Damn migraines - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 02-16-2008, 07:58 PM
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I know I've seen some threads on this before, but I just want to start a new one, cause I feel bad today.



So I get migraines. I have for about 13 years or so (sometimes several a week to one every few months). I woke up with one today and it's made the day ****ty.



What do people here do that seems to help? (for those that get them)



Sometimes hot packs and cold packs seem to help.



Along with bad headaches, I have light sensitivities, hearing sensitivities, everything seems to smell bad (and really powerful), my tummy gets upset... It makes for a miserable nogardsram.

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#2 Old 02-16-2008, 08:05 PM
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I have been able to halt or severely diminish most of my recent migraines by taking an Advil and a "real" Sudaphed at the first sign that one is coming. My migraines seem to be sinus/period related and this combination has been a lifesaver. However, I do occasionally get one that I cannot stop, and oy! it's bad. Once the nausea sets in, I know my day is ruined.

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#3 Old 02-16-2008, 08:08 PM
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I've suffered from migraines most of my life.



My strategy is 800mg of ibuprofen [prescription] washed down with something caffeinated. ..if that doesn't do the job, I'll pop another 800-1600mg of ibuprofen.



Nowadays, most of my migraines are stress-related.

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#4 Old 02-16-2008, 08:10 PM
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I get migraines too. The only thing that really helps the bad ones is throwing up and then sleeping in a dark room after telling everybody to please be quiet for a while, preferably a few days.



But I find that making sure to get enough sleep and drink enough liquids helps. Also, I use lavender, marjoram and/or rose oils sometimes, or rub peppermint oil on the back of my neck and temples.



Would a hot bath help?



I hope it goes away soon. That really sucks.

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#5 Old 02-16-2008, 08:25 PM
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I'm sorry to hear that, Nogardsram.



I have sensory sensitivities as well. Chemcials and oher smells, sounds, light, visual irritants (fast-moving visuals or repeditive visuals, like the boy fidgeting), my own physical movement, and even touch give me awful migraines (as well as making me feel dizzy/nauseous). Stress is a huge trigger, too.



I don't like meds as they never seem to help but what does help me is lying down in a very dark, quiet room (or putting something over my eyes to make it as dark as possible), without moving. Sometimes rubbing or putting light pressure on the back of my head, my throat, neck and shoulders help as well because usually they are all hurting at once.
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#6 Old 02-16-2008, 08:42 PM
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I've tried a variety of over the counter and prescription drugs (btw I hate, hate, hate taking drugs and I hate saying hate...). Sometimes the drugs seem to work, and then nope never more. Sometimes the aches get works after taking them. I've never found a consistency with them so I tend to avoid them (although I'm always willing to try something for the damn migraines).



I found this thing called a migrastick. It has peppermint and lavender essential oils and something else. Mostly it makes it so all I smell (or mostly smell) are those soothing smells (and it's kind of relaxing).



I actually took a bath today, but I felt better while in it, but worse afterwards.



I've mostly been in bed today with cold packs occasionally, and stuff over the windows to make it darker, while trying to eat what little food I can tolerate.

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#7 Old 02-16-2008, 09:19 PM
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I've got a migrastick! I'm sure how much it really helps, but it feels good!



I try to sleep mine off. I've really found nothing else. A lot of my headaches are sinus-related, so I try to do things for my sinuses first, but I can't find anything that will stop a full-fledged migraine.
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#8 Old 02-16-2008, 10:15 PM
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for those w/ sinus related headaches...have you tried the neti pots?? i heart mine sooo much!!



usually, for me, i have to sleep it off too.

if coffee, asprin and dark glasses dont work....

antihistamines (like benedryl) will help slow things down (dizzyness) and can help relieve nausea. excedrin migraine used to help me too.



and my mother and bff who suffer from them so much worse have really had success w/ the prescription (i think is called) imitrex. you only take one or two pills when it starts up and its apparently really great. if even my mother will relent to using it, it must work!



i dont get them so much any more...but i have noticed that i and lots of pple seem to get them on cold days that are really sunny. i think it has something to do w/ the vessels being cold (and therefore restricted) and having to function more on sunny days. i dunno, just my theory.lol.
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#9 Old 02-16-2008, 10:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LucidAnne View Post

for those w/ sinus related headaches...have you tried the neti pots?? i heart mine sooo much!!



I want to try one so badly! I have terrible allergies year round as well as a deviated septum and I've heard they can help with the symptoms. As far as antihistamines go, I seem to be allergic to them, or at least the ones I've tried. But the neti pot, or 'nose bidet' as I heard it called on Oprah, seems like it would help.
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#10 Old 02-16-2008, 10:44 PM
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After kicking my abusive ex out of the house, I used to get TERRIBLE ones...with the nausea and everything...



I know this was very unhealthy... But when my alarm would go off, I would take 4-5 Excedrine (a double-dose) and go back to bed until they kicked in. They worked better than my prescription.



Also, I noticed a BIG difference in their severity when I started sleeping on one of those special neck support pillows. They work great whether you're a 'side-sleeper' or a 'back-sleeper.'

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#11 Old 02-16-2008, 11:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Hang~Ten~Honey View Post

I want to try one so badly! I have terrible allergies year round as well as a deviated septum and I've heard they can help with the symptoms. As far as antihistamines go, I seem to be allergic to them, or at least the ones I've tried. But the neti pot, or 'nose bidet' as I heard it called on Oprah, seems like it would help.



oh do try it!!

i cannot recommend it enough. i spent so many years w/ sinus "iinfections", on and off antibiotics, neuralgia, etc etc...and not to mention the debilitating pain that would radiate down my face, neck, shoulders, back and chest. then i tried the neti b/c i would get a stuffy nose at night...and really! the pain was nearly gone that week.



i figure, if anyone suffers from pain, esp when involving head/ face/ upper back, its worth trying the neti, to kinda clear things out,its an easy thing to do and (imo) is better than having to rely on meds and such.
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#12 Old 02-16-2008, 11:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LucidAnne View Post

for those w/ sinus related headaches...have you tried the neti pots??



I have not tried it, but thanks for the tip! I'll give almost anything a go if it'll mean I don't get or it lessens the severity of my headaches.



I'm not sure if mine are really sinus related, but I guess I'll see. Although I do have some pollen allergies and dust/mold allergies.

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#13 Old 02-17-2008, 07:27 AM
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I love my neti pot!



Quote:
Originally Posted by LovelyPerv View Post

I know this was very unhealthy... But when my alarm would go off, I would take 4-5 Excedrine (a double-dose) and go back to bed until they kicked in. They worked better than my prescription.



If this is just a random migraine thing, that's probably fine. But drugs like Excedrine can cause rebound headaches. It's like an addiction. When the drug wears off it creates a headache and you have to take more just to get rid of the headache caused by the headache cure.



My mother has chronic migraines and she used to be addicted to Excedrine. Every morning for many years she'd wake up with a terrible headache and she'd have to take five or more Excedrine just to get out of bed. She ended up with a bleeding ulcer and nearly died. She still takes it for her headaches sometimes, but she has to be careful now to let rebound headaches run their course so that she doesn't get addicted again.
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#14 Old 02-17-2008, 07:58 AM
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I'm down to two, but I still take them every day!!!

I wind up with a 'brain-fog' if I don't.

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For without it, we would be lost.
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#15 Old 02-17-2008, 08:22 AM
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I get horrible migraines, accompanied by light sensitivity and aversion to loud noises. I used to try and sleep them off, although getting to sleep would take hours, since the pain would be too intense. Painkillers wouldn't do anything, until I discovered pills geared specifically towards alleviating migraines. Migraleve (a UK pill) was suggested to me, but unfortunately, it contains gelatin (but why???), so I just found a vegetarian generic pill with the same active ingredients as migraleve and that seems to actually work, especially if I take the pills close to the onset of the migraine. Each pill I take (Boots migraine relief or something equivalent to that) contains 500mg of paracetamol and 8mg of codeine, and I usually take 2. I tend to avoid taking them too often, since I do value my kidneys, but I don't get migraines that often. I've tried to measure how long it takes for the pills to work, and it ranges from 20 minutes to a bit less than an hour.



Oh, and has anybody else experienced relief from the migraine after they've thrown up? When my migraines get really intense, I have very bad nausea, and each time I've actually had to throw up, I discovered that my migraine disappeared afterwards. I suspect a link between possible food triggers and migraines, but the nausea isn't always present, so I haven't come to any conclusions yet.
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#16 Old 02-17-2008, 08:47 AM
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For me, it helps best to take ibuprofen before the headache starts (which means that you need to feel them coming, I don't know if that always works for you). If I take it before the pain starts, I need a much lower dose for it to be effective. However, the ibuprofen does nothing for the disorientation I feel, only sleep helps for that. So, sleep, would be my advice. But I think these things are really different for each person, so you'll need to find something that helps for you... Good luck!
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#17 Old 02-17-2008, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mazikeen View Post

Oh, and has anybody else experienced relief from the migraine after they've thrown up? When my migraines get really intense, I have very bad nausea, and each time I've actually had to throw up, I discovered that my migraine disappeared afterwards. I suspect a link between possible food triggers and migraines, but the nausea isn't always present, so I haven't come to any conclusions yet.



The only relief I ever feel by throwing up when I have a migraine is that my tummy feels better, and perhaps a slight reprieve in the migraine, but not to the point where it goes away.

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#18 Old 02-17-2008, 10:50 AM
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Have any of you who get migranes ever noticed a correlation between your headaches and how hydrated you are? I only ask because my wife almost always gets one when the Santa Ana winds come through, and if she's well hydrated she has a better chance of getting through it without as much difficulty.
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#19 Old 02-17-2008, 11:03 AM
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Well, one of the ways I know I have a migraine coming on (not always, but sometimes) is that I start peeing a lot more than usual. However, I usually try to up my water consumption by quite a bit when that happens.

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#20 Old 02-17-2008, 11:49 AM
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I had migraines starting in middle school, and they became stronger and more frequent until I was having migraines 5-6 days a week (pretty much constant with one rolling into another). I've been able to cut them down to one every week or every other week by taking a feverfew/magnesium supplement daily and being gluten free. Sadly, this doesn't keep me from getting a migraine from really obvious triggers like focusing really large, bright cameras, hormones or big hot<-->cold weather changes, but it keeps me fairly sane.



I try to avoid taking excedrin, anacin and other otc migraine/pain relievers b/c I know I'll start getting them more frequently due to rebounding. I also avoid prescriptions like imitrex because (oh man, the trips) they are really strong for me. I've had sequences of hours/days after taking those where I can't remember much of anything so I really try to focus on preventing them rather than treating them.
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#21 Old 02-17-2008, 12:30 PM
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My daughter was getting headaches that she thought were migraines, but turned out to be Occipital Neuralgia. I've never heard of it before. Now that she was diagnosed correctly she's been much better. She has a prescription for it, but I don't remember the name of it.



"Occipital neuralgia is a distinct type of headache characterized by piercing, throbbing, or electric-shock-like chronic pain in the upper neck, back of the head, and behind the ears, usually on one side of the head. Typically, the pain of occipital neuralgia begins in the neck and then spreads upwards. Some individuals will also experience pain in the scalp, forehead, and behind the eyes. Their scalp may also be tender to the touch, and their eyes especially sensitive to light. The location of pain is related to the areas supplied by the greater and lesser occipital nerves, which run from the area where the spinal column meets the neck, up to the scalp at the back of the head. The pain is caused by irritation or injury to the nerves, which can be the result of trauma to the back of the head, pinching of the nerves by overly tight neck muscles, compression of the nerve as it leaves the spine due to osteoarthritis, or tumors or other types of lesions in the neck. Localized inflammation or infection, gout, diabetes, blood vessel inflammation (vasculitis), and frequent lengthy periods of keeping the head in a downward and forward position are also associated with occipital neuralgia. In many cases, however, no cause can be found. A positive response (relief from pain) after an anesthetic nerve block will confirm the diagnosis.





Is there any treatment?





Treatment is generally symptomatic and includes massage and rest. In some cases, antidepressants may be used when the pain is particularly severe. Other treatments may include local nerve blocks and injections of steroids directly into the affected area.





What is the prognosis?





Occipital neuralgia is not a life-threatening condition. Many individuals will improve with therapy involving heat, rest, anti-inflammatory mediations, and muscle relaxants. Recovery is usually complete after the bout of pain has ended and the nerve damage repaired or lessened."
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#22 Old 02-17-2008, 12:40 PM
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Ooh, Karen, I'm going to Google that. That sounds a lot like the headaches I was getting last year. They've eased up now, probably because I'm not living under a bunk bed anymore (My desk and a cabinet were under my lofted bed, and I had to keep my head down whenever I stood up).
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#23 Old 02-17-2008, 12:43 PM
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Thanks Karen. While it doesn't sound like all my headaches, it does sound like some of them! I'll look into it.

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#24 Old 02-17-2008, 01:38 PM
 
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nogardsram, have you been able to identify any of the triggers? I used to have migraines often (one of my sisters and my dad have them as well), but changing a few things dietary/environment wise have helped immensely. I've had I just 3 in the past two years. When I ditched liquid milk (for sinus reasons), the migraines lessened as well. Cutting out all dairy later made it even better. Getting enough/not too much sleep makes a big difference as well. For me, and someone else at VB (can't remember who), lavender actually makes migraines worse, so that's just something to consider.



My best remedy now is to be pro-active. The drug thing isn't fun, of course, but sometimes is beneficial. Of the 3 I can recall in the UK, one was very mild, for this reason. I had a sort of triple whammy of triggers (poor sleep for a couple of days, lavender candles, and exposure to some dodgy strobe-like lighting). The next morning, I had my lovely warning aura (not sure if you have this), and was able to take some ibuprofen, coupled with a healthy dose of caffeine. I laid down in the dark for about an hour, and was then able to go on with the day with a slight ache, but nothing unmanageable. I take this combo after the pain starts, as well, but then it's not too effective. I've also done some experimenting with Valerian Root extract and found it to work fairly well if I can take it before the pain starts.



A few years ago, when one of my gal pals was learning Lamaze breathing techniques, we talked about it as a possible tool for managing migraine pain. We tried our own amateur techniques, and while it seemed to help the pain, I was not able (with admittedly only a few tries) to get it to a level that would allow me to function during the day.



So, I guess I don't have any real answers, but maybe some possibilities.

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#25 Old 02-17-2008, 01:39 PM
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Depending on the source of your headaches (tight muscles, muscle imbalance, etc.), yoga can help a lot. It helped me.

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#26 Old 02-17-2008, 01:56 PM
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Sorry for spamming this thread, but my mother was able to get her migraines down from daily (they were that frequent for several years following the birth of her second child) to several times a month by taking vitamins. Figuring out triggers or underlying health issues are very beneficial to prevention.
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#27 Old 02-17-2008, 01:59 PM
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I know some of the triggers. Not eating enough, eating too much sugar or sugar too often (like more than a cookie or two or a piece of cake, etc), not drinking enough water, certain chemicals. Those account for a lot, but then I just get some that I'm not sure why.



When I first started getting the bad migraines, I started eliminating things from my diet (this was around the 10-13 years ago time). Caffeine, milk, nuts, etc. I tried all sorts of things like that, trying to determine what might trigger it. Not much luck. (Eliminating things from my diet because of headaches was also a part of the reason why I initially when vegan).



I also got some of the worst migraines after playing soccer or racket-ball. It got to the point I had one after every time I played. So I stopped. It wasn't for lack of water either, since I started drinking more and more (I also tried a variety of 'sports drinks' at the request of people I was with).



I've tried Valerian root in tea form (not real sure if it helps, but I'll try it again and maybe in other forms). I also tried feverfew (I thought it worked at first, but I started having other problems so that wasn't good. Also while taking the feverfew, my headache frequency reduced, but the severity increased, it was like a conservation of pain and I didn't like it) and a few other things I can't remember from our health food store.



I try doing yoga and the like. I can get into a routine for some time, but then I get hurried and I stop once (you know the "I'll skip it just this once" kind of thing). Then I'll still feel fine, so I'll skip it again and still feel fine. Next thing I know, I'm trying to figure out how to start again. I've been thinking about going to a yoga class, so that I'm paying for it and that usually is enough for me to consistently go.

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#28 Old 02-17-2008, 02:49 PM
 
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Ooh yeah, feverfew. I had a really gnarly time with that. Felt like someone was attempting to pull my eye out of the socket with some sort of suction device. ((shudder)).



The thing about sports is interesting to me. I wonder if it has something to do with dilation/contraction of the blood vessels.



I'm sorry you're suffering. Headaches bite.

The ones I pity are the ones who never stick out their neck for something they believe, never know the taste of moral struggle, and never have the thrill of victory. - Jonathan Kozol
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#29 Old 02-17-2008, 02:56 PM
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A build-up in the colon causes so many problems, so I've heard people who have had a colonic done, enema's done regularly, or a colon cleanse. They feel much better. This includes headaches as well.
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#30 Old 02-17-2008, 03:04 PM
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The thing about sports is interesting to me. I wonder if it has something to do with dilation/contraction of the blood vessels.



Yeah, I don't know. I'm pretty active in other ways, and I ride my bike a lot (not lately due to snow), but I generally don't get headaches from it. I have before on some really hot bike rides though.

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