Have you ever stood up too fast after sitting for a long time and had everything seem slightly off and out of focus for a short while? Was it an unpleasant feeling that you were glad to have end after a couple minutes?
Now imagine having that feeling when you first wake up in the morning … only it doesn’t go away. All day long the whole world seems fuzzy and off kilter. At night you go to bed hoping that you will feel better the next day, but as soon as you wake up you can tell things still aren’t right.
It’s a scary and confusing feeling, but for me it was a sign of magnesium deficiency. Having survived it I’ve put together some tips for how to cope as well as how taking magnesium for dizziness cured it completely for me.
Dizziness Is A Vague Symptom
When my symptoms first started I would tell my doctors I was feeling dizzy and their first response was always to ask me to be more specific, which was odd to me because I thought I was being specific.
As a result I found out the hard way that dizziness is a difficult symptom for doctors to diagnose:
- it is a common symptom for a number of different ailments
- it can be experienced in many different ways
One of the big differences is whether or not the room feels like it is ‘spinning’. This is called vertigo which is a very disorienting feeling, sometimes to the point of nausea.
Another difference is whether or not you feel dizzy only when moving your head or body, or if you feel more dizzy when lying down vs sitting up or vice versa.
Logging Your Life: Track Your Dizziness Symptoms
Because there are so many variations of dizziness it is important to capture as much detail as you can.
Try to think about the best way to describe your dizziness. The more specific you are about your symptoms the more likely it is your doctor can help.
In order to gather more detail about my dizziness my doctor recommended that I keep a daily log of my symptoms.
Try to pay closer attention to what you are experiencing as well as possible triggers:
- When did your dizziness start? How long did it last? How did it feel? If it has been occurring for a while try to remember what you were doing when it first started.
- What makes the dizziness feel worse? What makes it feel better? Try to be specific.
- What have you been eating and drinking each day? Record each meal along with the time.
- How have you been sleeping? Are you able to keep a regular sleep schedule?
- What medications are you taking? What vitamin supplements? Record times for these as well.
Try to be as specific and detailed as possible about each day. It may seem tedious or silly but the results are very real: every time I’ve taken a log of my symptoms to a doctor they were able to help me get better faster.
Coping With Dizziness: Relax By Slowing Your Breathing
Before my dizziness was cured I did find one tactic that helped me cope with my dizziness: controlling my breathing.
In the process of Googling for causes of anxiety and dizziness I came across what is called the 7-11 technique which is a method of slowing your breathing by counting the seconds in between inhaling and exhaling:
- Breathe in slowly, counting for 7 seconds
- Breathe out slowly, counting for 11 seconds
While it didn’t completely remove my symptoms it did take the edge off my dizziness, and as a bonus it also helped me manage my anxiety.
It is definitely a challenge when you first try it though as you are basically asking your body to take in less air than it is used to.
Just try to stay focused and calm, and remember that even though you are breathing less your body is actually getting more oxygen.
After a few minutes your breathing should relax naturally as your body adjusts, and the feeling of calm that comes with it is worth the initial struggle.
Magnesium And Dizziness
Surprisingly, when I went to the neurologist for my dizziness he recommended I start a magnesium supplement.
This wasn’t the result I expected but he was absolutely right. After taking magnesium for a while I started feeling better than I had in a really long time. My dizziness was gone!
It turns out that dizziness can be one of the (many) symptoms of magnesium deficiency.
Indeed, I recently came across a great book called The Magnesium Miracle by Dr. Carolyn Dean which goes into detail about the many good things magnesium does for us as well as what can happen if our levels get too low. It is worth checking out if you want to know more about the health benefits of magnesium.
Patience is a Virtue … and Required
Whether or not your dizziness is caused by magnesium deficiency, remember to be patient.
It may take a while to get a diagnosis, so make sure you are prepared for every doctor’s appointment. Have your log with you and be ready to describe your symptoms as best you can.
And if and it turns out you are magnesium deficient like I was, remember that it took a long time for your body to become depleted so it is only natural that it will take a while to build your magnesium levels back up to normal.
Once I started taking my magnesium, I did start to feel better in a couple days but I didn’t return to my usual self for a couple months.
So take it one day at a time, cope as best you can while you prepare for your appointments, and each day should be better than the last!