Monday, April 25, 2016

Tumbles

Sunday I became inexplicably tangled in my laptop cord while trying to leave my bedroom. I often have trouble with my right foot, and this time was no different. While trying to keep myself from falling, I mangled my right toes…and I still fell. (I have made the editorial decision not to share photos of my purple-bruised toes. You're welcome.)

Image result for dysautonomia and fall risk

Proprioception is how your body knows where it is in space. You don’t have to look at your feet when you walk. They know where they are and what they are doing without input from your eyes. My autonomic neuropathy causes impaired proprioception, and this leads to imbalance, and sometimes…falls.

Other people with disease under the dysautonomia umbrella fall because they faint. This is ultimately a good thing. It’s a way for the brain to be sure it gets the necessary blood supply. When I had my tilt table test, my blood pressure was dangerously low, but I never fainted.

This is not a good thing.

While I don’t like the idea of my head meeting concrete, I love the idea of a blood supply to my brain. I have to listen extra hard to my body because wearing a blood pressure monitor 24/7 is not an option, but I need to know when I should get low and flat.

I have to share that the Irish Dysautonomia Awareness mascot is the Fainting Goat. Hilarious! (They have a store if you want to support them and wear a fainting goat.)

Image result for irish dysautonomia awareness goat

Another thing that I forget is that I can't do flips or spins or other things that used to bring my ten-year-old-masquerading-as-an-adult-self joy. I did this in the pool to learn my lesson - because I like to do things the hard way. Luckily, my husband was there and pulled my dumb ass out of the water.

I had to give up heels, too. And rollercoasters. Neither of which I was using much, anyway, so it's cool.

Physical therapy has been a big benefit to my balance problems. I did exercises to help me turn my head while walking without stumbling or becoming nauseated. As part of this therapy, I watched eye-brain training videos (optokinetic stimulation) on youtube.com.

If you have a chronic illness that involves balance issues, I highly recommend PT.

Image result for funny picture about fainting and dysautonomia

Do you have any funny looking back at it, but it hurt at the time stories?

4 comments:

  1. Kudos for an exceptional post. You talk about a serious condition in a lighthearted and effective way, a difficult thing to achieve. Thanks for sharing.

    Nilanjana.
    Ninja Minion, A-Z 2016
    Madly-in-Verse

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    1. Thank you! I appreciate you taking time to stay and comment. :)

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  2. I'm a little confused because both "T" and "I" share a time stamp of April 25, but clicking "Newer post" went from I to T so I feel I'm missing a huge chunk I don't know how to get to >.<

    I HIGHLY appreciate the lack of a bruised toe pic. As someone who doesn't much like feet to begin with, well... yeah... I get squeamish!

    I'm not sure I would handle that ailment. It seems so incredibly dangerous to just suddenly faint (like Narcolepsy almost?), except is there anything you take for it (well the fainting is what's good here, but still)? Or is it mainly by Physical Therapy?

    I do feel like we all tend to have this issue now and again :p but I'm thankful for nothing dipping into the realm of extremes. Though, I don't do heels or rollercoasters either at the moment! My closest experiences is when I stretch really big and go completely light headed where I slowly fall to the ground (mostly controlled) until it passes. This may not even be remotely similar, sorry...

    I'm in agreement with Nilan about how well you put lighthearted humor into serious topics. It's not always possible, but it's my preference, and I tend to do the same.

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    1. Thank you. It was a challenge to keep things light, but informative.
      I'm not sure what the deal is with the time stamps and things. I had another friend notice it, too. If you go to the Introduction post, each post is its own link. That should help.
      Thanks for taking the time to read through. The valsalva-type lightheadedness that you experience with that stretch is similar. I feel that way when I stand up.
      There are medicines that treat both the heart rate and blood pressure, and that's how I'm able to get about four hours of upright time a day before I get symptomatic.

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