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Brain & Nervous System Disorders Message Board

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What you're experiencing sounds somewhat similar to what I've been experiencing off-and-on over the past 3 or so years. I've done lots of research online and the only thing that pops up are things about Derealization and Depersonalisation. However, I have this seed of doubt that they're not quite what it is i'm experiencing.

Let me tell you my story and perhaps others can relate to this as well..

I had just moved my sister into her new apartment on a hot August day and decided to go out with some buddies after I got home and we decided to smoke some (a lot) of marijuana - I probably (or apparently) smoked far too much. I woke up the next morning and felt fine. I got a shower and as soon as I got out of it out of nowhere this intense disconnected feeling came over me. I had no idea what was going on and was probably having a panic attack at that time. I was left in this stated for a good month. I was virtually unable to work, communicate with people (I could have conversations but it was almost like it was subconcious - like I wasn't really sure what it was I was talking about).

I went to the ER, had urine and blood samples done - found nothing. This feeling eventually went away on its own, it was very slow and very gradual, but it eventually did.

Over the past 2-3 I have had numerous vists to physicians and neurologists. I've had EEG's, MRI's the whole 9 yards and nothing has been found.

Let me try my best to explain how I feel when I am in this state and the patterns which I've found when it usually sets in.

First: I have noticed I tend to get into this state when I am generally tired; exhausted or under considerable stress (maybe there is a lot of change happening in life at that time - exams etc). Also, it seems to happen when there is a lot of activity in an area (such as people moving - like in a mall or grocery store). However when I concentrate on one object and lose focus on other people around me it fades away.

Now, how I feel when I am experiencing an "episode" (bare with me here, it is honestly the most difficult thing to explain - no doctor has ever understood what it was I was trying to say).

I seem to constantly be second-guessing myself. That is, for example if something doesn't work the way my brain is used to it happening then I begin to panic and can't think logically as to why it isn't working "properly". For example: I have an iPhone. If I press the circle power button to view my screen and it doesn't immediately the way it is supposed to the first time I will begin to panic and question why isn't this working? This happens and I can't logically reason that it just didn't work and there's nothing else to it.

A very dazed out, subconscious feeling. I feel like I'm just going through the motions, as if I'm not really there. People can talk to me, but I think it takes me more time than normal to produce a response (time distortion) and when I do respond, that's all it is, a vague response..with no emotion. I can walk fine, but again, I'm just going through the motions, I'm not really focusing on my walking, it's just a natural movement - I want to say it's a zombie-like state (keep in mind this was during the first time I experienced this, during the first few weeks - when it has happened since, I've learned to deal with it and I don't let it affect me as severely).

A lack of taste and lack of sensation in my fingertips (almost a numb feeling).

I have come up with two ways which I think can best describe these "episodes":

1) Take the feeling of being drunk. You're dazed and everything feels spaced out - but it's fun, because you don't know what's going on and you don't care. Take that same feeling (the dazed and spaced out), remove the fun (of not caring) and apply it to trying to live everyday life - trying to work, trying to drive, trying to walk, cook, study etc. It virtually stops you from being able to function normally - it's an impairment.

2) Now, for this one I'm not sure if everyone has experienced this but when you are very very very very fatigued. Imagine it's like 3am and you're awake but you're incredibly tired and you're just kinda going through the motions, you're awake but you're not really there (this one is hard to explain) and that is essentially what it is I feel when I'm having an "episode" - this feeling of uncertainty, second guessing everything that happens, over thinking situations, anticipation, lack on concentration, inability to make decisions and think critically.

To be honest that was the short version of my story and probably not the best edited or smoothest flowing (it's 12am and I'm tired coming off a long shift at work..sorry).

I would just like to add that these episodes are few and far between now for me. They seem to occur in it's mildest form when I am very tired and that's when I know it's time to pack it in and go to bed. I wake up refreshed and ready to go. On the rare occasion it does happen severely, it lasts for about a week (it seems to be spot on about it, comes on a Monday..gone the next Monday - but I've also learned to deal with it and push it aside).

I believe the key here is [U]fatigue[/U]. The pattern I have noticed is that it always strikes when I'm tired. Mix in the stress of exams and work with that and you've got a recipe for a severe "episode". I'm no doctor, but having suffered from this for 3 years and having no doctor being able to tell me what is wrong I have come to the conclusion that I'll have to figure it out on my own. All I can say is I'm pretty sure it is all psychological. There is nothing wrong with you that can (or needs to) be "cured", it's a trick which your complex brain is trying to play on you. My best advice is to learn to fight it, ignore it and don't let it consume you. As difficult as this may sound it is possible. Fight back and live your life. If you're tired go to bed, don't fight fatigue.

I sincerely hope reading this helps at least one person.

Cheers, and if you've read this far - thank you.

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