The Internet is a terrible resource for making a self-diagnosis.
I’ve been feeling a little off kilter lately, having these bouts with dizziness or just little head rushes. I’ve had a clean bill of health my whole life, so there’s no reason for me to believe it’s anything serious. However, it’s unpleasant, and being a man who needs answers, I took to the Internet (at first) to find out what’s wrong with me.
Enter: WebMD.com and its Symptom Checker.
If you’ve never used this site’s feature, believe me, it’s a hypochondriac’s playground. I used it a few times when I didn’t have health insurance, but now that I’m covered, it seems like a silly waste of time. But regardless, here’s what I learned:
Symptoms I Included
- Spinning sensation
Symptoms That Were Options I Wanted to Include
- Craving to eat ice, dirt or paper
- Fear of air
- Impaired social skills
- Punching or kicking in sleep
- Sense of impending doom
They really do offer a comprehensive list, which would seem to give you a better idea of just what’s going on. But, for proof nothing beats a real MD, here’s the list of possible conditions they offered:
Conditions I’m Pretty Sure I Don’t Have
- Middle ear infection
- Anemia, chronic disease
- Anemia, iron deficiency
- Generalized anxiety disorder
- Medication reaction or side-effect
- Migraine headache
- Insulin reaction (hypoglycemia)
- Panic attack
- Chronic sinusitis
Conditions That Seem Logical, But Unlikely
- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
- Diabetes, type 2
- Heart rhythm disorder
Most Likely Condition Causing Symptoms
- Excessive caffeine usage
Yeah, so that said, I’m scheduling a physical examination today. Even if I have to hear I’m fine, I’m fine with that. It’s one of those better-safe-than-sorry scenarios.
My guess? It’s all mental. My sister lost her best friend just a couple of weeks ago to a pulmonary embolism. She was 21, in perfect health, and all of a sudden, her body failed her.
I do what I can to stay healthy. I eat right, work out regularly, get plenty of sleep, take a daily multivitamin and fish oil. I should have very little to be worried about here. Still, I’m getting the physical exam because I would rather be proactive concerning my health. Now that I’ve got health insurance, why not?