When intoxicated and in a pitch black room, why do you get the spins when your eyes are closed, but not when open?


I’m pretty shitfaced right now and the room is pitch black and staring off into the distance I’m fine, but when I close my eyes I get the spins.

What’s the difference?

In: Biology

I don’t know but that’s when you know you’ve had too much to drink. Stay alive, don’t drive!

Likely points of reference. If you can see something, you know you aren’t spinning. If your eyes are closed your brain doesn’t know it isn’t spinning.

I always found if I’m lying on the bed and put one foot on the ground off the edge of the bed with my eyes closed, my spins stop. Good luck buddy!

If you are in a truly pitch black room, it will likely be as dizzying as having your eyes shut. However, if there is any light giving you vision, your brain compensates for the disruption in inner ear function (which leads to the sensation of imbalance) through visual pathways. One of these pathways is the vestibulo-ocular reflex, which makes minute changes to your eye movements when you move your head, resulting in a sensation of balance. This reflex occurs primarily without you noticing. Try this experiment: move your head from side to side, as if shaking no. Your eyes should not jerk from side to side. Then, close your eyes and place the tips of your fingers very lightly (do not push) on your eyelids. Move your head from side to side. You should be able to feel your eyes reflexively jerk back and forth into position. This is because the reflex is exaggerated when vision is lost. Therefore, when you drink and you hinder your inner ear function via the effects of alcohol, and then remove your compensatory visual input by closing your eyes, your sensation of balance is further disrupted and you feel more dizzy.