Saturday, 9 June 2012

Migraines and me.

As I sit here typing out this blog post... I'm in a lot of pain.
This is the third day of my most recent migraine spell. Three days of pain, paranoia and a pissed off mood.
I've struggled with migraines my whole life. I always remember having to go home early from school because I couldn't see or talk anymore. I remember doctor's appointments, my mum getting sick through worry and feeling like I was broken.
This all seems like a huge exaggeration to someone who has never had a migraine. I've heard people say "oh, it's just a bad headache... it'll go soon". All through high school the nurse would say this to me. 
I missed a lot of school, a lot of fun with my friends and I missed out on sleepovers too.
 1. I lose my sight in one side of both eyes. I see half of everything.
2. I get a line of colours moving through my eyes and it feels like I've switched on the TV on an empty channel.
3. I get a severe pain above my left eyebrow and a band of pain across the back of my head. It feels like a very tight headband.
4. I start to feel sick and my head gets very heavy.
5. I can't open my eyes because the light is too strong and everything that I lay my head on feels like a brick.
6. I go to the bathroom and sit on the floor for 20 minutes and debate whether or not to make myself sick.
7. I lose the feeling in my nose, tongue, lip and hand. It then turns to pins and needles and travels up my arm.
8. I can't get my thoughts to my mouth anymore. I have to think really hard and talk really slow to get one sentence out. I just give up talking.
8. I can see fully and talk normally but I still have a lot of pain.
9. The migraine has now passed and I am left with a very delicate head. Everytime I cough, sneeze, move or jump I get a pulsating pain through it.
10. I'm so tired now. I usually have a nap after this.

I get about one migraine a week... sometimes I don't get one for a month. This is amazing! The typical ones last about 30 minutes so I don't take any pain relief for these.

My worst migraines happen about four times a year.

My bad migraines have all of the same symptoms as above but the pain is so unbearable. I can hardly move my head and I tend to rock back and forth with my legs to my chest because it calms me down. I have had so many panic attacks with them. I throw up on purpose because it eases the pain of my migraines. I used to take paracetemol but they never even scratched the surface of the pain. It was too bad.
The terrible ones last about 3-5 hours
I sleep for a long ass time after these ones. The longest was 36 hours straight. My mum was worried so she woke me up and even then I struggled to keep my eyes open. It feels like a hangover for about two days after. My head is cloudy, I get confused easily and I'm sooo tired and lethargic.
 My worst one was last year. I had to sit in complete darkness. I was just rocking back and forth. My brain felt like it was 100x too big for my head. I was crippled with pain. I shook, couldn't speak...
I called the doctor and just cried which makes it worse. He had no solution so it was pointless.

It's mostly caused by stupidity. 
I know what triggers them and I could prevent about 30% of them. 
Chocolate, cheese and red wine are huge triggers. I hate red wine so it's not a problem but cheese and chocolate? Gah! I've cut them down to almost nothing and I do intend to just stop eating them.
I also have to avoid flashing lights and strong smells or really harsh perfumes.
Stress causes the other 20%, I think and then hormones is the worst for triggering them. I can't change that though.
The week before my period is h-e-l-l. I have about 1 a day for 7 days... sometimes I get 2 or 3 in a day. 
Not only do I get PMT/S but this too. Oh, the joy!

I know that I'll suffer with these for the rest of my life and I'm at a point now where I can cope with them enough to get on with my life. I stay at work with them now unless it's a bad one. I know the usual length of time it takes for them to go.

Taking paracetemol, aspirin, ibuprofen and any other drug could work for you but I choose not to take them. It got to a point a few years ago that they stopped working so the doctor stopped them because my body got so used to them.
I've been on and off drugs my whole life for this and I don't feel they do my body any good.
I have a very high pain tolerence anyway so I can cope with a lot now.
I don't take drugs for anything unless it's necessary. I read that electrolites help headaches and they're found in a lot of energy drinks so I just grab a Lucazade if I can. I don't think it works but it comforts me, lol.

This is a post of my personal experiences and it varies from person to person so don't think every migraine is the same.

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Katy x