Repetitive Strain Injury/Dizziness and tight neck


Stacey wrote at 2007-11-26 21:31:22
Hi Alison,

I too have been having these symptoms. I have had an MRI, CAT scan, and numerous ear tests. All coming back normal. My GP told me I was nuts, and I seriously thought I was going insane! I went to a chiropractor and discovered that there was incredible tension in my neck and shoulders. He has continued to work on my neck and shoulders with physical therapy and deep tissue massage.

My advice to you would be to try a massage once a week, and exercises that relieve the tension in your neck.

Also - I've noticed that I grind and clench my teeth, which also leads to tension in the neck and shoulders. You might want to check with your dentist, and if  that is the case with you, they can probably fit you with a night guard that would reduce the tension.

Stephen wrote at 2007-12-05 12:36:44
I too have had similar problems for 9 months.

Constant dizzyness but not off balance or falling over, pressure in forehead, weird neck feeling. Up to now I've had full ENT exam, ears, sinus etc, brain MRI, tried medication for sinus problems, vertico, mild dose of anti depressants, seen 2 neurologists. Just waiting for results on a neck MRI now. The only joy I've had is with Cranial Osteopath.

Tracey Currie wrote at 2009-03-16 05:38:29
I have exactly the same problem and have been suffering with this now for 7 years - not to mention countless doctors and therapist appointments and thousands of dollars lately. What I can tell you for certain is that Oestopathic and chiropractic treatments are only very short terms solutions. You need to work on your posture making sure your shoulders are back all the time, have regular breaks from the computer and practice stretching techniques throughout the day. Don't let yourself get fatigued as this is one of the worst triggers for problems, when fatigue sets in you naturally droop your shoulders and that puts a huge strain on the upper neck muscles which in turn tighten up and this causes migraines, dizziness and nausea. I don't mean to sound horrid, but you will probably have this problem long term now as it has built up over many years of bad posture, you need to establish some sound coping mechanims and know what triggers it, don't overdo things and there will be days where you feel great and others where you don't, its all about how you deal with it. I would recommend that you have a deep tissue massage at least weekly and may be that you have to try a few practitioners until you get one that understands your problem. I wish you luck with this. I am happy to answer any problems you may have, as I said it has been 7 long years for me and its a terrible problem, but one that I have learnt to live with and know what triggers it.

Sue wrote at 2010-03-01 15:03:26
I am so happy to see this topic in your forum.  I have been suffering and searching for an answer that I feel comfortable with for a year now.  I, too, have pressure on top of my head, neck and shoulder pain, I've had many tests, MRI, Cat scans, Lyme tests, rhumetoid athritis blood work, Lupus blood work, seen 2 neurologists, and an ENT.  At first I was told that I must have an inner ear infection complicated by anxiety, but in the months following, the head "pressure" off-balance feeling, numbness and tingling (all over clumbsiness feeling) on my right side came back.  The second neurologist said that it stemmed from my neck...and after being happy to tell me I didn't have MS sent me on my way to just deal with it.  I'm now exploring physical therapy to get my muscles strong again and hopefully line up the body correctly again and be rid of this ongoing drama.  The worst part for me is that I don't tend to believe that the snawer is as simple as a neck problem because the issues that come with it are so bizzare.  There are days that I feel like my head is in a bubble, and it's not an automatic thing to be able to tie my kids shoes.  I have concerns that it is a scary neurological disorder.  Reading your experiences has made me feel a bit better....for today. Also, I don't know if this might help anyone else, but when exploring the "anxiety" component to this diagnosis, I was put on a low dose of clonozapam, and on bad days, I take it and it does seem to help a lot. My doctor says that it can also serve as a muscle relaxer.  Although when given flexoral ( an actual muscle relaxer, it didn't help at all).  Good luck everyone.  I'd love to hear if anyone finds the true answer to all of this.  I'm willing to do the hard work to feel myself again and anjoy life!

Sue wrote at 2010-03-01 20:17:54
I'm also wondering if Alison Has found relief or a cure for her condition...I'm hoping for both her sake and my own that the answer is yes...and would love to know what it was.

Bos wrote at 2010-06-29 16:16:30
Hi Allison,

I've been experiencing many of the same symptoms. Thanks to Julie's book, I've been able to keep it in check, but the treatments haven't lasted more than  an hour or so. Finally, I went to a highly recommended chiropractor today and found out that my 1st and 2nd cervical vertabrae where WAY out of alignment. He gave me a full body tune-up and I can really feel a difference in my neck and back. Though I'm still dizzy, I hope to feel better in a day or two!

Bos wrote at 2010-06-29 16:16:45
Hi Allison,

I've been experiencing many of the same symptoms. Thanks to Julie's book, I've been able to keep it in check, but the treatments haven't lasted more than  an hour or so. Finally, I went to a highly recommended chiropractor today and found out that my 1st and 2nd cervical vertabrae where WAY out of alignment. He gave me a full body tune-up and I can really feel a difference in my neck and back. Though I'm still dizzy, I hope to feel better in a day or two!

Jenn wrote at 2010-08-30 07:13:39
Hi to Everyone reading...

I am glad to have found more people with symptoms like that one's I have been facing off and on for 5 months now. They used to be very short 'epidsodes' and more recently I have been having one of these episodes for weeks on end. I feel like my neck is involved, and have heard of going to a chiropractor. My primary dr told me it was an inner ear thing but I am not convinced.

After reading your response Bos, I am going to have a chiropractor check it out.

Since you had your 'tune up' has the dizzy feeling gone away?  

Kjirsten wrote at 2010-12-22 17:29:12
All: I've been experiencing the same symptoms as described by all of you. I've seen a massage therapist a few times since the dizziness started happening 6 months ago. The massage therapist has extremely helped alleviate the dizziness. I can feel the dizziness come back when I haven't seen the therapist for some time. I whole-heartedly believe that the dizziness, lightheadedness, tingling in arm/cheek, fogginess is due to tight muscles and misalignment in my neck and I do believe this is caused by incorrect pillow, sleeping postures, tense shoulders, poor posture during the day and lack of stretching. Also - and this is KEY to alleviating my dizziness - working out. Going the the gym has been my lifesaver in helping reduce symptoms. I hope this helps - it can be scary and hard to understand why this is happening, but I'm glad to read that there are others dealing with this too.

NULL wrote at 2012-02-17 07:19:49
Have the ENT check for Ménière's disease, or another inner ear disorder. I have Ménière's disease, & only found out after going to an ENT following a particularly bad attack. Unfortunately there's no cure. There is a surgery, but it doesn't seem to be very effective. Ménière's disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can affect hearing & balance to a varying degree. It's characterized by episodes of vertigo(dizziness), low pitched tinnitus, & hearing loss. The hearing loss has a fluctuating then permanent nature, meaning that it comes & goes, alternating between ears for some time, then becomes permanent w/ no return to normal function. It's named after the French physician Prosper Ménière, who, in an article published in 1861, 1st reported that vertigo was caused by inner ear disorders. The condition affects people differently; it can range in intensity from being a mild annoyance to a chronic, lifelong disability.

Lalainthecity wrote at 2013-05-28 01:29:28
Hi All,

I started getting dizziness right after a cold in Nov 2011. Since I've had all kinds of tests- MRIs brain and neck, VNG, ear test, hearing test, eye measurment tests, cat scans.

I told all doctors I see I felt my neck was involved because I always had neck pain with teh dizziness and they said I may have migraine, though I've never had those symptoms before the cold. I went to see a chiropractor after getting the results of my neck MRI- my neck was too straight and lacked the normal curve more than likely due to muscle spasming. I saw him from Feb 2012 through June 2012 which relieved my dizziness a lot, to the point I didnt even feel it anymore and could go back to drinking liquor and exercising after I hadnt been able to for months.  Since I felt fine, I stopped seeing the chiropractor and 3 months later, I started feeling the dizziness come back again. I saw more doctors to rule out serious ailments before I started seeing the chiropractor again. I started back at the chiropractor in the beginning of May 2013, I'd like to know if anyone else has had great relief and what their methods were that they used.

Good luck to all!! :) Hope to be dizziness-free again very soon.

Repetitive Strain Injury

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Julie Donnelly, LMT


I can accept questions that relate to chronic or acute pain caused by muscle spasms and contractions. Repetitive Strain Injury is actually Cumulative Trauma to muscles. Releasing the spasm &/or contraction will relieve the strain that is felt at the insertion point on the bone. I am the co-developer of the unique safe-stretching program "Focused Flexibility Training," which combines easy instruction for self-treating spasms throughout your body with proven yoga stretches. I have recently authored two new books: "The 15 Minute Back Pain Solution," and "The Secret to Your Best Golf Game EVER!


Since 1989 I have been working with endurance athletes and individuals suffering from chronic pain conditions. I have authored seven self-treatment books and three self-treatment DVDs and I have developed the Julstro System for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome, Trigger Finger, and other Hand/Wrist pain. I am a national and international presenter at conventions, seminars, and workshops. Principle topics are "Work Shouldn't Hurt," and "The Pain Free Athlete." In 2005 and 2006 I was the massage therapist for ultracyclists competing in the Race Across America (RAAM) 3000+ mile race from San Diego, CA to Atlantic City, NJ. I've taught the Julstro techniques to physical therapists at the Cleveland Clinic, to massage therapists in areas around the USA, and I've taught Julstro self-treatment clinics to dancers at Juilliard School of Performing Arts (NYC),the sprinting team at NC State, and I am working closely with several Olympic-hopeful. We have successfully eliminated the repetitive strain injuries that could keep them out of the Olympic Games, and the best part is they know how to do the self-treatments so they can stay pain-free and flexible.

Triathlete Magazine, Endurance Magazine, multiple national and international trade journals.

Swedish Institute of Allied Health, NY, NY - Initial education in massage therapy Licensed NYS Massage Therapist since 1989. SUNY Empire State College, Saratoga Springs, NY - B.Sc. degree in Interdisciplinary Health Education I was an Associate Professor helping to develop the massage training program for SUNY Rockland Community College

Past/Present Clients
Privacy prevents me from filling in this section without prior consent from my clients. Life Experience: I have been specializing in the treatment of chronic pain and sports injuries since receiving my NY massage license in 1989. A personal bout with carpal tunnel syndrome was the catalyst to my developing a self-treatment that heals the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome quickly and without surgery. My work with endurance athletes was the inspiration to teach people how to self-treat so they could stop pains even during a race or heavy training day. Both of these situations ultimately became the products that are sold on my websites: and I currently treat people in my offices in Sarasota, FL, Cary, NC, or Pearl River, NY

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