Visual snow and light sensitivity?

Hi everyone,

I am curious to know from those of you who are really struggling with your dizziness/disquilibrium if you also have issues with your vision? Do you have snowy vision and/or great light sensitivity? Is there any one out there who isn’t having as bad of a time with the dizziness but definitely has daily problems with the vision? Those who do have vision issues (with or without a lot of dizziness), have you found any relief from the meds that you are taking? I’ve read a lot about how certain meds have helped people here with dizziness, but not much about the vision.

Thanks, Bonnie

I have had a few issues with my vision. I have definite light sensitivity. I had snowy vision only the day that I woke up with the dizziness originally back in the spring of '08. I have had a floater in my left eye this whole time. I went to an opthalmologist at the beginning of all this. My vision was fine. I go for a followup tomorrow. He said he thought my dizziness, balance problems, etc. were related to migraines. He was the only one who was on the right track at the beginning. He said my brain would adjust to the floater being there, but it hasn’t yet. I wear sunglasses a lot more than I used to. I don’t really have snowy vision anymore. I only take Verapamil.

nance

My dizziness/disequilibrium has gone from my most bothersome symptom one year ago to only an occasional minor symptom presently. However, I still experience constant visual snow and light sensitivity to varying degrees. I wouldn’t be surprised if the visual snow never went away. I’ve gotten quite used to it and have learned to adapt. I’ll take the visual symptoms over vertigo any day! Of course, I would prefer to have ALL the symptoms go away forever!!!

— Begin quote from “MarciM”

My dizziness/disequilibrium has gone from my most bothersome symptom one year ago to only an occasional minor symptom presently. However, I still experience constant visual snow and light sensitivity to varying degrees. I wouldn’t be surprised if the visual snow never went away. I’ve gotten quite used to it and have learned to adapt. I’ll take the visual symptoms over vertigo any day! Of course, I would prefer to have ALL the symptoms go away forever!!!

— End quote

Hi Marci,

I would be interested in hearing how you adapted, or did you just mean that over a year, you got used to it (your mind/body just got used to it?) I totally understand and relate to your statement about having visual issues over the vertigo. Me too! I recently was made much more aware of this when I had an attack. My visual stuff it the worst of all my symptoms and I just would love it if at least it would get a little lessened. This did happen when I started on the klonopin initially, so I am hoping that when I find out which med to use with it (currently trying a trycyclic antidepressant), that it will again lessen. May I ask what med you are on that helped you get rid of your dizziness?

Best, Bonnie

— Begin quote from “bcrelief”

Hi Marci,

I would be interested in hearing how you adapted, or did you just mean that over a year, you got used to it (your mind/body just got used to it?) I totally understand and relate to your statement about having visual issues over the vertigo. Me too! I recently was made much more aware of this when I had an attack. My visual stuff it the worst of all my symptoms and I just would love it if at least it would get a little lessened. This did happen when I started on the klonopin initially, so I am hoping that when I find out which med to use with it (currently trying a trycyclic antidepressant), that it will again lessen. May I ask what med you are on that helped you get rid of your dizziness?

Best, Bonnie

— End quote

Hi Bonnie,

I haven’t been on any medications for a while now. I was just given a new prescription to try, but I may wait a while to try it out of fear of side effects. My vertigo started to improve last Spring when I started taking Verapamil and began the migraine diet. I can’t say for sure, but I believe the vertigo improved primarily due to the following: caffeine, msg, aspartame, and nitrate avoidance; low-carb diet; regulated sleep; and my brain is learning to adapt. I would recommend trying Verapamil if you haven’t already. It seems to have the least side effects and helps many with vertigo. I quit taking it after the vertigo improved because I did have some side effects (headaches and constipation). Do you consume caffeine? If so, I STRONGLY recommend you wean yourself off of it. A strong cup of coffee can send me into a spin in a matter of minutes.

Take care,

Marci

— Begin quote from “bcrelief”

Hi everyone,

I am curious to know from those of you who are really struggling with your dizziness/disquilibrium if you also have issues with your vision? Do you have snowy vision and/or great light sensitivity? Is there any one out there who isn’t having as bad of a time with the dizziness but definitely has daily problems with the vision? Those who do have vision issues (with or without a lot of dizziness), have you found any relief from the meds that you are taking? I’ve read a lot about how certain meds have helped people here with dizziness, but not much about the vision.

Thanks, Bonnie

— End quote

Bonnie,

I have definite problems with light sensitivity. My ride into work in the morning is 10 miles of driving towards the east. At this time of the year the sun is in my eyes for the entire 20 minutes. It is a horrible ride, but in another 2-3 weeks the sun will be rising earlier and at a different angle so it won’t be so bad. I love cloudy days!! And I love my sunglasses which look more like goggles (they fit on over my glasses and wrap around to the side so the sun can’t sneak in). During my vertigo attacks I cannot tolerate light at all.

I haven’t found any solution for this but haven’t really looked as I didn’t think anything could help. I’m interested in hearing more from others.

BW

This is the area that never got better for me really. The entire world appears to slightly shift and move 24/7 for me. It’s gotten a little better but I never fully recovered from this. I woke up like this a year ago and everything has been moving ever since. The grainy, snowy vision DID improve, and the light sensitivity DID improve, but did not go away 100%. All my other multitude of symptoms went away. However, the vision symptom is the most debilitating and annoying. I’m always looking at a moving target, even when it is standing still. It also creates additional dizziness for me because nothing is ever truely “still” for me. I’ve gotten somewhat used to it, but I would love my stillness back

Rich

Thanks for the responses everyone. This seems to be a symptom that many have in some form.

Marci - interesting info. My main symptom right now is the visual stuff, so I am not sure if something like Verapramil or other meds would help me much, unless my wooziness/balance stuff kicks in again. And no, I stay away from caffeine. :wink:

Rich - you seem to have more problems with the vision/balance connection. Sorry to hear that. However, it is good to know that the snowy vision and light sensitivity did get better, even if it didn’t go away. I assume this is the likely case with a lot of people - it might get better but not go away totally. I know that when I first started having problems in August and went on Klonopin, nearly all my symptoms went away, but the visual stuff didn’t totally. It did, however, get better, so that’s where I would like to be again! Right now the visual sensitivity/clarity issues is really a problem for me. The doc was not at all surprised that my symptoms returned after 3 months of feeling really good, as I was only on the Klonopin. We have now added a second med which I am trying out.

Best to all, and keep sharing on this topic! Cheers, Bonnie

HI
I’ve read this thread with a lot of interest and trying to work out where my symptoms fit.

I react very badly to caffeine and it’ll send me into a spin within 15 minutes of drinking a cup of tea - same as Marci. I react a lot to bright/strong light, headlights, flourescent lights. I’ve just got a new flat screen monitor at work after using a laptop screen for the last 4 years and I can only look at it for about 5 minutes at a time and it makes me feel really dizzy. I get mild vertigo/spinning sensation a lot. I’d wear sunglasses all the time if I could, I prefer driving at night, and I always have the sun visor down when driving even on a dull day.
I don’t get visual snow really though - by this do you mean that the vision is sort of cloudy, like snow on a tv picture? Although I do get the sensation that sometimes it’s hard to focus on something.

I suppose all of this is related to migraine? Does anyone have problems driving? I think this isn’t related to migraine so much? I’m having vestibular rehabilitation therapy to help me to resolve this.

What is the second med that you are trying Bonnie, hope it helps you.

Best wishes
Tess

Okay, symptom comparing…My migraines come and go, some food and environmental triggered, mostly hormonal. Then I got this array of other symptoms that have been with me 24/7 for over a year now. Dizzies, light-headed, thinking clarity issues, head pressure, ear pressure, tinnitus (1 time for a month pulsating bass sound), photophobia, phonophobia (they just joined the party a month ago) and vision issues. My vision feels jumpy sometimes and I have difficult focusing, especially when reading fine print. Some days I have less of a combination and severity while other I have more, but I always have something. I really do not see the connection with my migraines as I mentioned they just come and go on their own not really making my other symptoms worse or better. That is my million dollar question for Dr. Hain when i have my phone consult, is how can all my other symptoms be related to migraines when they seem so independent of each other. If I take a Triptain for my migraine it affects my pain but none of my other symptoms. I don’t see the relationship.

9kidsus -

I know what you mean about the jumpy vision. My physical therapist calls it oscillopsia. I guess when I think about it, I had the jumpy vision before anything. I am glad you are having a phone consultation with Dr. Hain. That is how I started with him. You’ll have to let us know how it goes. I don’t have any headaches, I haven’t for 10-11 months now. I just have the other symptoms supposedly related to migraine. All because of hormones fluctuating according to Dr. Hain. He said some women are more sensitive to it.

Nance

— Begin quote from “Tesss”

HI
I’ve read this thread with a lot of interest and trying to work out where my symptoms fit.

I react very badly to caffeine and it’ll send me into a spin within 15 minutes of drinking a cup of tea - same as Marci. I react a lot to bright/strong light, headlights, flourescent lights. I’ve just got a new flat screen monitor at work after using a laptop screen for the last 4 years and I can only look at it for about 5 minutes at a time and it makes me feel really dizzy. I get mild vertigo/spinning sensation a lot. I’d wear sunglasses all the time if I could, I prefer driving at night, and I always have the sun visor down when driving even on a dull day.
I don’t get visual snow really though - by this do you mean that the vision is sort of cloudy, like snow on a tv picture? Although I do get the sensation that sometimes it’s hard to focus on something.

I suppose all of this is related to migraine? Does anyone have problems driving? I think this isn’t related to migraine so much? I’m having vestibular rehabilitation therapy to help me to resolve this.

What is the second med that you are trying Bonnie, hope it helps you.

Best wishes
Tess

— End quote

Hi Tess,
Interesting description. Sounds like you have visual problems with this, but ones that are slightly different than mine. And yes, it is known that one of the MAV symptoms is visual snow/clarity issues/sensitivity. I am sensitive to all lights, particularly flourescent and car headlights. During the day, car headlights look like highbeams to me and at night, they are REALLY bright. The newer white headlights (can’t remember what they are called) are the worst. The snowy vision that I note can be described kinda like snow on a tv set I suppose. It’s a clarity issue along with just seeing, well, snow or static! :wink: The light issues are not brightness but the intensity of them - everything is much more intense now.

The second med I am taking (along with Klonopin) is Tofranil (a tricyclic antidepressant). Only been on it 2 weeks and can only wait to see if it will help.

Best, Bonnie

— Begin quote from “9kidsus”

Okay, symptom comparing…My migraines come and go, some food and environmental triggered, mostly hormonal. Then I got this array of other symptoms that have been with me 24/7 for over a year now. Dizzies, light-headed, thinking clarity issues, head pressure, ear pressure, tinnitus (1 time for a month pulsating bass sound), photophobia, phonophobia (they just joined the party a month ago) and vision issues. My vision feels jumpy sometimes and I have difficult focusing, especially when reading fine print. Some days I have less of a combination and severity while other I have more, but I always have something. I really do not see the connection with my migraines as I mentioned they just come and go on their own not really making my other symptoms worse or better. That is my million dollar question for Dr. Hain when i have my phone consult, is how can all my other symptoms be related to migraines when they seem so independent of each other. If I take a Triptain for my migraine it affects my pain but none of my other symptoms. I don’t see the relationship.

— End quote

Hi Andrea,
What you have described are classic MAV symptoms that MANY of us here have. You do not have to have the headache to have MAV, nor if having one seemingly separate from your other symptoms means they are not related. I definitely think you should ask Dr. Hain about this, as his explanation may make more sense (plus I’m sure many here would be interested in hearing what he says.) If you think of it, inquire about the visual sensitivity (Photophobia), as that seems to be a 24/7 symptom for people here (including me) regardless of whether one is dizzy or not. I would be interested if he suggests a specific med for this symptom/has seen the severity of it lessen in patients.

Best, Bonnie

Does anyone else get ear pressure as one of their symptoms??? :?:

— Begin quote from “9kidsus”

Does anyone else get ear pressure as one of their symptoms??? :?:

— End quote

Yep - Absolutely.

Andrea - yes. BTW, when will you be speaking with Dr. Hain? These questions about the vision stuff, as well as the symptoms you also mentioned, should be brought up when you talk to him. I’ll bet he’ll have lots to say about it!

Best, Bonnie

My phone consult is this Thursday, I am really hoping it is not just another waste of time and money. Thus far physicians have not proved very useful, I have gotten more info from forums and books, so we’ll see how it goes.

— Begin quote from “9kidsus”

My phone consult is this Thursday, I am really hoping it is not just another waste of time and money. Thus far physicians have not proved very useful, I have gotten more info from forums and books, so we’ll see how it goes.

— End quote

Hi Andrea,

May I suggest that you write down your list of questions? That way you won’t forget anything and can cover a lot in a short period of time. Dr. Hain is considered one of the best, if not THE best, doctors dealing with MAV. He should be able to clarify and explain things to you and possibly suggest a treatment plan (although I am not sure if he does this on a phone consult, so maybe a way to address this is to ask what meds he recommends for MAV/the symptoms you have.) He has a very indepth webpage that many of us get information from and post/discuss here. I’m sure others besides myself would be very interested to hear what he tells you if you want to share afterwards.

Good luck! ~Bonnie

Well it is really snowing in Georgia today first time in a long time… :mrgreen:

So the change in weather should make this all very interesting.

Timeless - just wondering how you made out. I was going to make a joke about “seeing snow” and that it is just outside your window, not in your daily vision, but I’ll let that go. :lol:

Curious to know if anyone also experiences seeing quick spots of light or flashes in their daily vision and/or visual lightning or disturbances when your eyes are closed and trying to sleep?