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I have read that phantom smells are common after a brain injury. Have you experienced any?

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Absolutely. When I being wheeled down the hall to get a brain scan about a half hour after I stroked I had the most delicious smell of a fresh peeled orange. When I was in ICU, rehab and then 1st came home about 5 weeks post stroke I could barely get my fill of oranges, There were other odors over time that have come and gone but that one stands out.

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Absolutely. Though forget about the direction that is was coming from real or imaginary. The strangest disconnect is the first sniff  of a dish or food and finally bitting into it to find that the taste was very different. And don't get me started on trying to scratch those phantom itches:raising-cane:

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That darn Leprechaun itch I call it. Mine jumps around on my face, left side. Ear, nostril, eye, ear again, neck, cheek. The arm, leg and torso at other or the same time. So I'm wondering as when you have a cast on the limb itches as the bone heals, it this a slight healing possibly.

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I do not have phantom itches but the smells.. Oh boy I smell cigarette smoke and I , not meaning too, think my mom has forgave me but when she cooked her famous ( to us) pot roast I told her it smelled like garbage . I had to leave the house

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smells I haven't had, but I certainly know those itches. The weirdest ones are when the bone itches not the skin and you really can't scratch it!

Will, fingers crossed the itches mean that a nerve that hasn't been communicating with the brain has started to and the brain is not sure where to file the signal/sensation so it could be a sign of healing, the trouble is without knowing the source of the sensation it's hard for you to direct your brain on how to file it.

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Wouldn't a little healing be wonderful heathber? So hard to say though. We have those days when we can't believe how good we are doing and then bam the tank is totally empty an hour later. Kelli the smoke smell would bother me. It has been years since I quit. The best is when we do go out to eat we don't ever smell it. Early on when I 1st came home my sister in law was sitting me while April was at work. Her husband burned a bagel in the toaster because she said he likes them that way. That was the worst ever. I thought I was going to be sick for sure.

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I have no trouble believing a smell can make you feel sick, or that brain insult can "create" smells. Pre stroke I used to get migraines. Not just the bad headache lots of people think is a migraine. One of the ways to know a true migraine is that one or more of your main senses becomes hyper sensitive, that combined with gut hypostasis which really sucks and means oral medications don't work. The most common migraine hyper sensitivity is lights and noise, but I used to get taste and smell migraine. Thankfully my stroke seems to have "cured" my migraines, although it's not a cure I'd recommend I'll take it as a bonus 🙂

 

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Well right not a prescribed cure per se but that is really nice that you don't have to deal with that along with our daily challenges. Years ago a friend of mine had them and it was tough for her not knowing when the next was coming. She had the seems to be more common light sensibility migraines.

 

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Yep thankfully I never got the semi regular migraines my Mum and sister lived with, and that they now control with the new daily preventative medications, mine where only a couple of times a year but it would wipe me out for a week.  Current problems are not fun but in some ways easier to deal with (more predictable for a start)

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On 4/13/2021 at 3:14 PM, Willis said:

 Kelli the smoke smell would bother me. It has been years since I quit. The best is when we do go out to eat we don't ever smell it. 

Yes, I quit right after my stroke and they say ex smokers are the worst. But I can admit EVERY once in a while, I don't mind the smell of a menthol. Crazy.. I'd never smoke again though. 12 +  cold turkey as they say. I'm not sure if a doctor or nurse or a mental  Hallucination  but I was told if I smoke again I'll die.  So.. stopped for I was sacred to die....

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On 4/15/2021 at 12:28 PM, ksmith said:

Yes, I quit right after my stroke and they say ex smokers are the worst. But I can admit EVERY once in a while, I don't mind the smell of a menthol. Crazy.. I'd never smoke again though. 12 +  cold turkey as they say. I'm not sure if a doctor or nurse or a mental  Hallucination  but I was told if I smoke again I'll die.  So.. stopped for I was sacred to die....

It took me a while but I did finally quit in the mid 80's. April quit a few years before when we agreed we would. I cut way down but still was cheating some. I worked an hour away at a major university in Detroit and my boss smoked Kool Milds, My brand and he was always willing to share. I probably was smoking 3 or 4 a day total back then. What I learned about situations triggering my craving and addiction was interesting to me. When I was making that 50 mile commute as I got closer to work smoking a coffin nail would pop into my mind and a stop in to see the boss and "borrow" a smoke was almost automatic. How ever as I would return home after work smoking never entered my mind. Now days how does anyone justify that habit? You would think the price would inspire a person alone but somes addictions are stronger and harder to break. I really do get that.

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  • 1 month later...

Itches are the worst.

 

💚👑

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Oh wow! YES YES YES!!!!! I have overstimulated senses...all of them. Like I smell smells that no one else smells. A lot. Also, good smells like air freshener things for your car (I always used to like them) usually seem soooooo over smelly that i have to take it out. I just gave Hailey a whole package of like 10 because I couldn't take the smell. My Doctor and I have agreed that neither of us is sure that i smell an actual smell some times or if it is a hallucination.🥴 (I sometimes do get hallucinations) My hearing kinda is crazy too and I bet lots of others probably experience this too. I have a seriously strong startle reflex and just the smallest unexpected sound or thing can scare the crap out of me and i have a very physical reaction. Also, if there are lots of people talking I have trouble processing and I am very overwhelmed. Or a loud agitating sound to me (like a loud boom boom car, kids screaming, fireworks (so many others))... can bring on a lot of anxiety and sometimes panic attacks. Vision well that is a lot (lights, patterns, flashes, car lights, street lights, I could swear I see my Kitty everywhere but he isn't there, movement, moving in a car as a passenger... and tons more). My taste has changed a lot... there are several things i used to love but i am so turned off by them now. Touch... this is funny now but when i was watching my sisters preteens they wanted to make slime. I took the dollar store and we got everything we needed to make slime. They knew exactly how to make it. Ok... this hits me in 2 ways 1st: the actual look of it especially when it is being pulled apart makes me gag (seriously gag) and then i touched it (gag, gag, gag, gag) I had to go away and let my stepmom watch them or i was going to throw up lol. I don't know if i talked about all senses but yeah haha i totally get it. :crazy:

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Posted (edited)
On 4/14/2021 at 12:52 PM, heathber said:

Thankfully my stroke seems to have "cured" my migraines, although it's not a cure I'd recommend I'll take it as a bonus 🙂

Funny you should have said that, did you read my mail when I said that I don't even have headaches these days!  In the old days my migraines were like yours that forced me to resort to  a darkened room until tablets got rid of the discomfort and left me absolutely flattened.

 Deigh

Edited by Deigh
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Interesting that you are experiencing 'phantom smells'. I have the same experience often myself when it smells like someone has lit a bonfire not too far away. These are totally banned in summer here  and all year round when there is a dry spell on. Up till reading your mail I presumed that someone had lit a sneaky one on their back garden.

Deigh

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I've been reading this fascinating book. The Body Keeps the Score - Mind Brain and Body in the transformation of Trauma, by Bessel Van Der Klok.

I bet he would have some very interesting theories as to why and how our brains do this. Particularly for Tracy and the slime 🙂

 

If you have the time and energy it's a great book, I haven't finished it yet but it feels "right". I'm curious about what he will say when it gets to the treatment bit, so far it's all been about psychotherapy history, brain structure, communication between different parts of the brain and the body and how that changes with trauma. He uses a pretty broad definition of trauma too.

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That is very interesting Heather. I will have to look that book up! Deigh I am often questioning my own senses i.e. smell. I can promise you that when I walk into my stepmoms Den I smell moth balls. She is adament that there are none. I however can smell them every time. Wow, thinking about it this kind of thing happens all the time. I suppose I don't think about how much. One register where my air comes out smells odd to me every time it blows. I catch myself removing it and looking down into the duct or around the area on the floor just to find nothing. No one else smells it except me. I have tried hard to have others check it out when I smell the smell. They all look at me and say "I don't smell anything.". 🤦‍♀️

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Janelle I just realized you have added something I said as a quote to each of your posts. That just warms my heart. 💗 I'm glad you enjoy enough to share my thought. ((Hugs))

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On 5/19/2021 at 11:38 PM, HostTracy said:

"I could swear I see my Kitty everywhere but he isn't there"

Tracy, funny that you mention this. I previously mentioned in a past post that my cat Fuzz will often pass under between my foot rest and my recliner chair with his tail in the air. He purposely hits the undersides of my outstretched legs with his tail to get my attentions as he circles around the footrest. This is his notice that he wants me to follow him to the backdoor to let him out as he likes to lounge on the pool deck and run the perimeter of my yard enclosed by a tall 6' wood fence. (clever little monkey)..anyway, after awaking from a light sleep to follow him out to the back door, I found him dead asleep in his family room chair! It was such a vivid experience, that I sat back down amazed by the experience. I don't subscribe to any kind of multiple hallucination theories but it was very real and doesn't happen with any frequencies, pre or post stroke. I call it my "phantom Fuzz!" I can relate to much of your post experiences. Almost like post-stroke has opened a door to my imagination!

 

I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one that has experienced these anomalies. That's what intrigues me about this forum, sharing similar experiences that would seem kind of out there but in fact we seem to be on a similar wavelength, thank you.

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On 5/21/2021 at 10:49 AM, will2 said:

I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one that has experienced these anomalies. That's what intrigues me about this forum, sharing similar experiences that would seem kind of out there but in fact we seem to be on a similar wavelength, thank you.

Will I am glad to be in good company! Your post reminds me of my Bella (my other kitty) who really enjoys to to touch my feet when i am in my recliner with her cold nose ever so gently...pretty much any time she comes near (It absolutely drives me insane!) :dumb: LOL

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17 hours ago, heathber said:

Nothing like knowing we are all going crazy in our own way but still all the same 🙂

Again, at least we are in good company! :crazy: Not that I want anyone to have any crazy in them... I do feel less alone. 🙂

 

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Just yesterday I saw a commercial from a pharmaceutical company for Parkinson's disease and it had an older gent displaying symptoms of onset Parkinson's, it was referring to hallucinations or delusions, the video showed him seeing a second image of his dog at the same time, side by side at the same time. Alluding to possible hallucinations/delusion. With that said, one thing is certain in my case, if there may be "two" of the Fuzz, at least one of them is in his chair, and in deep, deep, sleep!:sleeping:p3935986601-3.jpg

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Yay for the Fuzz, that's one happy and extremely relaxed kitty 🙂  Jade's phantom jumps on my bed when I'm half asleep and she's in the other room.

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