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 Stumbling ,Tripping , Falling a lot lately - why?
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positivevibes

204 Posts

Posted - 05/13/2008 :  23:19:36  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
OK guys, this kinda scares me. Again tonight, I misjudged what was under my feet and I stumbled. Fortunately this time nothing happened; I caught myself. Of course my back is now a bit achy but I know it will pass. The thing is, all evening I kept thinking about that incident last week when I fell in the parking lot and trying to be extra careful while I was out and about (be aware of what's under my feet and around me). It's weird -- like my spacial perception is "off" somehow.

This is the third or fourth time in the past month that this has happened to me.

The first time, I was returning some books to the library and my big Ugg boot "caught" on a curb I didn't realize was there (I thought I was walking in the curb cut but I wasn't) I stumbled and caught myself.

The second time I was walking with my husband. We were talking and crossing the street downtown. I didn't realize there was a curb with a down-step ahead of me and I jarred my body a bit when my foot stepped lower than I had perceived it should.

The third time was last week, a very bad fall I took in a supermarket parking lot. I was wearing my sneakers with orthotics in them. Again, I didn't realize that there was a curb beneath my feet by the shopping cart return area.

And the fourth time was tonight. I was wearing sneaker clog shoes. I was coming up the 2 stairs in front of my house and for some reason I misjudged the step and stumbled, falling forward. I caught myself with my hands, so I didn't actually fall down but I could have. I have walked up and down those stairs hundreds of times! What gives?!

Now I have to tell you, this is starting to worry me. I'm usually not clumsy like this. For the record, you should know that I'm 47 and female and my only major health problem is Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, which is under control. And TMS, of course.

I've been thinking of some logical reasons for this stumbling and falling. They are:

* My vision is definitely changing. I think I may need bifocals or stronger reading glasses. Usually I wear glasses for distance, but in the past few years I have started needing them for reading. Lately I find that I need them more than previously. I haven't had an eye exam in about a year, so I think I'll go get my eyes checked since I'm due for one, anyway. I have an astigmatism, but I'm not sure if that makes a difference.

* I had a nasty sinus infection in April, for which I took antibiotics. I had a bad lingering cough (a lot of phlegm) and I began to wonder if perhaps the infection hadn't actually been totally cleared up. If this is true, then it could be affecting my balance.

* Fatigue. The last two times this happened I was tired, including tonight. AND, tonight I am coming down with a little cold and my head is a bit stuffed up.

* Maybe a menopause or pre-menopause symptom?

* My thyroid got out of whack and I've been taking a stronger dose of Synthroid for the past several months. Maybe my TSH is too much into the hyper zone (but I don't feel shakey or any other symptoms of getting too hyper-thyroid).

Any ideas what may be going on? I certainly don't want to jump to conclusions and think that I'm getting a neurological or muscular problem.

Edited by - positivevibes on 05/13/2008 23:38:42

skizzik

USA
772 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  04:33:17  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
wow, your'e making me realize there are definitely times in my life where I'm clumsy, stumbling, etc.

I chalked it up to being tall and lanky, but I realize most of the time I'm fine as far as balance is concerned.

IMO, I'd chalk it up as a symptom until proven otherwise (an incident a week seems more like it's making you paranoid and perpetuating it.) Relax and report/follow up back to this thread in 30 days.
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armchairlinguist

USA
1373 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  08:38:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
The thing is, all evening I kept thinking about that incident last week when I fell in the parking lot and trying to be extra careful while I was out and about (be aware of what's under my feet and around me). It's weird -- like my spacial perception is "off" somehow.



I sense signs that these incidents are causing you to become obsessive about them as a variant form of TMS.

It's a great idea to get your eyes checked. Other than that, I'd say relax, enjoy life, and stop stressing. Falls happen sometimes.

--
It's not 100% belief that's required, but 100% commitment.
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mizlorinj

USA
490 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  08:47:17  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow, positive vibes, I'd say that's a lot of overthinking! And you tend to go with what could be PHYSICALLY an issue again (sinus infection, fatigue, etc.). . .
. . . whereas I go with what is the emotional component since my post TMS crash-course learning shows me so much is emotional vs. physical
I realize it's a hard adjustment to make since we are all brought up and conditioned to look for the physical causes.

Edited by - mizlorinj on 05/14/2008 08:50:04
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HellNY

130 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  09:10:54  Show Profile  Reply with Quote


Every once in a while I come back to check for new ideas and experiences on the forum, and I do stumble on posts such as this.

Positivevibes, your post shows the almost textbook, "classic" mix of TMS, obsessive and almost hypochondriachal thinking. This is not an insult, rather, Im trying to get you to see what you are doing.

With this post, and the other about how you fell in the packing lot, they both have enromous things in common. You obsess over very little detail about what happens to you, what it might mean, and catastrophize about the possibilities. Then you do on an get into the "bullet points" (usually numbered or with asterisks) which is your "logical analysis" section which is really more obsessing.

This is exactly what TMS is. The very acts of thinking these things are what drives th syndrome.

Just think about it. If you ever doubt whats going on, compare yourself to what most "normal" folsk do. When the average person on the street falls in the parking lot, do they go to the internet and post all the details with analysis of what it might mean and how maybe something is broken etc? And then a few days later begin self diagnosing reasons for why they believe they fall, including multiple discourses into vision, menopause, fatigue and other "ailments" to explain the hypothesized "imbalance problem."

This is almost OCD. Its obsessive, even narcissistic. Its hypochondriachal. Its exactly the process of TMS happening on the page. IN real time.

I was just like you, so dont be offended. I still have TMS issues but they are far far less than they were when I first came here 6 months ago. One of the main things thats happened with me is I no longer think like this.

So at least think about it. Maybe step back and consider that the way to improve is to stop the thoughts and expressions you are engaging in.
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AmyAJJ

98 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  09:33:26  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
How about thinking of the stumbling and falls as similar to pain of TMS. So when the stumbling happens, ask yourself what could be a stressor or trigger in your life that you were just thinking about?

Just like in my situation I might think about one of my stressors and then I feel a twinge in my thigh, maybe sometimes for you you think of stressors and then you stumble on a step or whatever.

It's just a different way that the distraction principle could be in effect. Instead of creating a pain, I'll distract her from her emotions with this little wobble and that will really get her mind thinking about physical things instead of the emotional things.

Just an idea...
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AmyAJJ

98 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  09:35:00  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wanted to come back and say that I really hear you about being scared about it. I think it's good that you're giving voice to that so that emotion is lived in you and not stuffed away or repressed too. Tell your mind that you can handle being scared so there's no need for more distractions to take you away from your emotions. It's okay to be scared.
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drziggles

USA
292 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  15:11:19  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You need to see a neurologist! Not everything is TMS, and four falls from tripping over things in a brief period of time suggests that a neurological evaluation should be performed to rule out other causes.
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positivevibes

204 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  18:19:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree that I tend to obsess and catastrophize events. It's a part of my nature that I'm trying very hard to change. I'm not insulted at all that you pointed this out. In fact, you are right.

Even so, tripping and falling 4 times in the past month is extremely weird for me. Everyone trips or stumbles once in a while. So either it's "something" or it's "just a coincidence". If it's "something," it could be TMS or it could be something else that is physically based.

When I'm over this stupid head cold I'm going to get my eyes checked. I'm sure that my vision has changed and I'm due for an exam anyway. I expect that I'll need a new prescription.

If new glasses don't solve the problem, and if I continue to stumble or fall more than usual I'll probably go to my ENT doctor to see whether I have any sort of inner ear or sinus issue. Like I said, I never felt that I totally got over that sinus infection last month.

And if that all checks out normally and I continue to have problems, I'll consider discussing this with my regular doctor or possibly a neurologist. But I don't want to jump to conclusions. It's just very strange and abnormal for me to continue tripping over things. And God knows, it is not fun to get hurt from stuff like that.

As far as what stressors could have caused this (TMS-wise), at each time I really wasn't thinking about anything stressful or serious. I was just going about my day. Maybe I was distracted by thinking about what I needed to do next, and wasn't paying close enough attention to the ground beneath my feet. I dunno.

If this is all just a TMS symptom, I think I can attribute it to my recent phone sessions with Dr. Bloch. Three of the "trips" occurred after I spoke with him. My mind "knows" that I'm actively working on changing things and maybe this is its way of resisting. I've already "told my brain" very sternly that I will not stand for any more dirty tricks!

Edited by - positivevibes on 05/14/2008 18:25:15
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HellNY

130 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  21:56:14  Show Profile  Reply with Quote


Dr. Ziggles -

Far be it from me to disagree with a Dr., but if you look at PositiveVibes post, she did not fall 4 times. She fell once. The two other were "almost falls" which she caiught herself. The last was one of the "step down and jar your body because you didnt realize a lower step was there.' This was not a fall either. People often do that, but I submit she is selectively remembering these events and focusing on them as abnormla. IN fact what she describes is relatively normal life.

Once again, how many people post about "almost falls." One was a fall. The other three never actually even happened.

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positivevibes

204 Posts

Posted - 05/14/2008 :  23:51:20  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by HellNY



Dr. Ziggles -

Far be it from me to disagree with a Dr., but if you look at PositiveVibes post, she did not fall 4 times. She fell once. The two other were "almost falls" which she caiught herself. The last was one of the "step down and jar your body because you didnt realize a lower step was there.' This was not a fall either. People often do that, but I submit she is selectively remembering these events and focusing on them as abnormla. IN fact what she describes is relatively normal life.

Once again, how many people post about "almost falls." One was a fall. The other three never actually even happened.





Actually 2 of the 4 times I came very close to falling. I was just lucky that I was able to regain my balance or catch myself on something. One time, I did actually fall down very hard. And the 4th time was just a mis-step that jarred my body quite a bit because it was from a high curb.

Sorry, but I have to disagree that I'm describing normal life. A little stumble here and there is normal, IMO. Continuing to misjudge what is under my feet and almost falling on my face isn't normal for me. Once in a while I may bump into stuff or stumble over something my kids put on the floor in my house. But stumbling and tripping while I'm walking outside -- not realizing where curbs or steps are -- usually doesn't happen.
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Dave

USA
1786 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2008 :  07:50:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by HellNY
Far be it from me to disagree with a Dr...

Are you suggesting not to see a doctor? I can really find no reason to dissuade someone from following this sound advice.

There is no reason to take any chances. If you have neurological symptoms it is imperative to rule out a tumor or other cause.
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HellNY

130 Posts

Posted - 05/15/2008 :  13:21:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dave

quote:
Originally posted by HellNY
Far be it from me to disagree with a Dr...

Are you suggesting not to see a doctor? I can really find no reason to dissuade someone from following this sound advice.

There is no reason to take any chances. If you have neurological symptoms it is imperative to rule out a tumor or other cause.



No. Im not dissuading her from anything. Just stating my opinion. The Dr. stated that she had 4 falls when she had one. Thats all.

Edited by - HellNY on 05/15/2008 13:25:24
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