Why did I almost pass out this morning?
April 16, 2009 3:21 PM   Subscribe

Dizziness, nausea, pale lips... what happened to me this morning?

As I was getting ready for work this morning, I began feeling dizzy and light-headed, like I was going to pass out. I looked in the mirror and saw that I was paler than usual, and my lips were so pale they were nearly colorless.

I stumbled over to my bed and laid down for a very short time (maybe two minutes) and I was fine.

The thing is, this has happened before. Very rarely-- I'm talking once or twice *a year*. And it always happens as I am getting ready for work in the morning. And I lay down for a bit and I'm fine.

Since it is so rare and always at the same time of day, I am thinking something I do behaviorally is prompting it, rather than there being some underlying medical condition. I'd like to know what I possibly did so I can stop doing it.

For the record, there is exactly 0% chance that I am pregnant.

(You are not my doctor, etc.)
posted by christie to Health & Fitness (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Low blood sugar?
posted by lakeroon at 3:29 PM on April 16, 2009

Maybe a blood pressure thing? A friend of mine occasionally has sudden random drops in blood pressure that cause her to pass out. Had you been drinking enough water lately? Maybe if you occasionally get a little too dehydrated, by the time you're up and around your body has caught up to the low blood pressure problem and it reacts.
posted by olinerd at 3:29 PM on April 16, 2009

Happens to me in the morning if I don't drink enough fluids. I fainted once in the shower.

Now I drink lots of water.
posted by nikkorizz at 3:30 PM on April 16, 2009

When I take a multi-vitamin on an empty stomach, or even on a small breakfast, it makes me dizzy and nauseated.

Additionally, if I go more than 14 hours without eating, I get dizzy and nauseated.
posted by muddgirl at 3:32 PM on April 16, 2009

orthostatic hypotension. basically your blood pressure drops suddenly when you stand up or change position. happens to me occasionally. wouldn't worry about it unless it starts to happen a lot.
posted by thinkingwoman at 3:42 PM on April 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'd guess you stood up too quickly after bending down for some reason (tying shoes or whatever). I get this only in the morning, probably because I pound coffee before breakfast which makes me slightly light-headed to begin with. I'm pretty sure it's harmless.
posted by cj_ at 4:17 PM on April 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

Had you eaten breakfast? If not, I'd say low blood sugar. Low blood pressure is another option. I'd get checked out by your doctor. What if it happens when you're driving or walking down stairs or in some other possibly dangerous situation?
posted by deborah at 4:20 PM on April 16, 2009

orthostatic hypotension

This. I have low blood pressure and have to be careful getting up in the morning. (Not that I'm ever eager to do so anyway.)
posted by JoanArkham at 4:21 PM on April 16, 2009

It could be a combo of low blood pressure and low blood sugar. It wouldn't hurt to get checked out by a physician. Moderately low blood pressure is a good thing; many athletes and other physically fit people have it; some people have inherit it. It means that your heart is working very efficiently.
posted by ragtimepiano at 5:41 PM on April 16, 2009

Sorry, was in a hurry---meant "some people have inherited it."
posted by ragtimepiano at 5:45 PM on April 16, 2009

If you have a bowel movement in the morning, you may be stimulating your vagus nerve by excessive straining, which can cause a vasovagal episode. This can include dizziness, fainting, nausea, vomiting, pallor, and perspiration.

Or as others have said, it could be low blood sugar or orthostatic hypotension.
posted by tr0ubley at 6:02 PM on April 16, 2009

Have you checked out labyrinthitis? Both of my parents have it, and the symptoms you describe are quite similar to what happens to them, without any warning: rare and unpredictable dizziness with nausea.
posted by SmazenySyr at 6:16 PM on April 16, 2009

That's happened to me a few times. I think I was just dehydrated.
posted by chiraena at 7:04 PM on April 16, 2009

Medication related? (Probably not if you've had it that long.)
posted by unrepentanthippie at 6:06 PM on April 18, 2009

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