Are my concerns warranted?

Please register or login

Welcome to ScubaBoard, the world's largest scuba diving community. Registration is not required to read the forums, but we encourage you to join. Joining has its benefits and enables you to participate in the discussions.

Benefits of registering include

  • Ability to post and comment on topics and discussions.
  • A Free photo gallery to share your dive photos with the world.
  • You can make this box go away

Joining is quick and easy. Log in or Register now!

Samson

Registered
Messages
11
Reaction score
8
Location
California
# of dives
None - Not Certified
I've put off diving for a whole host of reasons for the past few years but I am finally at a point where I can sign up for several classes and get this underway.

I'm excited about the notion of diving but admittedly I'm a bit concerned. I have rare episodes of vertigo that are very unpleasant. When I say rare, I mean they happen once every several years. They are still, however, very unpleasant and usually are spread out throughout the day with 3-4 episodes each lasting a few mins. When it happens, it leaves me more/less nonfunctional for the rest of the day given the extreme disorientation and fatigue.

My concern as it relates to diving is that diving is an activity that can cause various pressure changes between the different levels of the ear and as such, damage can occur (whether on accident, negligently, randomly, etc.) and this ear damage can lead to many unpleasant symptoms, many focused around vertigo, dizziness, etc. A quick search on this forum reveals this. I even recall one individual who apparently was an avid diver throughout her 20s and 30s but always had ear problems after dives. Fast forward to her now 50s and apparently she suffers from severe Meniere's disease that leaves here with weekly vertigo spells and she swears it was from her diving days long past.

I have an appointment with an ENT to get things checked out to make sure I don't have an underlying ear disorder. Perhaps I don't have anything and I'm most likely being very presumptive, but my main concern is that even if I do have an ear disorder, it's clearly something that doesn't come up often and I'd like to keep it that way but I feel that diving could potentially exacerbate it and lead to a more debilitating condition.

Are my concerns valid?
 

tursiops

Marine Scientist and Master Instructor
ScubaBoard Supporter
Scuba Instructor
Messages
12,915
Reaction score
11,302
Location
U.S. East Coast
# of dives
2500 - 4999
Listen to your doctors. You will need a medical release to take a scuba class. It might not get signed.
Not everyone can dive, due to various conditions. It is not the end of the world.
Of course, we all do hope you will get cleared and certified and love the hobby.
 

Duke Dive Medicine

ScubaBoard Supporter
Staff member
ScubaBoard Supporter
Messages
2,972
Reaction score
2,867
Location
Durham, North Carolina
I think they're quite valid and an exam from an ENT prior to diving is definitely warranted. It sounds like you don't yet know what causes these episodes of vertigo, is that correct?

Best regards,
DDM
 
OP
Samson

Samson

Registered
Messages
11
Reaction score
8
Location
California
# of dives
None - Not Certified
I think they're quite valid and an exam from an ENT prior to diving is definitely warranted. It sounds like you don't yet know what causes these episodes of vertigo, is that correct?

Best regards,
DDM

This is correct, no clue what causes them. I remember having this as a child and even during my teenage years but again, they were still rare. My dad has the same thing interestingly but it doesn't happen often enough to where he found it unusual so none of us have ever really looked into it.

Diet is perfect and I take care of my health meticulously. I think I have very good hearing but my ears are also very sensitive to changes in pressure. I'm an avid swimmer and go to great lengths to keep water out of my ears as I find it very uncomfortable.
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/swift/

Top Bottom