Thursday, October 22, 2009

Migraines and Me

I received and e-mail message a few days ago from someone who followed my blog back when I had daily chronic migraine headaches. She hadn’t read in a few years, and when she stumbled across my blog again recently she noticed I no longer talked about my Migraines (can we get an Amen???). She asked what I had done to stop my migraines, or at least control them. When I was responding to her e-mail I realized there are probably a few others who might be wondering the same thing, and since most of my archives have been deleted (although I am considering bring them back) I should post here what worked for me and my migraines. So the following is the e-mail response I sent to the afore mentioned commenter:

I wouldn't say I'm cured of my migraine, but defiantly don't get them regularly or frequently anymore!! The first thing I did was switch my medication to a different daily preventative (which I can't even remember the name of anymore). Then I stopped taking birth control, and also started watching my diet. I cut out all caffeine (coke was a big one for me) and chocolate, processed cheese and other things that are clearly bad for you. Then I started going to a massage therapist weekly. This was a therapist that was trained in acupressure, and was very knowledgeable about headaches and how to treat them, so if you are going to try massage, make sure you shop around and get someone who knows what they are doing!
After about 6months my headaches were very rare, so I stopped taking the daily medication to see if I still needed it. Which, thank goodness, I didn't! Then I slowly started to spread out my massages, going once every two weeks, and then monthly, and now I only go when I need it (if my neck is particularly tense, or if I'm getting a few migraines or headaches in a row). It was at this time that I got pregnant, so the birth control was no longer an issue. After I was pregnant I went on a birth control where I only got my period once every 3 months, that way my body could get back into a normal routine and get used to the hormonal changes slowly. After my body was used to that, I switched to an IUD, so I have no artificial hormones and no meds right now!

I am so happy this worked for me, I am now at a point where I get a couple migraines every now and again, and they are usually well handled with my Maxalt or if it's a regular headache, I alternate between Advil and Tylenol so my body doesn't get used to one or the other.

This worked great for me, I really think my body needed to be detoxed, which is why the med change and then diet change helped me, my body had got into a rhythm of pain, and it needed something to break that cycle.

I'm at a point now where I still don't eat processed cheeses, but I can have coke and chocolate in moderation without getting a headache right away. I do still watch what I eat, try to eat organic and healthy and stay away from the crap.

I think for me it was very important to just start listening to my body, and learn my cues so I know what triggers a headache for me, and what I need to do to stop that cycle from happening.

Headaches and migraines are so very unique to each individual, so what worked for me might not work for you, but you can take bits and pieces of what worked for other people and create system that works for you.

*** I’d also like to take a quick second to thank everyone who has commented here lately. I since I’ve started posting here again, I sometimes wonder why I even bother, since I lost all my readers when I shut things down last summer. Getting comments really does motivate me to take better care of this space, and to keep writing, which is so therapeutic for me. So thank you! And to the troll comment left here recently, thank you as well! My first troll!! How proud I was to read that, because everyone knows you haven’t made it in blog land until you are trolled! ;)


Natalie said...

Ummmm... so sorry I haven't visited in such a long time. You are the only blog friend who is also a facebook friend so when I have time to check blogs I don't usually come here first. But I just wanted to say I LOVE your new heading. So beautiful! You are living the dream right now, enjoy it!

Mary B. said...

I started going to a massage therapist weekly. This was a therapist that was trained in acupressure, and was very knowledgeable about headaches and how to treat them, so if you are going to try massage.

Jackie said...

Thank you Mary, that is exactly the same type of massage therapist that I went to and had great results with!

Anonymous said...

Who's the writter of this blog anyways? What a slacker! It's like you've been moving, building and new house, raising a 2 year old, and living with your needy mother for the last 2 months! lol. Us "lurkers" on the internet want an update! It's been since Octomer woman! Just teasing... :)

Steph R said...

I wanted to show you this article that after reading this post really drummed home the de-tox aspect of your migraine treatments. I found my way here from a list of other migraine blogs.

Ldavis 74 said...

I recently learned how serious some chronic migraines could be watching some news pieces on show like CNN and The Journal with Joan Lunden. A friend of mine also found relief and eventually a cure from some natural remedies, it's possible, keep up the fight.