Treating dissociation from VM?

After almost a decade with VM I have the panic attacks and extreme anxiety mostly under control. However, a huge issue I suffer from is dissociation. I believe the dissociation is triggered by my brain as a response to vertigo, probably as an alternative coping mechanism to anxiety.

Sometimes the dissociation is really bad. I look at my hands and they look like someone else’s hands. Other people look alien and unrecognisable, I will look at my family and it will feel like I don’t really know them. Days will pass without me really feeling “present”.

Running and meditation seem to help, but mostly while I’m actually doing those activities. And I can’t spend my entire day running and meditating.

Benzodiazepines also seem to temporarily fix the problem, but they are habit forming so I try to avoid them as much as possible (only use them for bad vertigo attacks when I have important things I need to do).

Has anyone else dealt with dissociation? What helped you?

FYI there’s a great paper on this, posted by @Onandon03 only yesterday, but its locked behind Trust Level 2, which you will achieve by engaging in the forum for longer:

It’s not just a VM symptom, I had it with MAV related to my ear injury. It affects a lot of people with vestibular deficit. There’s a thought that our vestibular system “places” us and our movements in this world. Without this reliable information we become “disconnected”.

If you search on dissociation there’s quite a lot already discussed about it. It’s arguably the same as “derealisation”?


AIWS? Alice In Wonderland Syndrome? Lewis Carrol suffered migraine too apparently hence … You’ll find some references on here.

Yep, had all this stuff for years, it slowly fades as you find treatment options that effectively treat MAV.


Yes Its not so bad now, but when it was bad I felt like I was walking around in a bubble, sometimes I get the sense time is speeding by around me and I wonder if I was even present in the day. My symptoms are pretty much controlled now on Amitriptiline and the brain fog and vertigo Is all but gone. Occasionally I will feel the sense of time speeding, it’s an out of control feeling but it’s rare now. Pre MAV I sometimes felt this way if I was extremely anxious

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