What is this crazy sensation? Vestibular system overworked?

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History: I have history of vertigo. Dx with atypical Meniere's Disease 06/16.

**Problem: When I close my eyes to fall asleep, it feels as if - for a half second - that I drop. It wakes me up every time. It's not the typical "falling while asleep" feeling and can happen multiple times in a minute. It literally feels as if my eyes or my body has dropped. It's worse in the complete dark.

I'm on family vacation & have been taking antivert aka meclizine. I've never really used it in the past as it didn't work but the last 2 days it's been helping. Is it possible that the antivert suppressed my vestibular system too much that when it wore off, it came back with a vengeance? I've had this "drop" feeling many many times before but this time it was way worse than usual.

Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you.

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    I have found that anytime I take something that affects the vestibular system it changes how my brain may interpret things.  What used to not have any side effects for me now seems to magnify them.  I'm thinking that the meclizine is suppressing your vestibular system enough that your brain is having to try to adjust on the fly, so to speak.  That coupled with what may be a different environment for you to adjust to as well.  I had those momentary, split second, drop startle type feelings early on.  I also have them occasionally still.

    • Posted

      That makes sense, thank you! I usually don't take anything for it and just deal - but I was determined to have fun this week so I thought I'd try it.

      I'll stick to just dealing with it lol

  • Posted

    I have possibly VM. ( vestibular migraine) it does not always cause headaches but I feel weird and dizzy most of the time. I too have what you describe weird d falling body movements when trying to fall asleep. It is way worse on my back try on your stomach. I do not take meclizine or any meds because of suppressing. I don't think it is the medicine at all because I have the exact thing!!!! It also causes heart palpitations because it's such a scary sensation.

    • Posted

      Yes I was having palps last night too because of it! I was starting to worry. I also have what I think are VMs and I have an appt w a migraine specialist in a few months. I'll let u know what they say!! I'm sorry you're having these but I'm glad we're not alone!

    • Posted

      Yes definitely let me know how you come along. I see a neurologist in September. Seriously try sleeping on your stomach and grip your pillow it makes them less severe. I remember the days I could lay in bed and think about what I done that that day. Not anymore because of the brain and body shifts.. my body doesn't move just my insides like I'm falling over and over. Exhausting..,,,,

  • Posted


    Subjective visual vertical tests are conducted to determine the abnormal subjective tilt in an individual. In normal conditions, the ability to perceive verticality in an individual is quite good. Verticality is dependent on signals from visual, vestibular and somatosensory systems. Other times, verticality may also depend on the functioning of the central nervous system. But, the judgment of verticality is distorted when there is otolith dysfunction.

    Somatosensory system is the part of the sensory system that is concerned with touch, pressure, pain, temperature, position, movement, and vibration which arise from the muscles, joints, skin, and fascia.

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