Christmas, for most, is full of joy and good cheer. The loud noise of family singing and chattering, fairy lights flashing on the tree and the excitement of opening presents. Now imagine all this being a trigger to ending up with severe imbalance and dizziness, feeling nauseous and being sick for hours, experiencing loud ringing in your ears, a build-up of pressure in your head and fluctuating hearing loss. All this just because of a few minutes of living life 'like a normal person'. These symptoms can happen at any time with no specific trigger and can last for hours to days; making day to day activities like cooking, cleaning, driving and taking the children to school impossible to achieve.
One of our members explains their story: "My symptoms started in October 2011 as weird and unexplained dizzy spells. The disease quickly intensified and soon I was struggling to carry out everyday activities due to the severe attacks of dizziness, sickness, tinnitus and aural fullness, as well as losing hearing in the right ear. It was all very, very frightening and upsetting, I never knew when an attack would strike; I lived in fear and became isolated. I wanted answers and needed help."
Unfortunately, it doesn't just affect the person living with a vestibular disorder but also their loved ones: "This was such a difficult time for my husband too. It put a huge strain on our relationship. He told me once that it was heart-breaking watching someone you love go through such pain, we had to stop doing many things we enjoyed together."
They were told about the Meniere's Society and through the Society, about a drug trial in need of participants. She was relieved to find out she was a suitable candidate. From here the long road back to recovery started: "It's not been easy for me to share my story, it has brought back memories of a very difficult time in my life around which I have great fear and anxiety, but my desire to show my gratitude to the Ménière's Society is far bigger than my fear. Thank you, Meniere's Society, for funding the trial and providing the means for my return to living, for which I will be eternally grateful."
Nobody should have to live this way any day of the year. Please support the Meniere's Society this Christmas so we can continue our work to support people affected by debilitating inner ear disorders, raise vital funds for essential research in the field and achieve our aim to improve the quality of life for people with vestibular disorders.