pool
    - Sinus/allergy type of symptoms
    - Chin tremors/shakes (only in the chin, like it would if you were shivering)
    - Feeling in jaws like I’m going to start shivering (but don’t and not cold) – separate from above
    - Lightheaded worse briefly when looking up, possibly when looking left (or turning head left)
    - Sun/brightness bothersome when out driving (sometimes sound is also bothersome)
    - Concentration off a little when driving
    - Occasional thumb-sized(?) pressure pops in face (from inside, pushing out)
    - Heart pounding/racing
    - Face felt like it was full of pressure/liquid upon bending over and tucking chin – felt one day upon bending over a chair looking at a photo album
    - Itching right inside the ears
    - Chills, sensitive to cold at times
    - Occasional adrenaline rush feeling (in center of chest, like how it feels when you get really giddy or excited, but only lasts a second or two)

    August 2011 (present)... All of the above, plus in the past week or so, I have started to have ringing in my ear, which I notice at night when I lay down. I hear it sometimes during the day, but not sure if it's there all the time as maybe I just dont notice it. When I lay down, sometimes the ringing goes in and out in time with my heartbeat, or sometimes it's just a constant ringing. Couple days ago I was sitting at my computer and heard quick low buzzing kind of whooshing sound, then ringing, but it only last a couple seconds, but felt off afterwards. When I stand up and walk around, I get a fullness feeling in my head and pressure/thumping feeling in time with my heartbeat. Everytime I go out, I start feeling off.. particularly bad if I'm in the car idling at a stoplight or drive through, etc. In the last few days, I've been feeling stiff in my neck and shoulders. And the last 2 nights, I've been getting a strange pressure/hot/cold kind of sensation (so hard to describe) on the back of my head (in the area that would directly line up with the top of my ears). Best way I can kind of describe it is think of how your chest feels when you get really scared or desperate.. and put that feeling physically into the back of your head. It's horrible. Also, in the last couple weeks, trying to relax and watch tv is becoming horrible as well. On my best days, I can watch maybe 3 hours of tv in the evening before it starts to bother me and I start getting the intense off feeling. Somedays I can barely watch for 1/2 hour. Just typing all of this is starting to bother me.

    I don't have health insurance, so my doctor has only done all the basic bloodwork, and it has all looked fine. I was test for Lyme Disease as well and it was negative, but I know those are notorious for not being accurate. I asked for an MRI, which he ordered I think just to pacify me, but I didn't get it because I was quoted twice as much as I was expecting for it though I have since found a stand alone imaging center that charges a fraction of the cost, but I haven't yet asked for my dr to order it through them. I've had an EKG and that looked fine apparently.

    My doctor wants me to try yet another anxiety med again, which I'm fine with because I know some of this is probably just anxiety, but I'm not convinced there's not something else going on so here I am, typing a novel on these boards hoping someone might be able to offer some insight. I keep thinking brain disorder or an inner ear/sinus thing, I don't know! I am feeling so defeated and at my wits end. This is debilitating and I'm barely living my life. The thought of trying yet another anxiety med that takes weeks to kick in and then have it not work is torture for me.

    If you managed to read all of this, thank you.. Someone, anyone.. any ideas, thoughts or suggestions?

    Last edited by ohiogirl1; 08-13-2011 at 07:41 AM.

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    Old 08-13-2011, 03:17 AM   #2
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    Red face Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    Hi ohiogirl1 you have just discribed my 3 years of I'm shocked we have the same symtoms...minus the feeling in the face..I guess that's yet to come..but rest asured these are the same symtoms I'm having...the head sensations are the worst ever..I get them all the time..worst at the way I discribe it is like a whirlpool senastion and something moving in my head ...very weird...I get the hot rushs in by body right when the anxiety start...then my heart pounds out of chest at 1000 beats per min. Its the worst feeling...I get the same heaviness in my legs..I feel it more coming or going up and down stairs. I have been on lexapro...and busbar I hated caused me to clench my jaw to the point my teeth hurt...and sleeping forget about it...I thought I was going to die from not sleeping for 6 nites...I looked like a zombie ..the meds can cause insomnia and clenching of the jaws..your not alone....I also notice it gets worst for me when I'm about to get my monthly friend..I guess the hormones changes also effects how our body reacts to this ugly anxiety...let me know how its going and if any new changes...

    Last edited by Sam12873; 08-13-2011 at 03:42 AM.

    Old 08-13-2011, 08:09 AM   #3
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    Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    Hi Sam12873, thanks for the reply. I'm sorry you're dealing with the same stuff. Ugh, it's horrible and I don't wish this on my worst enemy.

    Are you taking anything for it now? In the beginning, I was on Lexapro, which worked fine. I've tried Buspar & Citalopram earlier this year, both of which gave me chest pains (I can't handle those pains at all so I stopped). I tried Lexapro a 2nd time, but had start up side effects the 2nd time which I didn't have the first time so my dr told me to stop. Now my Dr. wants me to try Cymbalta. I've kind of developed a fear of starting medications now, so I'm kind of scared to try it. I still have some Lexapro here and I'm tempted to give it another try since I've taken it once with no problem. I don't know. I just know I can't live like this.

    I have tried getting out and just not thinking about it, hanging out with friends, laughing, etc, but it never fails, I get hit right in the middle of it or a little while later with all these horrible symptoms. Same with just trying to relax and watch tv, etc. I cant ever seem to relax now. And I have zero energy. I start cleaning the house or washing dishes or something and in 5 min all I want to do is sit down. And even if I manage to keep at it, within an hour my symptoms all intensify or it gets brought on by doing anything. This is exhausting.

    If this is just anxiety, then I guess I've developed this health anxiety on top of just overall anxiety. I cannot wrap my brain around anxiety causing all of this. I still may try to see and ENT for the sinus/allergy/ear issues. Peace of mind I guess, if that's possible.

    Keep me posted on how you're doing. Sorry again you're dealing with it too, but it's also nice to know I'm not alone with these symptoms.

    Old 08-13-2011, 02:10 PM   #4
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    Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    I used to have ALL those symptoms, it was hell! I'm glad to say i'm about 90% better now, and only because I decided to finally kick the effexor I was on. All these anxiety/depression drugs will not cure you. You must take a natural route or forever be suffering with this ugly problem.

    After 5 years of effexor i was still having issues of anxiety (pressure in back of head/neck, sweating, dizzyness, lightheadedness), on top of that it made me gain 30lbs. I had enough, and finallly decided to wean off this drug over a period of about 2 months.

    When I first got off the drug, i used rhodiola rosea to combat that withdrawal effects. It did help at first, but then stopped spent the next couple years looking for an answer, but taking supplements that helped somewhat but not completely.

    I finally stumbled upon the sota bio tuner. It uses electrical stimulation to regulate your brain and hormonal system. After about 5 weeks I was about 80% better. Most of the symptoms of anxiety were gone. My sweating was reduced severely, this was the only thing that worked for this, so it does work on your hormonal system.

    If you do try it, give it some time, it's not a quick instant fix, but it works.

    I am an avid promoter of this device now since it's the only thing that really worked for me.

    Now in combination with daily meditation, I feel almost totally back to my old self.
    If you want to know more, just ask. You can get better! Oh yes, and eliminate all processed chemical foods as much as possible, especially anything that contains msg or aspartame. These will make your symptoms worse.

    Last edited by moderator2; 08-13-2011 at 02:13 PM. Reason: please do not post sites that sell products or services

    Old 08-14-2011, 01:21 AM   #5
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    Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    Hey ohiogirl1..right now I'm taking nothing..I hate meds ! Lexapro I was just on for a month messed me up big time..with headachs and clenching my jaw and the bad insomnia...busbar a took for a month after stopping lex..I hated it...that too gave insomnia.I have been tring to fight the symtoms on my own..can you tell me , the feeling you feel in your head is it like how I dicribed it ? And how often do you get it ? Mine for some weird reason gets worst at night. I also notice when I eat and I get full..I start to feel like an attack is around the corner.does that happen to you to ?...your right in a way knowing there is someone out there who has the same symtons as you makes it less scary I guess..when I get that feeling in my head much comes to my cancer god fobid...but that's what comes to my mind..because all my life I was healthy untill this stupid anxeity decided to come into my life..I get these attacts like 3 times a months ..the worst that I have had it lasted 2 weeks with depression and that's when I went to a neuro and he gave me lexapro..when you get an attack what exactly happens...and how long does it last ?..I really hope we over come this....I know when an attack matter how much you educate yourself it still feel scary and it still feel like you're dieing...then after it happens your body is still in shock from it and you stay shaking...take care and let me know how you're doing .

    Last edited by msmod; 08-14-2011 at 06:40 AM. Reason: Replaced text message, chat room letters with the propere words as per the posting rules. Ms_Mod

    Old 08-15-2011, 10:17 AM   #6
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    Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    Hey Sam12873, I had a horrible night last night. I woke up about an hour or 2 after falling asleep. Felt like a restless feeling and shakiness. Took about 2 hours to subside before I could fall asleep again. Ugh.

    The head feeling I get it similar to what you described. It varies sometimes. Sometimes it's a slight dizziness/lightheaded feeling, others it's just a feeling like I'm on the verge of blacking out. Other times it's just a physical heavinesss/icy-hot kind of feeling on the very back. It's all so hard to describe, I always question if I'm describing it right to my doctor. Lately I seem to be getting them *at least* once a day, in one way or another, and for various lengths of time. I can't really pinpoint a trigger, but over time they've gone from getting them mostly just at night, to during the day now too.

    I know what you mean about thinking it's cancer or something. Google doesn't help either. I have sat here for hours some days typing in combinations of symptoms, etc, and have gotten results ranging from just anxiety, to cancer, etc. It certainly doesn't help.

    I think my overall anxiety is there constantly, 24/7. I can feel it all day long, morning to night. At various times throughout the day it intensifies. Over the last few months, it has differed on how it starts, or has progressed differently I guess? Again, it's really hard to describe. Before it started with a blood rush feeling/wave throughout, then lightheaded/faint feeling, then shaky, and had what felt like enormous pressure on my head/shoulders/neck and an icy hot kind of feeling etc. However, coincidence or not, those bad episodes stopped once I stopped eating or drinking anything with aspartame in it. Those episodes were the worst. Lately, it's just random lightheaded feeling like I'm going to faint, a weakness/heaviness feeling, inner trembling/shakiness. Kind of similar to the above episodes, but not quite, and almost always there, but intensify at random times throughout the day. And whether it's related or not, but I always feel like I have some slight sinus or cold symptoms going on (though I've never had a problem with that in the past), and my anxiety symptoms always seem to get worse, when those do (which is part of the reason I'm still thinking a trip to an ENT might be worthwhile.).

    I still haven't started my meds yet, I don't know why I'm so scared to!! Ugh!

    I hope things are going ok for you and you had a decent weekend. Mine was spent at home as usual dealing with this stuff!

    Last edited by ohiogirl1; 08-15-2011 at 10:20 AM.

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    Old 09-22-2011, 08:02 AM   #7
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    Re: Lightheaded, faintness, head pressure + other symptoms? Anxiety? Brain? Ear?

    Hi Ladies, Im sorry you're going through this, but it's nice to know im not alone.. I have similar things going on. I am working right now, but feel like i am barely holding it togeather. Scared to take the kids places for fear of passing out at the wheel.

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