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migraine

One Who Listens (OWL)

People with vestibular disorders often wish for someone who will listen to them: listen with empathy – not judgement, listen with a deep knowledge – not dismissing their concerns, and listen with understanding for the emotional impact vestibular disorders have brought to their lives. The OWL Award recognizes two individuals and one organization for their contribution to the healing power of listening.

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Medication

The use of medication in treating vestibular disorders depends on whether the vestibular system dysfunction is in an initial or acute phase (lasting up to 5 days) or chronic phase (ongoing).

During the acute phase, and when other illnesses have been ruled out, medications that may be prescribed include vestibular suppressants to reduce motion sickness or anti-emetics to reduce nausea. Vestibular suppressants include three general drug classes: anticholinergics, antihistamines, and benzodiazepines. Examples of vestibular suppressants are meclizine and dimenhydinate (antihistamine-anticholinergics) and lorazepam and diazepam (benzodiazepines).

Other medications that may be prescribed are steroids (e.g., prednisone), antiviral drugs (e.g., acyclovir), or antibiotics (e.g., amoxicillin) if a middle ear infection is present. If nausea has been severe enough to cause excessive dehydration, intravenous fluids may be given.

During the chronic phase, symptoms must be actively experienced without interference in order for the brain to adjust, a process called vestibular compensation. Any medication that makes the brain sleepy, including all vestibular suppressants, can slow down or stop the process of compensation. Therefore, they are often not appropriate for long-term use. Physicians generally find that most patients who fail to compensate are either strictly avoiding certain movements, using vestibular suppressants daily, or both.

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Travel Strategies

Some common questions about the effects of travel on people with vestibular dysfunction include:

“Will travel increase symptoms?”
“Should I avoid travel?”
“What is the best form of travel?”
“What can I do to minimize discomfort while traveling?”

Travel conditions that may be problematic for a person with a vestibular disorder include those that involve exposure to rapid altitude or pressure changes, certain motion patterns, or disturbing lighting. Travel decisions that accommodate a person’s vestibular disorder will depend on the type of vestibular disorder, the method of transportation (e.g., train, boat, airplane, automobile), and the conditions and planned activities at the destination.

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Central Vestibular Disorders

Dizziness can be caused by a dysfunction in the peripheral vestibular system (the labyrinth of the inner ear, and the pathways/nerves connecting to the brainstem) or the central vestibular system (the brain and brainstem). This article provides an overview of how to differentiate peripheral from central vestibular disorders.

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Migraine Glasses: Can They Help Me Feel Less Pain?

If you get migraine headaches, there’s about a 90% chance that you also have photophobia, or extreme light sensitivity. In fact, photophobia and migraine have a close enough relationship that light sensitivity has become part

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Migraine Awareness Day

On June 21st AMD celebrates its first annual migraine awareness day to bring this disease to a higher level of public consciousness and eliminate the stigma associated with it.On June 21, the longest day of the

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Vestibular Migraine Coping Strategies

FINDING TREATMENT AND SUPPORT FOR COPING WITH VESTIBULAR MIGRAINE Vestibular migraine patients, Kayla McCain and Alicia Wolf, share their tips for coping with vestibular migraine. When an individual is first diagnosed with vestibular migraine it

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Light Sensitivity Causes My Scariest Vestibular Migraine Symptoms

By Kayla McCain, VeDA Ambassador While dizziness was definitely the symptom that changed my life as I knew it, light sensitivity and migraine aura wasn’t far behind it. For me, light sensitivity is often the

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Mal de Débarquement

Mal de Debarquement Syndrome (MdDS) is an illusion of movement felt as an aftereffect of travel or other novel movements, such as sleeping on a waterbed, which continues even after the source of the motion is no longer present, and sometimes become chronic.

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