I'm a 24 year old female. Whenever I hear sounds like bells or echoes, or if I feel vibrations (from a piece of metal I'm touching or a guitar string, for example), I get a feeling that I can only describe as an extreme vertigo, and it's sometimes so bad that I want to kill myself. I've been this way as long as I can remember. This is particularly horrible since I have recently been subject to guitar playing and outdoor wind chimes in close proximity. I usually can't even think of the word "bell" without having a panic attack. I have no hearing loss, no tinnitus, and most of the time I'm totally fine. It's just very hard to avoid certain musical instruments, echo-y spaces, metal stairs, etc for the rest of my life. Have you heard of such a thing before? Thank you!!
I might add that each incident doesn't last super long, maybe a few minutes (basically until I can relax enough to get my mind on something else). Sometimes I can sense it coming, and if I immediately start doing something else, I'll never get the full feeling.
Welcome to the MedHelp forum!
Apart from anxiety and panic disorder, increased sensitivity to sound is seen in migraine headaches, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, TMJ disorders, Lyme’s disease, post traumatic stress disorder, and ear damage by toxins and medications.
You need to consult your PCP for primary examination followed by proper referral to a psychiatrist, neurologist and ENT. Take care!
I don't have any answers for you, unfortunately :-) I just wanted to let you know that I've had similar experiences, though mine seem very episodal - it comes and goes, and most of the time I'm absolutely fine.
I've been tested for brain tumours, MS, other neurological disorders etc, all clear thankfully. They suggested it might be Meniere's. After 9 years I haven't lost any hearing, so I think that may rule out Meniere's also.
When I'm feeling "that way" I take Serc. This is a beta-histamine, and seems to help keep the severity down for me, if I'm desperate I'll take a 1/2 pill of gravol (though makes me sleepy). The vertigo used to be absolutely horrific (tire swing spinning as fast as possible for up to 4 hrs at a time), and vibrations and other sounds would trigger me. Vertical blinds can also trigger this. I know to be more careful when I'm feeling like my head is one of those floating compasses - like the inside of my head moves at a different speed to the outside of my head.
I do have challenges with anxiety, and whether this is somehow related (wasn't really dealing with anxiety provoking situations at the time) I'm not sure. I also suffer migraines occasioanlly...In the end I've decided not to worry about an answer (as for me there doesn't seem to be one), they've tested for all the scary things and I'm all clear. So I just consider this one of my quirks and keep my serc on hand.
***Make sure that they check on all those things for you (like in doctornee medical's post), as this can be a pretty big red flag for other significant problems. I wish you luck!!
Thanks for your responses!!! It's definitely nice to hear that someone else is going through something similar. I always felt like a freak!
I haven't seen a doctor yet, but it's been suggested by 2 friends currently in medical school (independently, on different occasions) that I have vestibular hyperacusis that is specific to those types of sounds that are chimey or echo-y. I've read that little is known about it so there are very few, if any, treatments available at this point. I better go to the doctor to rule out all the other scary illnesses, but once I do that, then I guess I'll at least have a name for this craziness in my head!
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