“Off” Days

On Wednesday I saw a GP who swapped out my anxiety med from Sertraline to Citalopram and on Friday another GP swapped one of my BP meds from Doxazosin to BP Losartan. I’ve started to take all three at night and for two days the nausea and lightheadedness has been much better - even had a little dance to The Pet Shop Boys at Glastonbury last night.

Then today I’ve got a really fuzzy head that feels too heavy to hold up. I forced myself to go for a daily walk (trying to each day) but I feel really off.

Is it normal to have these ‘off’ days? Is it part of the stroke fatigue and is it usual to be up and down? The heavy head feeling kind of scared me a bit - has anyone else felt this especially in the early weeks of recovery?

Thanks for listening folks it does help just to get things ‘out’ sometimes :pray:

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Hi, can empathise with you. I am not on all the Meds you are, but like you I get such really off days. I think part of it is Stroke Fatigue and I have now learned to live with it after nearly 2 years. The Heavy Head part of it I get regularly, but mine is more like a pressure in the Head…and the only way I can ease it is to wear a very tight hat on my head (like a tight bobble hat ) I look pretty silly in the nice weather, but who cares if it works!!! So I do understand where you are coming from. You are not alone in this.
Thinking of you. Jane.

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It is very normal to feel fuzzy headed in the early weeks after a stroke. In my case it was “early months”. I still feel fuzzy headed some days, and it’s been almost 4 years. Likewise with the stroke fatigue. I still have days where I feel almost as I did pre-stroke, and I think I’m fully healed, then I’ll have a day where I am extremely tired. Also, it took me many months to adjust to the new medications I had to take. So, some of what you’re experiencing could be due to your body trying to adjust to all the changes. Since the beginning, though, things have gotten progressively better. But it has taken a long itme. We have all gone through somewhat different, and yet very similar, experiences with having a stroke. So, we’re glad to bend an ear, and answer any questions you might have as best we can. Hope you feel better soon. :slightly_smiling_face: :heart:Jeanne


Good to hear swapping your meds has helped improve things for you.
The heavy / fuzzy head feeling is part of the stroke i’d say. I had it pretty constantly for first 4 - 5 months. It’s less frequent now but I still get it especially when I am fatigued. I’m sure it’ll improve as time goes on for you.

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if you can get a phone appointment I would mention the changes (both positive and negative) after the medication changes, just so that the GPs are aware, but the fuzzy head feeling probably is part of the Stroke.

I am 10 months in to this and have times when I feel almost OK and then WHAM fatigue and dizziness kick in. I have just had a lovely couple of days visiting relatives, chatting to people I haven’t seen for ages, travelling the length of the country (as a passenger I’ll admit) and felt fine on getting back and now, today I it has caught up with me and I have had to spend a couple of hours “watching” the tennis

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Hi. After six years I still get down days and rarely get days when I feel ‘the old me’. I have learned to accept the down days as part of the territory. Take care.

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I also take Citalopram but i do take in the afternoon.
yes this fuzzy, heavy, numb head is so unexplainable.
living with it from last 3 and half years.

i do like to wear hair band the cloth one. it helps keeps my head/brain at its place.

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@DDMH, I am a year and a half post stroke. I am taking Citalopram (10mg), it took me six weeks to adjust to the meds but everyone is different. My experience post-stroke was brain fog for the first six months, and regular fatigue days where I could only just function in and out of bed. I am still limited in my functionality, although the brain fog has lifted. I hit brick walls if I overdo it or have a busy week and then I need a rest day. Heavy headed fatigue is fairly persistent. Sometimes, I forget myself and then it all comes crashing down.

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Hi folks. It was helpful hearing your common problems. I have helt likr i should be over it nearly 6 months. But tiredness, dizziness and breathing problems a real pain in the last fortnight. The heat clearly makes things worse. I went back. To work after 3 months and been working for around 5 weeks. Then got stressed at work and BP shot up. Never gone up like that since the stroke. Aphasia kicks in when stressed. But the fatigue is overwhelming.

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@prufrock hi and welcome to our forum I’m sorry you had a stroke. Time is a healer as you read through, little steps and plenty rest. Look forward to chatting. Best wishes keep going Loraine

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@prufrock welcome to the forum. You’ve done well getting back to work after 3 months. Make sure you look after yourself though. 3 months is very early & stress & high BP are stroke risk factors & need to be kept under control. Be kind to yourself sounds like your body is telling you you need to rest.
Best wishes
Ann x

Thanks so much. I feel guilty a lot of the time about taking leave and alsi survivor guilt given my stroke could have been worse. Aphasia lasted a little over a month. But weakness persisted.

Yeah. Feels bad doesn’t it and my wife cannot experience it. The citalipram change will also kick in. But that subsides in itself. I hate the beta blockers personally. Got 8 drugs vying for a each other to compete a crap day.

You shouldn’t feel guilty about any of it. Strokes come in all shapes & sizes but that doesn’t make yours any less an event. Everything you describe are normal stroke effects & take time to recover from. You’ve had a brain injury & the brain needs to rest so you can recover. I had a “minor” stroke but some of my ongoing symptoms (8 months on) feel anything but minor. Try not to compare to others as everyone is starting from a different place on their recovery journey. Just look after yourself, health far more Important than work.

Lovely reply. It means a lot to hear from people who have had a stroke. It gives perspective. I hope you are bearing up. Enjoy the cooler nights ahead


@prufrock i second everything @Mrs5K has said. Wise words. Hope everyone gets a cooler nights sleep tonight. We are here to chat and support each other. Never feel guilty of resting our brains take time to re connect so rest when needed :grinning:

Hi @prufrock welcome, fatigue can make things difficult, it seems to linger for quite some time too.

Take it easy, even though you’re back at work don’t forget to factor in rest breaks throughout the day, your brain still needs rest to recover from the trauma it’s been through.

Best wishes

You’re doing great, to be back at work. I am 4 years post stroke, and I still feel tired. The heat does make things worse. My blood pressure went up after my stroke., too. I think a lot of it was the stress of the whole experience. Also, since my stoke, I seem to react to things more, and negatives really take their toll more than they used to. Do you have to work? Maybe more rest time would be helpful. Try to minimize stress as much as possible. Your brain is still in the healing stages, so you need lots of rest. :slightly_smiling_face: :heart:Jeanne


Just wondered if anyone has found a.way of helping the ‘fuzzy’ head effect? I’m still getting this after my post 28 days ago and realise it pretty much coincides with my starting Citalopram just 5 days before (after switching from Sertraline). I didn’t have it immediately after my stroke at all.

I’m tempted to take a Co-Codamol just to see if it helps but I’m a bit scared :scream:

I know it can be a symptom of anxiety too.

@DDMH hi I sometimes get a fuzzy head but I lie down if it comes on and drink plenty of water and rest usually clears mine. I’m all settled on my medication so I know the difference.

Maybe have a word with your GP. Depending how old you are if they have taken your HRT away (if you were taking it) (sorry if I’m wrong it’s just a thought) then that can cause fuzzy type of head feeling.

Good luck hope you get sorted loraine

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