Jessie J spent Christmas at the hospital after suffering an episode of Ménière’s disease — a disorder of the inner ear that causes vertigo, ringing in the ears, hearing loss, and a fullness in the ear. According to the singer, the syndrome left her deaf and unable to walk. “I woke up and felt like I was completely deaf in my right ear, couldn’t walk in a straight line,” Jessie said on Instagram. “Basically, I got told I had Meniere’s syndrome.”
“I know that a lot of people suffer from it, and I’ve actually had a lot of people reach out to me and give me great advice, so I’ve just been laying low in silence,” she added. “Now’s the first time I’ve been able to sing and bear it. I just miss singing so much and being around anyone.” Although it is unclear what causes Ménière‘s disease, experts assure that it could be both genetic and environmental factors. It is reported that the annual incidence rate for the disease is 15 per 100,000 people, with a prevalence rate of about 218 per 100,000 people.
Mayo Clinic informed the disease can “unexpectedly interrupt” people’s life, causing fatigue and stress. The syndrome has a course of 5 to 15 years; here, people could end up with mild disequilibrium and hearing loss. Unfortunately, there is no cure; however, the “Who You Are” interpreter is optimistic, hopeful, and thankful. “It could be way worse; it is what it is. I’m super grateful for my health. It just threw me off. On Christmas Eve, I was in the ear hospital going, ‘What is going on?’ But I’m glad I went early, and they worked out what it was real quick, and I got put on the right medicine, so I feel a lot better today,” she said.
According to the singer, she is having a hard time doing basic activities, including watching television. “When I sing loud, it sounds like there’s someone trying to run out of my ear… I am now watching Queen’s Gambit with my finger in my ear. I’ve done the first episode four times because I [have] zero focus, and my ear sounds like someone crawled in and turned a hairdryer on,” she explained.
The 32-year-old United Kingdom native also sent a message of love to her millions of fans. “Sending LOVE to everyone who needs it, is or isn’t alone. We all need some extra love. This Christmas might be a little off. BUT one in a lifetime isn’t bad when some people haven’t had one good one in their lifetime,” she wrote. “Think about what you do have this week, not what you don’t.”
The singer continued recommending everyone to stay safe and follow World Health Organization protocols. “Remember to wear a mask and be careful out there. We have to work together to get through this and WASH those mince pie crumbs covered hands,” she joked.