Expat Life in Dubai

The heat is on in Dubai.

May 9, 2011

Yes it is and it’s not even summer yet but my immune system is already acting up on it. Last Saturday, I was not able to go to work simply because I was feeling dizzy and I have this nauseating feeling the whole day. I thought that my monthly period has something to do with it as it was my first day but earlier this afternoon, at around 12nn I suddenly felt dizzy again. I thought there’s an earthquake as I can feel myself moving back and forth, my colleague asked if I’m ok because I was in the middle of a sentence, talking to him and then I stopped. After some time, I started sweating and feeling nauseous. I can’t help but panic because that’s what I usually feel before fainting. Yes, I’ve had a lot of those fainting episodes here in Dubai. The first thing I would feel is dizziness and nausea, then comes the cold sweat and then my sight getting blurred then the next thing I know, I’m inside a cab while the driver is hysterically asking if I’m ok and telling me that he’s bringing me to the nearest hospital (I will always be grateful to that cab driver who saw me collapsing on my way to work some time last year). So fearing that I might faint at that time and causing a scene inside my workplace is not really my cup of tea, I asked the supervisor if I can go home early as I’m not feeling well. She said ok and then off I went to UNICARE in Burjuman to get myself checked. Well the thing is, I do suffer from vertigo from time to time and these vertigo episodes increases during summer. I’m not sure if it has something to do with the heat or I’m just doing something wrong every summer (I’m already guilty of not drinking enough water.)

What is vertigo?

Vertigo is a type of dizziness, where there is a feeling of motion when one is stationary. It is the feeling that you or your environment is moving or spinning. It differs from dizziness in that vertigo describes an illusion of movement. When you feel as if you yourself are moving, it’s called subjective vertigo, and the perception that your surroundings are moving is called objective vertigo. The symptoms are due to a dysfunction of the vestibular system in the inner ear. It is often associated with nausea and vomiting as well as difficulties standing or walking. The most common causes are benign paroxysmal positional vertigo and vestibular migraine while less common causes include Ménière’s disease and vestibular neuritis. Excessive consumption of ethanol (alcoholic beverages) can also cause notorious symptoms of vertigo.

So no, I’m not making it up. There really is such a thing called vertigo and most of the people who has it doesn’t know that they have it. I just started having those when I came here to Dubai and the very first time was also during summer. I am no doctor so I can’t really say that the heat causes it but I never have those episodes when it’s cold.

Anyway, so the doctor took my blood pressure and it was normal. He asked me if I have health insurance, I asked him why. He said that he wants to run some tests on me but if I don’t have a health insurance he can just prescribe some medicines that I should take and if the dizziness doesn’t stop then we can do the tests then. I told him that I don’t have a health insurance but I want him to run the tests now as I want to get to the root cause of this problem urgently because seriously, fainting is not really a fun thing to do and getting sick in a foreign country all by yourself is nasty! So they took some blood and stool sample (yuck!) to do the blood count and to see if I’ve eaten anything bad. He prescribed some medicines for vomiting and dizziness and asked me to call him tomorrow for the result of these tests. I went home, took a shower and slept for 3 hours. I’m feeling okay now and hopefully, will be this way the whole day tomorrow.

So yes, I hate summer in Dubai.

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