My Migraine Relief

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The Emotional Toll of Migraines

Migraines impact the functioning of many people daily. Around 37 million people in the U.S suffer from migraines and I am one of those millions. I have wanted to write about the emotional toll of migraines for some time. However, I was concerned about writing it without sounding whiney. The last thing our world needs is more whiney. I also couldn't figure out how to write about the emotional toll of migraines without sounding like I wanted a pity party. I am not opposed to you bringing me gifts, but I am not trying to host a party. Instead, I want to share information and educate about migraines. I want to know that I am not alone. I want you, dear migraine sufferer, to know that you are not alone. And most of all, I wish that if enough of us speak up, that there will be more funding, more research, and hopefully more cures. Maybe someday I will write an in-depth piece about migraines. But for now, I am going to tell you what makes my migraines feel better.

Image Credit: This photograph is my personal photograph ©Dawn Rae - All Rights Reserved.

Give a Shout Out if You Suffer from Migraines

Do you get migraines?

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“Identifying Information: Dawn is a 49 year old, Caucasian female. She is a professional, employed, slightly overweight, but otherwise healthy (no known health problems) adult who has been suffering from migraines since the mid-1980s. She cannot recall migraines prior to that time. Dawn gave birth to her only two children in 1983 and 1985. Those pregnancies and childbirths were fairly unremarkable. Approximately two to three years later, she began experiencing severe, chronic migraines.”

Dawn Rae

“Current Complaint: Daily baseline headache. Re-occuring severe migraines at a frequency of no less than one per month. Often times 1-2 per week, with more mild migraines or auras interspersed.

Patient Statement: "I just want menopause to happen already so my migraines stop."”

Dawn Rae

Things that seem to make me feel better.

This video makes my migraines feel better.

I guess the combination of the belly-laughs and the knowledge that someone else has "been there, done that" just makes me happy. Thank you Jennette Fulda! I LOVE this video!!
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Something Else That Made Me Feel Better

Knowing that I am not alone helps.

This book made me feel better. Jennette Fulda was the first person I knew of who talked openly about migraines. I read her book "Chocolate & Vicodin" and felt as though someone understood me for the first time ever. I remember the relief of knowing that someone else is going through something similar (not that I'd wish migraines on even my worst enemy. Seriously. Not even my worse enemy. I'd maybe wish they'd be hit by a truck, but not suffer from Migraines.).

My Triggers:

Listed in no certain order.

Triggers are the things that are thought to typically start a migraine. My triggers are NOT the ones listed in all of the literature. I do not seem to have problems with cheese, wine, or Chinese food. Caffeine seems to help me as opposed to trigger (except when a sick migraine has already started)
  • Having a uterus, ovaries, and menstrual cycle.
  • Some perfumes or heavily scented deodorant sprays.
  • Some potpourris, candles, and room sprays.
  • Some Chemicals (esp. oven cleaner, gun cleaner, floor strippers, some oil-based paints)
  • Eating garlic on the first day of my menstrual cycle (I love garlic otherwise)
  • Being too sedentary (when my job keeps me at my desk day after day, I have more problems)
  • Weather (I haven't figured out which barometric changes, but clearly there are some)
  • Rebound migraines (following a day that I had to take 2 imitrex, or many ibuprofin)
  • Cigarette smoke exposure
  • Constipation
  • Dry air in a home (due to forced heat, too much air conditioning). (notable: during visits to Arizona, I did not have migraines)
  • Exposure to flashing light, certain movements in movie scenes, and other things similar to motion sickness.

Interesting Tidbit:

I have a friend with a seizure disorder. When she is experiencing increased seizures I am experiencing increased migraines and/or auras. We were both triggered by weather and were often triggered at the same times.

Easing the Pain During the Migraine

Again, listed in no certain order.

The following things help ease a migraine enough to prevent me from running out into traffic.
  • Pinch the bridge of my nose, digging into the corners of my eye sockets, and hope my head pops off.
  • Get out of the moving vehicle as quickly as possible and hold very, very still.
  • Turn off all the lights, close all the light blocking blinds, and threaten anyone who turns on a light.
  • Lay on the floor, propping my neck up just right with a wadded up pillow.
  • Take PRN medication: Ibuprofin or Imitrex. Depending on how severly the pain is setting in.
  • Throw up. I don't try to throw up. I hate throwing up. But once I do during a migraine, the pain starts to subside.
  • Hot bath or steaming shower
  • Neti pot
  • Sleep. Sleep for hours. Sleep for days.
  • Wash my face with peppermint soap or rub my temples with peppermint oil.
  • Deep, slow breathing and meditation. I meditate, imagining blowing the headache pain "cells" out of my body.

My Most Effective Preventative Behaviors:

It is virtually impossible to know that you've prevented something. If it doesn't happen, how do you know that it just didn't happen instead of having done something to prevent it. That's part of why medicine isn't such an exact science. But over the many years of nasty headaches, I notice that my headaches and migraines seem to be less when I am doing the following things. I feel as though many of the things mentioned in this list have something to do with keeping my bodily fluids/chemicals in balance. During a migraine, and when it first starts to release me, I can taste a change in my mouth/mucus. There is a "chemical" or a "metallic" change in taste that happens and helps me know where my migraine is in it's stage.
  • Yoga and other stretching
  • Aerobic activities daily. Exercising for long enough to start to sweat.
  • Active sex life
  • Outdoor activities
  • Massage
  • Eating right (avoiding triggers, increasing healthy foods)
  • Avoiding constipation by eating high fiber foods, green smoothies, etc.
  • Drinking large amounts of water daily.
  • Attempting to focus my mind on things I enjoy, goals, etc.
  • Being gentle on myself. If I miss that event or activity, it's okay.

Why Did I Mention Menopause?

After many years, many doctors, pills, treatments, and thousands of recommendations from friends, I finally found a neurologist who was helpful. We tried a medication that is usually helpful for seizures, in combination with a medication for blood pressure (now I do have a slight blood pressure problem). That combination helped quite a bit. However, no matter what, I have a raging migraine on the first day of my period. The neurologist said that many times, female migraine sufferers who have menstrual triggered migraines, end their migraines with menopause. Oh Thank God.

The thing I didn't think about was that pre-menopause means false starts of cycles, weird timing of cycles, and etc. So currently, I appear to be pre-menopausal and my migraines are a mess. How long does pre-menopause last?!

The Dirt on My Medical Treatment:

Starting in the 80′s, I think I’ve been on every “blood pressure” medication to control migraines. I did not have high blood pressure and those medications did nothing for me, for many years. I’ve also been given anti-depressants off and on over the years. They did not seem helpful for my migraines either.

The best preventative treatment I’ve ever had (in addition to continuing to avoid my triggers, remain aerobically active, etc) has been the combination of daily Topamax and a blood pressure medication. Unfortunately, Topamax has pretty uncomfortable side effects. I experienced the severe tingling in my extremities, word loss (it seems like Aphasia, I know that I know the word but can’t get it out of my mouth correctly), sensitivity to heat (nearly had heat stroke on a hike in the summer and I’ve never experienced that before), foods tasted bad (but it didn’t create weight loss darn it!), and dry mouth/yucky feeling in my mouth. I am currently off of Topamax but am thinking about returning to it, despite the side effects.

Unfortunately, the vocabulary problem has continued, so that side effect is probably a combination of the Topamax and the migraines themselves.

Imitrex has been my most successful PRN (“take as needed”) for easing pain once it starts. However, I use it sparingly due the rebound headaches I mentioned earlier.

As the years have passed, I have developed mild high blood pressure. I am on a low dosage of blood pressure medicine. If i stop taking that medication and my lower number on my blood pressure goes up to mid-80′s to mid-90′s, I can guarantee an increase in headaches. My top number of my blood pressure always remains in the good range.

The Emotional Toll of Migraines on My Life:

I’ve stopped accepting invitations to events. I have always been a sort of commitment-phobe. However, my migraines have been so disruptive to my life that I hate when I'm invited to events. I hate to say yes, commit to bringing a dish, a game, have a friend ride along, etc, then have to back out because I'm having a sick migraine.

I miss work. I miss more days of work than other people. I feel as though, because I'm a strong person otherwise and force myself through daily life, and many times people can't see how bad I really hurt, I feel as though some people think I'm faking.

I’m angry. I'm furious with some of the people I've met in my life who have alcohol problems, hangovers, and call those hangovers migraines. My headaches are not hangovers. In fact, I enjoy alcoholic beverages less than most of my friends do because I am afraid of triggering a migraine. I’m angry at doctors who give weird responses during appointments. I’m mad that there isn’t a cure.

Stress?! I’ll give you stress! Please don't tell me that it's probably just my stress level. I've had migraines during 4-day long relaxing camping trips. I've had fewer migraines during parts of my children's deployments (and anyone who has had a loved one deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan knows there is not a stress-free moment until their return home). There has been no pattern between my stress level and my migraines. I can tell you for a fact, however, that you are negating my disease or disorder by saying it’s stress, and that stresses me.

Migraines scare me. During the sick migraines, I have wondered if I'm dying of a stroke, and I've wondered who will find my body. The weird pounding and hot throbbing in my neck and head is frightening. The visual problems are scary and dangerous.

Migraines are embarrassing. I'm embarrassed that I've pulled into convenience store parking lots to sleep off a sudden migraine or to dip behind a dumpster to throw up. I'm embarrassed that I've been in important meetings or in the middle of things at work and can't say the word I need. Or that I'm having sudden auras and have to tune out of what's going on for a few moments.

Helpful Items

I have not yet read the recommended books in my book list (except of course, for the Chocolate & Vicodin book). These items are items I do use to help my migraines. I depend on these things for relief.

Some Helpful Places on the Internet for More Information and Support

This list will continue to grow and change as I find helpful sites. Remember to check back occasionally to see what's new.

Over the years, I've found more helpful and supportive information from what I've read, and less from the doctor's appointments, pills, and medical community. I think it is very important to go to medical appointments to rule out other problems (tumors, etc) and to find out some of the hidden problems (i.e. high blood pressure). But overall, the most of my knowledge how to take care of myself came from others who have a similar problem. No migraine is the same, not even mine, but hearing from others helps.
Migraines for Dummies
A really nice, succinct, cheat sheet of information about Migraines.
That "M" word: A Migraine Blog
A migraine blog with a uplifting, positive approach.
My Chronic Migraine
Facts, Information, and personal stories.
Jennette Fulda's Blog
Jennette Fulda has a facebook, blog, pages about her two books.... I posted this link to the blog since it is probably the most central way to find her.

Updates and New Information

This section will remain under construction.

I have decided to update this lens with a section reserved for updates. Once upon a time, I spent much time researching migraines, their causes, and their cures. Now I only occasionally spend time researching. And occasionally I will find information or studies that are new or are new to me. I've decided to share that with you here.

This morning I have found a study that states the triggers of migraines are "variations in arterial anatomy". Where this information will lead, as far as treatment, who knows. But this study makes sense to me since I've had two young adult relatives who have had "brain artery problems" - as I call it as a non-medical person.

If interested, please check back on occasionally, to see if i've found something new.
RE: the research conducted by the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
This is an article about a study, by lead author, Brett Cucchiara , MD, Associate Professor of Neurology , finding that a large percentage of migraines are caused by "variations in arterial anatomy".

Special Thanks to a Doctor in My Past.

In the late 80s, when my migraines were just beginning and my general practitioner was beginning to treat me for them, I had an experience that in hindsight I am very thankful for. It was an evening or weekend, and I suddenly had the worst migraine I had experienced up until that time. Stabbing pain and sudden vomiting. Back then it was new to me. I went to one of those walk-in urgent care places. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not faulting them for this. But they gave me a narcotic prescription. And boy-howdy, it worked. I felt great. The pain was gone, the attitude was good, and I was ready to do my housework. Woohooo, life was good. I had my follow-up appointment with my physician. He refused to fill the prescription for the narcotic. At first, I was a little miffed. After all, did he want me to live in pain or what?

Now, as the years have passed, and I’ve worked in my profession of social work, I have seen the devastation that narcotic addictions wreak on lives. I completely think there is a time and place to use narcotic pain medication. But I don’t think it is a good treatment for chronic migraine pain. With my daily pain and throwing narcotics on top of that, it is very likely I would have eventually had an addiction problem So … thank you Dr. X (whose name I can’t get out currently because of the vocabulary problem) for looking out for my best interest.

Update: I remember his name now. Thank you so much Dr. Waggy. I still appreciate your bedside manner, your ethical treatment of me, and your reluctance to start me on the path of narcotics. You treated me so many years ago. We didn’t find the answers, but you were very helpful. I wish there were more doctors in the world who take the time to try to figure things out.

Summary:

If you are a migraine victim, know that you aren't alone. There are people who understand. Join support groups, read the forums, tell your loved ones what you need. Read about migraines and be aware. Then get out there and live your life the best you can. Don't rip off someone's head when they give you their opinion of your diagnosis. As annoying (and sometimes hurtful) as it is, generally, they are trying to be helpful and don't know any better.

If you are a migraine victim, keep a daily record of your activities, what you've eaten and done, so that you can better identify YOUR triggers. Then you can avoid those triggers as much as possible.

If you love someone who has migraines, love them up. Don't try to tell them what is helpful. Instead, give love and support with things like the housework, errands, etc. During my migraines, I want to mostly be left alone. But I like for someone to check on my regularly, just peeking in to make sure I'm still alive and asking if I need something. I will almost always say I don't need anything, but I'm glad to know you are there

Helpful or Whiney?

Did you read anything helpful or new?

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I would love to read your comments about migraines. Or, just stop by and say hi.

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  • AmyLOrr Apr 04, 2014 @ 7:49 am
    I suffer from migraines. Fatigue, perfume, and weather changes set me off. I hate taking any medication for them though, as I find it makes them worse. Thanks for the great lens. I may try the peppermint oil :)
  • MarleMac Jan 24, 2014 @ 10:08 am
    Hi! I cured my migraines! It's simply one of three types of imbalances or a combination. I'm a natural health practitioner and I sorted it naturally. I wrote about it here. From your description you have a bit of everything in combination. It's inspiring me to do a lens on it, so thank you! I'll pop in at your profile and let you know when it's done!
  • FreshStart7 Jan 02, 2014 @ 3:22 pm
    I do not suffer from migraines but I have a friend who expalins the same sort of torturous feelings when she suffers with hers. So you all have my sympathy and I think that this lens offers 'some' comfort to migraine sufferers that they are not alone. Funny video :)
  • TanoCalvenoa Jan 01, 2014 @ 6:06 pm
    What a thorough page about one of the worst things a person can suffer with. I once had them nearly every day, but now they're very rare for me. I had to make major changes to get rid of them, but it worked. Mostly I changed nutrition, exercise, and other health habits. I started drinking only water and nothing with calories. I eliminated sugar, gluten, and a few other things from my diet.
  • traveldestinations Dec 30, 2013 @ 2:47 pm
    Good information about yourself and migraines. I have had them since my twenty. Not fun!
  • chrisilouhoo Dec 18, 2013 @ 6:21 pm
    This was great, I'm going to bookmark it for reference.
    I like that 'having a uterus' is on your list of triggers!
  • kimadagem Dec 15, 2013 @ 12:23 am
    I used to get really bad headaches; they would last for 2 or 3 days and I called them "sick headaches" because they would make me nauseous. I couldn't afford to see a doctor about them (no insurance) so they were never diagnosed as migraines, but they sure were bad. Then I discovered by accident that they were related to sugar - specifically refined carbs (white sugar & flour, etc.) - and when I cut way back on those the headaches became much less frequent and not nearly as bad. Now I get them only when my "sweet tooth" gets out of control, and they show up a couple of days after I've run out of whatever the sweet stuff was so they're obviously some kind of withdrawal. I really believe that if I could stay away from sweets altogether I could get rid of these headaches. I'm working on it. :)

    Of course I don't know for sure that my headaches were - or are - migraines. But for anyone who gets really bad ones I agree with your suggestion about keeping a journal, with dates and times, of what you eat and how you feel, just to see if you can link the two. If there's no connection then there's something else going on. But if there is, I would suggest checking out the work of Dr. Kathleen DesMaisons on sugar sensitivity. The journal is the second step in her plan of recovery for people who are sugar-sensitive - which I definitely am (as is the rest of my immediate, and a lot of my extended, family) - and is described in several of her books (the best one to start with is "Potatoes Not Prozac").

    I'm glad you wrote this lens. This is a subject that needs to be talked about as much as possible.
  • nancycarol Dec 14, 2013 @ 11:43 pm
    I don't think this was whiney at all. As a matter of fact, I was surprised to find your sense of humor in this lens about such a miserable subject (migraines.) You did a wonderful job, kept me interested to the end, and now I'm forwarding the link to my daughter who possibly has migraines. Thanks for sharing.
  • Snakesmum Dec 14, 2013 @ 10:16 pm
    I have had migraines intermittently since puberty, although between about 20 and 40, when I had a hysterectomy, they stopped completely. Since then, they can happen about twice a month, or miss for months at a time. Am convinced they are hormonal. When I get the first symptom, I take Immigram and lie down and sleep for a couple of hours. Without these pills, there would be pain, vomiting, light sensitivity, etc., so I'm grateful they exist. I thought at my age menopause would be over, but the migraines go on........
  • CrazyHomemaker Dec 14, 2013 @ 9:18 pm
    Thanks for this info on migraines. They are the most debilitating thing I've ever had in my life. Mine were stress induced from a work problem years ago. I had the beginning of one the other day and I wish I would've read this. I'm going to get some peppermint oil to have on hand. Sleep is the best medicine.
  • boneworld Dec 14, 2013 @ 9:16 pm
    This is an amazing article. I've suffered from debilitating migraines my whole life, and as I've gotten older, they've gotten much worse. You mentioned something about a sedentary life-style that kind of jumped out at me. That's something I hadn't really thought of as a trigger, at all. I know a few triggers I avoid, but that's one that never even occurred to me.
    This was a great article. I agree with a lot of what you said, including a number of the stories you told. Great job!
  • GoldenAsh25 Dec 14, 2013 @ 6:29 pm
    Hello, Dawnraeb
    Its good to learn so much from a personal point of view. You mentioned that you use some kind of meditation techniques. I wanted to ask if you have used some self hypnosis meditation mp3s or music. My friend suffers from a really painful kind of migraine and I wanted to buy him a migraine remedy. I saw this
    "Heal Your Headache, Migraines be Gone: the Migraine Brain Wave Entrainment Self Hypnosis System" at Amazon with Really Good reviews. Do you have any experience with Hypnosis and Meditation?
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:39 pm
    I don't guess I do hypnosis. I either do relaxation/meditation in general... i used to have some cd's that i'd listen to that are guided imagery i guess (imagine yourself in your favorite place, now breathe, and relax your fingers, imagine yourself as an eagle, soaring, take a breath, relax your face muscles.... that type of mediation). But during a migraine, i often fall asleep while taking a deep breath in, imagining it swirling in my head and picking up the pain cells, and blowing them all out. the next breath in, i imagine it swirling around another part of my brain, picking up the pain cells, then blowing them out. Often while i do that, the pain subsides enough that I fall asleep. I've not tried the technique or read the book you are referring to. I might have to check it out.
  • Boudja Dec 14, 2013 @ 6:06 pm
    thanks
  • Dec 14, 2013 @ 5:10 pm
    Such a well written lens. I used to get terrible migranes at least weekly but the day I became pregnant my migranes stopped and I almost forgot about them until I stopped breast feeding so it makes sense to me that they can be related to the menstrual cycle. It's so interesting how different migranes are for each person suffering. Thank you for sharing your experience with us.
  • RubyHRose Dec 14, 2013 @ 4:14 pm
    Good to know. I will pass this on to others who suffer. Congrats on LOTD
  • rattie Dec 14, 2013 @ 4:00 pm
    My poor mother suffered the most horrible of migraines. They disabled her just as yours do. She would spend three to four days in bed and vomiting was her ultimate and only relief.
    Today I have a friend who excludes all grains from her diet (as I do ), and one of the side effects has been total relief from migraines.
    This is also the diet that helped my daughter cure her autoimmune disease. It may be worth a try for you...
  • 23wekenzwanger Dec 14, 2013 @ 3:32 pm
    I only have migraines very rarely (thank goodness!) butt when i have it The throbbing pain would get worse on moving, in bright light and when background noise was present. I hated having people around me when I had one, which almost once a week. Hot and cloudy weather, too little sleep etc take a look
  • d-artist Dec 14, 2013 @ 3:13 pm
    Congratulations on LOTD! My husband used to get bad, bad migraine headaches and when he retired the headaches went way...so stress for him was the trigger. One of hubbies sisters had a real bad migraine and went to the hospital and died.
    I get them occasionally from weather, but are manageable.
  • philipcaddick Dec 14, 2013 @ 2:33 pm
    Hi.
    I used to suffer from frequent migraines from about 16 years old until I was about 50. Sometimes I had 3 or 4 headaches a week. I used to have to work as an accountant with the most powerful painkillers I could stand. Sometimes I had to go home and sleep in the dark.

    At around 50 I started taking pills to reduce blood pressure, after about two years I realised that I had not had a migraine for a year or more. I now have no more than three a year, and they are not very bad. Almost never you day to the next.

    If you suffer, control your blood pressure, it may help.
  • seenamary Dec 14, 2013 @ 1:43 pm
    I started having migraines from fifth grade. The throbbing pain would get worse on moving, in bright light and when background noise was present. I hated having people around me when I had one, which almost once a week. Hot and cloudy weather, too little sleep, too much sleep, monotonous lectures and over-exertion were sure triggers. There were times when I got one more than twice a week. However, after I became diabetic, and started on metformin for insulin resistance, the incidence has become very rare, touch wood. With all the negative implications of diabetes, it seems like a blessing in disguise!
    Hope you will get relief soon from some unexpected quarter (not through diabetes, of course), for there are very few things worse than migraine.
  • CorrinnaJohnson Dec 14, 2013 @ 12:54 pm
    Thankfully, I only get one or two a year. My triggers are perfume, household cleaners and other smelly scents. I do get the auras a couple times a month, but they almost always go away without the headache pain. I hope you find relief from your migraines! I can't imagine suffering from them on regular occasion. Congrats on LOTD!
  • CorrinnaJohnson Dec 14, 2013 @ 12:54 pm
    Thankfully, I only get one or two a year. My triggers are perfume, household cleaners and other smelly scents. I do get the auras a couple times a month, but they almost always go away without the headache pain. I hope you find relief from your migraines! I can't imagine suffering from them on regular occasion. Congrats on LOTD!
  • kajohu Dec 14, 2013 @ 12:28 pm
    I didn't have migraines or even many headaches until I moved to Michigan in my early 20s. Mine never got as bad as yours have, luckily, but it was difficult to get much done on my headache days. Weather changes and barometric pressure changes are big triggers for me. Food usually doesn't seem to trigger migraines in me, although for awhile spicy food did. Going through menopause HAS helped! I have far fewer migraines now, although for the first time I had a "visual" migraine during a very stressful time about a month ago, and the side of my face got numb for awhile. I thought I was having a stroke, but it was the visual aura that some people talk about with migraines.

    This is great info that you have here! Congratulations on LOTD!
  • nancymaggielee Dec 14, 2013 @ 12:06 pm
    My husband USED TO get debilitating migraines until we figured out what was triggering them for him were nitrates in food. One of the last times he got a migraine we started keeping a food journal and it was then that we realized every time he ate bacon he got a migraine. I really believe that the slow build up of chemicals in our food can cause our bodies to react adversely at any point in time and found out the hard way that I am adversely affected by MSG, which is in many of the foods we buy at the grocery store unknowingly. I have written a lens about it entitled "The Dangers of MSG and Aspartame" for anyone who wants to enlighten themselves on these two toxic chemicals in our food supply. Thank you so much for helping people by sharing your journey with this awesome lens.
  • StephenJParkin Dec 14, 2013 @ 11:21 am
    The problem is often too much sugar leading to Candida build ups. Could also be Salt excesses. I have had them and now not so much. It often starts with excessive use of antibiotics and oral steroids too. Just a couple of things to avoid if you can. WQell done on LOTD
  • jen17 Dec 14, 2013 @ 11:18 am
    I only have migraines very rarely (thank goodness!) but really feel for those that have them on a regular basis. This is a great lens and you shared some very helpful tips, thank you!
  • JeffGilbert Dec 14, 2013 @ 10:10 am
    Here's an alternative to curing migraines. I have used this technique for things other than migraines. However, 1000s have gotten relief and cured themselves of migraines using this. It's called EFT, and it stands for Emotional Freedom Technique. Do a search for "using eft for migraines" and you'll get hundreds of returns. Now, you can use EFT for more than just migraines. People have used this for a myriad of symptoms. It just turns out that it works for migraines as well.

    Now there may be some among that may have tried EFT and said oh, it didn't work. It just means you have to dig deeper. Your migraines are just a sign of something else wrong. However, that doesn't mean it's lethal or life threatening. It just means you have to deal with that and then deal with the migraine. A good book on EFT by a professional therapist is Roberta Temes "The Tapping Cure". She has shown people with migraines how to end them and shows a host of other things you can use this.

    If you do a search for "the eft manual" you'll get a link to "EFT Manual - Veterans Information". This is the original manual by Gary Craig, the inventor of EFT. It was distributed freely. However, Gary Craig has since retired and he's no longer keeping his website up. The manual is a little dated, EFT has evolved more since then. But it's fore free and it will give you an introduction from the inventor himself.

    The original creator of using tapping to cure ailments was Roger Callahan. He called his system TFT. Gary Craig tweaked TFT and created EFT, which is a lot simpler.

    In any event, people suffering from migraines should definitely explore EFT as an alternative cure, since its simple to do, it's free, it's natural, and once you learn it, you can use for a whole host of problems you may have. Whether it's backaches, PTSD, allergies, phobias, EFT has cured these symptoms. Notice I used the word cured, not relief.

    I have nothing to gain by promoting EFT, as you can see I'm not selling anything. EFT has become a regular part of my life now and i can tell you that there's very little that this doesn't work on. I am VERY healthy because I've been using this for years on everything. I was just surprised that after 26 replies, not one mentioned EFT. So, I'm saying please try EFT, it's free and many have gotten healed from these migraines. Just do a search for "curing migraines with EFT", "using EFT for migraines" and you'll see videos, posts, articles, come up in your search, many from migraine sufferers.

    I hope this post helps somebody. :-)
  • Wednesday_Elf Dec 14, 2013 @ 9:34 am
    I don't have migraines, but my mother did most of my growing-up years and my daughter has since college, as well as her hubby. DD's are often triggered by flashing lights - or sometimes just by someone turning on a light suddenly in a dark room. Her hubby's are often weather-triggered. So I know and understand some of what you are going through. Thank you for sharing your story so those of us who don't understand... will begin to understand or at least offer patience and support. This page is definitely deserving of the LOTD recognition.
  • Ramonailona Dec 14, 2013 @ 9:14 am
    Migraines are horrific! I do wonder if the Uterus might play a part in triggering Migraines. Get rid of that and Migraines just might disappear.
  • GabrielaFargasch Dec 14, 2013 @ 8:51 am
    I have also been a migraine sufferer most of my life!
    What helps me is coffee, massaging my head and breathing fresh air...
    Once I landed in the hospital because I went blind for almost two hours from the migraine attack!
    It was the most terrifying experience ever!
    What a wonderful helpful page! :)
  • PaigSr Dec 14, 2013 @ 8:08 am
    My wife and son get migraines. Its interesting that sometimes the chiropractor can get them to go away when my son goes to visit him. Its not the back but the neck that he works on.
  • susan-zutautas Dec 14, 2013 @ 8:03 am
    I can remember my very first migraine as if it were yesterday, and it happened when I was 19. I can recall the pain from it where as I can't recall the pain from childbirth. I hope that menopause brings you the relief you so need.
    Congrats on your lens as being chosen for LOTD!
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:27 pm
    Thank you susan! xoxox
  • sousababy Dec 14, 2013 @ 7:57 am
    I use a cold pack that wraps around my head. I get the one-side of my head type of migraines (usually my left side) that get severe with light and are accompanied by nausea. And, I just have to stay in a cold dark room and try to rest. I must prop my head up in bed, though, since lying flat makes my migraine worse.

    Three things that seem to help me: drinking lots of water, taking Tylenol #1's (at the first sign of my migraine, even just the aura), and drinking some coffee (which boosts the tyenol somewhat).

    I can't take ibuprofen anymore, since it causes me stomach problems (but the anti-inflammatory property of it used to help me quite a bit).

    I really identify with the commitment-phobe part of what you are saying, since I get them at the most inconvenient times (it seems).

    The pressure points you mention are ones I learned about too - bridge of the nose, especially. Recently, I found massaging the outside cartilage of my ears also helps.

    Great lens, thank you for sharing and congrats on LotD!
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:27 pm
    Thanks for the visit and comments. I need a cold room too, but otherwise, cold irritates mine. Ice packs on my head make me cringe. the day that I have to stop using ibuprofen will be a really rough day for me.
  • jmom Dec 14, 2013 @ 7:33 am
    I started having migraines at a very young age. Horrible! is the word to described it. Also my mother-in-law suffers from a severe case of migraine since she gave birth to my sister-in-law 32 years ago. Since then she has them every single day. She has to inject herself a narcotic to control the pain. It's really terrible. Thanks for sharing this great info, it will definitely come in handy.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:25 pm
    so sorry for your mother-in-law. That's terrible to have severe migraines daily! Hope she finds some relief.
  • cekgurizal Dec 14, 2013 @ 7:22 am
    If I tired or sleppy, sometime migraine destroy my head too..
  • RenaissanceWoman2010 Dec 14, 2013 @ 6:53 am
    Congrats on Lens of the Day! This is huge, my friend. I'm doing a happy dance for you. Woot!
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:24 pm
    woot woot! :)
  • ErinMellor Dec 14, 2013 @ 6:28 am
    I'm fortunate in that the only migraines I get are visual ones. Several family members get the real deal and they're awful. One of them also cites strong perfumes as a trigger, so I guess it's not completely unusual even if it's not in the literature.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:24 pm
    I have days that I only have visual problems/auras. And I know that scents trigger me. Especially aerosol perfumes or chemicals.
  • magpie_feathers Dec 14, 2013 @ 1:33 am
    I understand your problem as I get terrible attacks every month too. It's really bad!!
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:23 pm
    I hope you find relief soon. Thank you for visiting and commenting.
  • Graceonline Dec 13, 2013 @ 12:00 am
    No one, if they haven't had one, can possibly understand the pain and deep suffering caused by a migraine.

    With the exception of the transition period of labor just before childbirth, nothing I have experienced is as painful as a migraine. Totally. Absolutely. Debilitating. I am so grateful that I no longer get them. (I'm very tempted to knock wood, just saying that.)

    May you soon find relief. May the frequency of your migraines diminish steadily, and in a year or two, may you wake up one morning and realize that you haven't had one since you can't remember when. That is my prayer for you.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:22 pm
    Thank you for that prayer. I'm hoping so too.
  • marsha32 Dec 12, 2013 @ 5:47 pm
    I had my first migraine while taking birth control pills...they took me off them right away.
    I only have them on occasion now and I feel bad for those who suffer them on a regular basis.
    I get the colored flashing lights in front of my right eye before the onset and as long as I take an Excedrin Migraine or such right away I can head off the worst of it.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:21 pm
    I'm glad excedrin works for you to stop most of it. Thanks for taking time to visit and comment! :)
  • Ruthi Dec 12, 2013 @ 3:53 pm
    I do not envy you this migraine pain and hope you find something to alleviate it. I suffered migraines during my marriage but thankfully I rarely have them anymore. The throbbing with every move I made and yet even when I stood still was the worst for me.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:21 pm
    I'm glad yours are rare now! woohoo! good news.
  • Brite-Ideas Dec 12, 2013 @ 1:41 pm
    someone in my family gets these and I feel sooo bad for her !
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:20 pm
    I'm sorry for your family member. But thank you for stopping to read and comment.
  • Sylvestermouse Dec 12, 2013 @ 10:27 am
    I have suffered with migraines my entire life. Apparently, they are also genetic. Neither of my parents have ever had a migraine, but I have 2 brothers who get them and my son also suffers with them. They can certainly be debilitating. My family knows I have a migraine when I stick my head in the freezer. People have actually laughed at me, but I don't care. It is the only way for me to get instant relief while I wait on the prescription medicine to take the edge off so I can think straight and function.
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:20 pm
    Sorry you have them too. It seems I have passed mine on to my sons (but a less severe variety). Ugh. I'm glad you found that the freezer helps. Any little bit that helps!
  • RenaissanceWoman2010 Dec 12, 2013 @ 10:16 am
    Congrats on that gorgeous new Purple Star! I am thrilled for you. :-)
  • RenaissanceWoman2010 Dec 12, 2013 @ 7:50 am
    You asked about the duration of perimenopause. On average, it lasts 3-5 years before the onset of menopause. However, it can range from 2-8 yrs. ahead of The Pause. I read one article that even mentioned 10 years. Hoping you get complete relief then (if not sooner). This was really an exceptional insider's view of migraines. I found it very interesting and helpful. I wouldn't wish a migraine on anyone.
  • dawnraeb Dec 11, 2013 @ 6:36 pm
    Thank you so much for your supportive comments. I'm almost sure that my migraines will end (or almost end) after menopause..i'm just gong to have a tough time being patient for so many years. Oh for petesake! Thank you for your comments. And thank you, thank you for sending it all over the web!! :) It's appreciated.
  • adventuretravelshop Dec 11, 2013 @ 6:30 pm
    Menopause can last for 5 to 10 years! But it gets better as time passes. The pre-menopausal stage is the worse part. After that life gets better and better. My migraines have almost completely vanished now and I was almost as bad as you at the start of each month. I am sad to read that you feel embarrassed and i wish I could help you with that. There is light at the end of the tunnel. I promise you xx
  • dawnraeb Dec 15, 2013 @ 6:15 pm
    Thank you. I hope the "pre" stage is the worst, because this is really uncool. Thank you for the kind words. I know there's light at the end of the tunnel...i just wish for a shorter tunnel! :)
  • adventuretravelshop Dec 07, 2013 @ 5:34 pm
    So much information. I'll come to this and read it properly later. Meanwhile I'll send it all over the web!
  • candace-peters-crew Nov 28, 2013 @ 5:41 pm
    What an interesting, informative lens. I don't suffer from migraines myself but have family and friends that do and this helps me to understand them and hopefully be more supportive. Thanks!
  • dawnraeb Nov 28, 2013 @ 6:56 pm
    :) You are a very supportive person. Thank you for visiting and your support.
  • TapIn2U Nov 23, 2013 @ 3:19 am
    I've been experiencing migraines too but only occasionally. Sundae ;-)
  • dawnraeb Nov 28, 2013 @ 6:54 pm
    Glad yours are only occasionally. Hope they will soon be not-at-all. Thank you for visiting.
  • smine27 Nov 22, 2013 @ 11:58 pm
    I used to suffer from migranes for awhile but only rarely these days. I use a lot of the things you use like Dr Bronner's and other organic soaps with natural fragrances. I also use aromatherapy and practice yoga and breathing. I also take long walks as well. I do hope you are feeling better today.
  • dawnraeb Nov 28, 2013 @ 6:54 pm
    Thank you for visiting, Smine! I'm glad your migraines are rare. I am feeling better today. Thank you for asking.
  • mel-kav Nov 20, 2013 @ 9:40 pm
    Excellent lens!!! My mom also suffered with horrible migraines until she reached menopause - hope you get there soon! LOL!
  • dawnraeb Nov 20, 2013 @ 9:43 pm
    Thank you. that means alot from coming from you. I hope it's soon too!
  • TheApril Nov 20, 2013 @ 9:04 am
    I used to have very severe migraines with aura. I've since cut out ALL alcohol and severely limited my sugar intake. I still get mild migraines, but I've only had one really severe one in the last ten years.
  • dawnraeb Nov 20, 2013 @ 7:03 pm
    Yay! I'm so glad you found relief. I have cut out all alcohol for periods of time. Doesn't make a bit of difference for me. I have wondered about sugar and have cut back significantly, but not as much as i would like. Thank you for stopping and commenting. I can't wait until i can say i've only had one severe one in 10 years. It helps to hear something hopeful.
  • olliedee Nov 19, 2013 @ 8:05 am
    I have been getting headaches now but only on the left side of my head. They are pretty severe at times. I have had a problem with my jaw on the left side like a popping and grinding sound. The ENT told me it was TMJ. The dentist said no. My family doctor said no. The neurologist said could be. So I am in limbo at the moment. I think its back to the ENT who told me the headaches are TMJ related and take it from there.
  • dawnraeb Nov 19, 2013 @ 9:25 pm
    I am sorry that you get headaches too. I sure hope they find out what the problem is. Good luck on your journey. Meanwhile... squidoo like crazy. :)
  • bgray90 Nov 17, 2013 @ 10:45 pm
    Hi, my wife suffers from migraines at least twice a week. Nobody seems to know what triggers them more less how to relieve them. Zomig has helped her though some of the really bad days and lately a chiropractor the adjusts her "atlas" (upper part of the neck) and that seems to help. Good lens.
  • dawnraeb Nov 18, 2013 @ 6:51 am
    I agree that no one knows how to relieve them. It's such an individual thing for a person to find what helps a little bit. Good luck to your wife. And thank you so much for the visit and comment.
  • Papier Nov 17, 2013 @ 9:26 pm
    Excellent review of migraines and my heart goes out to you. I suffered from ocular migraines (the kind without pain, but with severe light, motion, sound sensitivity) for years and years. It was disabling. They finally began coming every day so I quit going anywhere but to the grocery. Then due to a neuro condition the doctor changed my BP med and discontinued gabapentin. Presto! that was 15 months ago and all my symptoms disappeared and have been gone for that whole period. I wish for you some similar discovery.
  • dawnraeb Nov 18, 2013 @ 6:49 am
    Yay, for the presto!!! Such good news. Thank you Papier for the visit and the comment. I'm so glad yours have left. Mine will leave someday too.