Old Building With Sloped Floors Contributing To Symptoms?

I live in a prewar building on the top floor. Like many old buildings in New York the foundation has settled and the floors in my apartment have a pretty serious slope to them. If I spill a glass of water on one side it will quickly pool at the other end. The sloped floors have always annoyed me but I’ve always just tried to ignore it. I’ve lived here for 4 years, but only experienced VM for the last year.

Does anyone else live in a place with sloped floors? Do you think that sloped floors can contribute to your vertigo symptoms and make things worse?

I can relate to this. I worked in a hundred-year-old building that was converted into office space. The floors were so off, my filing cabinet drawers would slide shut on their own. My boss’ office was especially bad, and sitting at his computer could easily give me the spins. I always had to brace myself against something whenever I stood in his office.

The entire setup definitely made my symptoms worse, and they got so bad I had to quit my job in 2007. Since I’ve been out of the office I have improved (although that might be attributed to other things as well – less use of the computer, no commute, escaping the fluorescent lighting, less stress, etc.) But it was definitely a difficult and uncomfortable situation.

Hope you find a solution.

Thankfully, I can’t relate to the kind of sloping environment you are talking about. I did however stumble across an image on Reddit of a perfectly level shelf installed in a very wonky house (doors, floor, window frame etc.). Just looking at the image made me dizzy, so I’m sure walking in such an environment would be most worrying.

I think it all relates to experience. We are used to living and working in level, built environments. We are also used to walking in uneven natural environments - snow, hills, rocky surfaces etc. When we experience something we are not used to, perhaps our brains can’t handle the signals being transmitted from our feet and we get dizzy/vertigo?

I get travel sick when I don’t drive like a granny, because my brain can’'t deal with or reconcile the signals from the vestibular systems, eyes and skin. I feel better when I stand still, but in the grand scheme of things, I am still moving at 400+ m/s!

Sails

I am definitely worse when I’m in an environment where things aren’t as they “should be”. I have a terrible time at work I think in part due to the patterned /lined carpeting not matching up with the walls. I have trouble with judging uneven surfaces/floors. I think it’s because the sensors between my body and brain are not communicating correctly…guess that’s an aspect of vestibular conditions…

I hate floors that are uneven, squishy, etc. You want solid, level footing when you have dizziness and balance problems.

I know I’ve become extra sensitive to what’s under my feet. Once I walked down someone’s hall in an old house and said, “Your hall floor slants slightly to the left.” “Oh, no, it does not!” “Oh, yes it does too!”

They called me up a day or two later and said they had taken a level and put it in their hallway and of course I was right! It DID slant, too little for them to notice, but I sure did!

Sorry you have to live in a place like that. Bummer.

— Begin quote from "Sails"

Thankfully, I can’t relate to the kind of sloping environment you are talking about. I did however stumble across an image on Reddit of a perfectly level shelf installed in a very wonky house (doors, floor, window frame etc.). Just looking at the image made me dizzy, so I’m sure walking in such an environment would be most worrying.

**I think it all relates to experience. We are used to living and working in level, built environments. We are also used to walking in uneven natural environments - snow, hills, rocky surfaces etc. When we experience something we are not used to, perhaps our brains can’t handle the signals being transmitted from our feet and we get dizzy/vertigo?
**
I get travel sick when I don’t drive like a granny, because my brain can’'t deal with or reconcile the signals from the vestibular systems, eyes and skin. I feel better when I stand still, but in the grand scheme of things, I am still moving at 400+ m/s!

Sails

— End quote

I completely agree with the statement bolded above…

And I agree with KennedyLane’s agreement!

I have noticed forever that a CHANGE in what’s under my feet makes me feel a little dizzy or unstable until my feet get used to the new “underfoot.” Takes a minute or two.

Examples: crossing (especially barefoot) from a hardwood floor onto a carpeted floor, or vice versa;

taking my shoes off and walking barefoot–I am momentarily slightly less stable and steady-headed than I otherwise am, or vice versa, putting my shoes on after having been walking barefoot.

Walking DOWN a ramp is for some reason disconcerting, though walking up one isn’t.

I can never stand on those rubbery mats that are supposed to be good if you stand a lot at your work. It’s SCARY to stand on them.

A funny aside–I have noticed that our cats always prefer to walk on a hard surface. We have tile floor in our bathroom but have throw rugs that cover most of it, and the cats always prefer to pick their way along the narrow tile part rather than walk across the rugs.

Two comments, Nancy.

First, walking down is more of a challenge for anyone–and more of a challenge anatomically, in terms of far-greater jarring–for anyone, MAV or no.

Second, for a cat, carpet is designed ideally for barfing, not walking.

David: thanks for your two comments. Both very, very true. :slight_smile: Thanks for the laugh on the cat preference.

I definitely can relate. I used to feel very dizzy when I walked into my friend’s office at work. Very unsettling, I never mentioned anything because I didn’t want her to think I was too bonkers. Then we have some major office changes/moves and I moved into the empty office next to her. As soon as I walked into the room I felt so sick and dizzy and couldn’t figure out why. Once all my furniture go moved in I saw it was very sloped. Come to find out that entire wall of offices was built on uneven ground and they were all tipping down. Eventually I got used to it but it took some time. Many time people who walked in there for the first time noticed it right away. One guy couldn’t even come in as it made him feel so sick (and he doesn’t even have a balance disorder). I have a very difficult time on sloped and uneven ground, especially if I don’t expect it.