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Have you ever had a migraine?

What remedies do you use to alleviate your migraine?  Any of these - https://www.aarp.org/health/conditions-treatments/info-2019/migraine.html

AARPTeri
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I've had migraines since I was eleven.  They started me right off with Fiorcet and told me to take it with a Coke for the added caffeine. I went through high school and college taking various drugs (painkillers, execedrin, muscle relaxers, low dose antidepressants, midrin), and nothing really worked. I'm talking about migraines that put me out for at least 3 days, flat on my back in a dark room.  When I went to nursing school, we weren't allowed to miss any days at all. The doctor put me on a cocktail of drugs--take this, and then take this, if this doesn't stop it, take this. I managed to get through, with the professors all knowing I was taking medication (sometimes opiates) to get through the day. My life continued that way until finally I found a doctor in my 30s who decided it wasn't all hormones (give me a second to roll my eyes) and started me on Topomax. It helped, but I still needed opiate pain medication and something for severe nausea.  Imitrex didn't work at all for me, but Maxalt does.  Only if I get to the migraine during the Ocular portion or Aura.

 

I used to have at least a migraine (as I defined it) at least twice a month. That meant several days in bed followed by a day just feeling wrung out and worthless.  I had gradually over the years had to increase my Topomax dose and finally, due to that and some other reasons, had to stop working.  I had three Occipital injections for Occipital Neuralgia given by my Neurologist that worked wonders!...for a while

 

I saw the Botox commercial and it says...if you have a headache that lasts for 4 or more hours... I was shocked.  That was my EVERYDAY!  I had been contemplating Botox injections. When I asked my Neuro about that his reply was "What did you think a migraine was?"  We had a long discussion...  And then we talked about a new drug that had just come on the market.

 

I started taking Aimovig the month after it became available on the market.  I have only had 3 migraines in 8 months (my kind of migraines), and I rarely even have a headache.  I've had to take Maxalt a few times, and it's usually related to barometric pressure changes, increased stress, or poor sleep.

 

I also am super sensitive to light, sound, smells...any kind of outside stimulation, really. I always get transition lenses on my glasses because I'd rather pay more for my lenses than have a migraine due to light exposure. I also keep the lights low in my home unless there is company.  There is never more than one "thing" running--if my husband is using his computer and I am watching TV, then he has to use his headset.  If a lot of people are over visiting then music has to be very quiet, etc.  I have a sleep mask to use if I need to lay down during the day.  An ice pack behind the neck is also very good.  I've also done acupuncture and had the ear peircing; and I do Reiki on myself.  It's up to you if you want to do woowoo stuff or not--but it helped me. 

 

  • Eliminate any food/beverage triggers
  • Find ways to decrease/eliminate light sensitivity
  • Find ways to decrease overstimulation by noise
  • Ice packs (back of neck, top of head, side of face)
  • Go to a Neurologist or Headache Specialist.  Discuss drug options, including herbals
  • Don't be afraid to explore ALL your options--there are studies that prove that Chiropractic Medicine, EFT, Meditation, Reiki, Acupuncture and other modalities do help people. If you are interested, give it a try. 
Super Contributor

I had cluster headaches.  I was literally afraid to go to bed at night.  They were like a severe headache with stabbling severity over and over.  I never experienced anything like them.  They eventually disappeared on their own.

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Periodic Contributor

In my 30s I started getting awful headaches. My DR called them Migrains, my Nuerologist called them tension headaches. They typically came in 2-3 sessions monthly. One headache would show up say on a Monday. I thought it was atrocious, but typically was gone by the end of the day. Then on Wednesday, another one showed up. MUCH worse than the first one. But again, usually gone by the end of the day. If not, they were do bad, I couldn't even sit and watch TV, or read a book. I'd typically go for a walk, and often at the end of the walk they were already improving. 

 

I tracked my headaches and gave them a 1-10 rating. That tracking document on my computer is full of 8s. My medicine was Hydrocodone. But I always thought there was a physcosomatic (no clue how to spell that) nature to it. After about 20 years of these headaches, I began to notice most were under 5. 

 

When I was 62 I began traveling full time. My degree was in Photography and I wanted to return to that. I realized after 4-5 years of travel, my headaches were GONE! When the one doctor called these 'tension' headaches, I didn't really get it. I never felt my life was very full of tension. The business I owned was easy to run, rarely spent 8 hours a day in it. But now that I'm traveling full time, and the headaches are gone, maybe the tension was there and I just couldn't recognize it. 

 

 

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Yes
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I've had migraines since high school and have taken a lot of different medications. If the headache is just starting, I take 2 Excedrin Migraine (usually generic) and sometimes that will be enough to take care of it. If I have an aura of flashing lights and dizziness before the pain begins, I know I'm going to need 2 doses of zolmitriptan (2 hours apart) plus the 2 Excedrin. I am also on Trokendi daily to prevent migraines. I recently switched from Topamax to Trokendi and am having fewer side effects with the Trokendi.

Conversationalist

I started to have them when I was 12.  They always happened during my period.  But, as I grew older, it became so unbearable but didn't want to take drugs.  I felt there had to be Homepathic medicine to clear it up.  

When, I researched on it, I found out that the majority of people that have headaches, is High-pressure..  Is it a low or high pressure storm moving into your area?  If it's a has more intensity then your headache will grow in more pain.   The least majority of people has low pressure and these are the Worst ones.

So,what can I use to get rid of the pain, even if the storm is headed my way?

So,  I decided to see if (Hylands) worked and yes, it worked for small headaches.  It's a homeopathic medicine, does Not harm the body, it's called Headache.  Then, for the major ones- Can't stand light, nausea,pounding,- it's best to use both of these at the same time-Migraine and Pulsatilla (20x)- when, you feel a headache coming on- do not ignore it, take it immediately!  It will not go away on its own.

The other thing is you may not see a storm but your body knows right away and because of the pressure of the Earth it affects more of us.  I like to know if storms are in my area so I go on acccuweather.com and track them myself to give me a heads up.  

Also, this can be hereditary- my Dad had huge migraines where he had to stay in a darkened room till It passed.  He also had sinus headaches as well. 

So, research find out and you can deal without deadly drugs, which harms the rest of your body.  If you want to buy Hylands go to Iherb.com, they have really good prices!

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Use to have constant headaches & migraines. Since we went fragrance free and do not use other chemically laden products like air fresheners and candles, the headaches have been gone.

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Contributor

I had migraines for years.  Due to a possible TIA (mini-stroke) about 10 years ago, my doctor suggested I take one 81 mg, children's aspirin every day.  I haven't had a migraine since!  I still get ocular "migraines", but I never get a headache from them.  

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Periodic Contributor

PS  I just replied, but forgot to include that my eyes went out of focus probably before the halo and upset stomach early warning signs.  So ocular was the very very first part of my symptons, I would notice that I would take my glasses off... and then realize why.  I found Niacin & Ginger Root supplements eliminated my Migraines!

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Periodic Contributor

I read the responder comments with great interest.  Like several of the other responders, I started at about 6 years of age with life-long migraines.  I will be 76 in a few days.  I agree that various types of headaches are reported falsely as migraines.  In the early years, I would retreat to a dark quiet room and sleep for 30 minutes or so when I first got the 'halo + upset stomach' warning.  If I did not stop and retreat in 5 or 10 minutes, the migraine would progress into simultaneous vomiting and diarrhea!  Not fun or pretty! AND no way to travel home!

 

In my early 40's my husband dragged me to his Dr [I grew up in my Mother's health food store and never used MD's or drugs].  The Dr craftily convinced me to try Cafergot [ergotamine and caffeine] to see if it helped and to eliminate tumors, etc.  He did me a big favor!  I found that 1/4 pill within the first 10-minute window would eliminate my migraine in 20 minutes. I would throw water up, so I use a coke to take my pill.  The bubbles helped settle my stomach enough to keep the pill down and the caffeine enhanced the drug. 

 

In my early 60's I was now getting 2 to 3 migraines per week.  As I aged, they were increasing!  I happened to go to a non-traditional heart Dr. who suggested I take Niacin.  At the same time, I decided to go on a cruise and asked around for an herbal preventative for sea sickness.  The consensus was Ginger Root powder in capsule form.  So, at about the same time I started both Niacin and Ginger Root supplements.  To my surprise, I had a wonderful side-affect to love.  I had NO MORE migraines! 

 

Over time, I have continued the Niacin and Ginger.  I find I have been getting maybe 1 migraine per year!  A magnificent improvement over 2 to 3 per week!  I still keep Cafergot in the fridge, in my suit case and some in my purse, but I really don't need it!  If you are having migraines, try Niacin and Ginger following the label directions!  Good luck on getting rid of both your drugs and your migraines!

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Contributor

My migraines start with a half hour of partial vision loss and wavy lines. Then there's very intense pain over my right eye and sometimes nausea. This can last for 24-36 hours. OTC meds aren't much help.

 

Here's what finally worked for me: the minute I realize I'm getting a migraine, I breathe in and out of a lunch-size paper bag (normal breaths, with the bag covering my nose and mouth) for about an hour in a quiet place. I've done this for the last half dozen migraines and it's stopped them EVERY SINGLE TIME. I think the key is to do it as soon as the migraine starts. I don't know if it would work on a person who woke up mid-migraine.

 

Hope it works for you!

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When didn’t  I have a migraine?  They started at the age of 8. By age 13, I moved from my grandmother’s house to my father’s. When I complained about a painful headache and nausea, my new step-mother  would give me half of an aspirin. Eventually, I bought a bottle that I kept under my mattress not that it ever relieved my symptoms. By mid twenties, the migraines were long lasting (5-day and 12-day) headaches and when I could no longer tolerate the pain, I would go to an Emergency Room for a shot of Demerol. Eventually, I saw a doctor about my headaches and was referred to a headache specialist. Who knew?

 

 After a thorough exam I was told, and I’ve never forgotten the exact words, “You should be dead!” “You are a walking stroke waiting to happen!” I flippantly replied that it was not on my agenda as a single mom of two active kiddos, working full time, and attending night school. The hazards of having a blood pressure of 245/160 was followed by BP medications and a prescription for migraines.

 

The headaches persisted for another 20 years. Medication nipped them in the bud, which is critical to managing migraines. Get it before it gets you. Unfortunately, I developed a severe reaction to Imitrex (a single shot you could give yourself). In my forties, I seemed to experience fewer headaches to the point where over the counter Excedrin for Migraines worked as long as I treated the migraine at the onset.

 

Nearing age 50, the painful headaches subsided for no apparent reason, but were replaced with ocular migraines.  Painful no. Debilitating yes.  It’s a silent migraine with an aura. You may see flashing or shimmering lights, zigzagging lines, even stars. For me, they cause blind spots in my field of vision.  Today, I am nearing age 73 and the visual disturbances continue to randomly occur.

So, what causes migraines? It’s anybody’s guess. Stress. Allergies. Light. Red wine. Aged cheese. Peanut butter. Perfume. Changes in weather or barometric  pressure. Genetics. Since my daughter and grandson also get migraines, research on my extended family history revealed that grandmothers on both sides of my family suffered from migraines as well as my mother who I wouldn’t meet until I was in my late forties.

 

Can migraines be cured? A lifetime of experience tells me that they certainly can be controlled in most cases with medication, herbals, therapy, etc.  In my case, blood pressure medications as well as antidepressants helped. When the migraines were at their peak, I had some success with Cymbalta and Venlafaxine.

 

Much less is known about ocular headaches. For me they might last for several hours and reoccur the following day. They could be linked to spasms in blood vessels in the retina, but to my knowledge there is no treatment for them. For example, I recall walking several blocks to the bank on a beautiful sunny day when I had to call for a ride home because an ocular migraine set in. I couldn’t see my feet, the curb at the end of the sidewalk or oncoming traffic.  

 

I strongly encourage anyone who experiences crippling headaches to see a doctor.  Your pain is real and you need not suffer. Today, there are so many remedies to treat the blinding severity and duration of catastrophic migraines so don’t hesitate to get help.

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Regular Contributor

I agree, over the counter medication will not help a true migraine.  They're different kinds of headaches, tension, cluster and migraine.

 

I began having migraines when I turned twenty.  They didn't have any medications to treat them like they do now.  I really suffered with them

 

Finally they came out with some medications but none of them worked except Midrin.  I don't know why doctors don't prescribe this more often.  I take it as soon as I experience the aura and it stops the migraine from progressing.  No headache.  It saved my quality of life.    It doesn't have any of those strange side effects the other medications have.  It's not real common so the pharmacist may have to order it for you.  I get it at Walmart. You have to try different medications to find out what works for you.  You need to see a neurologist or headache specialist.  Migraines are complex.  Don't give up until you find what works for you.  

 

Good luck.

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Newbie

I have had migraines since my late 20’s, more frequently when I was younger, I am now 60, and didn’t watch out for the triggers....late nights, red wine, smoked foods, etc...stress. I tried Imitrex and it was useless, my best home remedies are hot bath, with ice pack on head, cold water, and two of Walgreens Allergy and Headache pills, or now Relpax. I also use pressure on my temples, and in between my thumb and forefinger, a form of acupressure. Cold dark silent room. Also, an “icy headache” with crushed ice on the roof of the mouth for as long as possible helps reduce the blood vessel pressure in the migraine area, fight fire with fire!

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Newbie

I also have migranes.

When the barametic pressure changes I get them.

I am not sensitive to light or sound.

I do take a antidepressent drug called Venaflexaine.

It has helped me a lot .

I am getting fewer headaches a month.

I would consult with your doctor.

 

Glenda Lilling

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Newbie

I have had terrible migraines. Got the piercing in my ear and I use peppermint oil on my temples and forehead, back of neck. Sleep also helps . 

 

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Contributor

I wish AARP could have an article on Occular Migraine.  I loose my vision with a jagged bright line for about a half hour.  I normally take a couple of Advil to prevent a headach pain after the incident.  I am more likely to get them if I skip a meal or delay eating more so than normal.  Please ask an expert more info on how to prevent these and provide an article for all to learn from.

 

Thanks!

 

Periodic Contributor

Ocular Migraines.  Yes.  I am interested. 

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I  started having ocular migraines and they kept increasing. After my eye doctor told me there wasn't a problem with my eyes I decided to take a baby aspirin every day.  It worked the first day.  I haven't had another ocular migraine so far and it's been 8 months. 

 

You can find articles online explaining how aspirin helps prevent migraines. 

Periodic Contributor

You're the first person I've encountered who has had or even heard of ocular migraines.  I recently had my first, same symptoms as yours, and it was scary.  Since I have had numerous retina and cornea problems and several eye surgeries, I feared the worst and immediately called my retina specialist's office.  I was diagnosed by a nurse over the phone with an ocular migraine and told it was no big deal but told to come and see the doctor the next morning to be sure.  My doctor agreed they really aren't a big deal, although they certainly are frightening.  He said they don't know what triggers them and there is nothing you can do to prevent them, but not to worry as they have no long-term effects.  (Let's hope he is right.)  He said next time I get one, just sit down and relax, they usually last 20-30 minutes and then they are over.  He also said once you have one, you'll probably have more in the near future, but for most people they go away for good after a while.  I've had two since then, one during the day and one in the middle of the night.

 

I'm sorry to hear you have headache pain with yours.  I never have headache pain with mine.   But it seems that if you have seen a doctor and you know that you are having ocular migraines, things will be okay.  I wish you the best.

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Regular Contributor

I started having ocular migraines and they kept increasing. 

My eye doctor said it wasn't a problem with my eyes so I decided to take a baby aspirin everyday and now they are gone.  They were gone the first day I started taking the aspirin.  It's been eight months and not one ocular migraine.  

 

If you go online you can see some articles on how aspirin can help prevent migraines.

Periodic Contributor

The baby aspirin sounds like a good suggestion.  Fortunately, I've only had three OM's over a period of four months, so they do not seem to be increasing.  I'm glad you found something that worked for you.

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Newbie

Oh, I've had these ocular migraines several times.  The last time I was on the subway.  It was so horrible.  A Dr. once told me they often come after one relaxes after a period of stress.  (Once the stress is over.)  The last one I had was last winter; I had ate dinner very late, had a cheese snack (cheese can be a trigger), walked 20 minutes in extreme cold, and sat in a room with very bright lights.  I looked at a bright, backlit sign in the metro and that was it.  Worst visual aura of my life - lost half my vision for about 20 minutes.   For me, very bright lights are triggers but it's hard to pin down.   Also had a very stressful medical test a few hours prior.  (Yes, that didn't cause them but it sure didn't help!)  

 

Sorry you all deal with these.  There are some good pictures of visual migraine auras on line - so it's good to know one is not alone.  Yes, an article on these would be great.  Most out there seem to focus on the pain - I get lower level pain for days (or weeks) after one of these - but not the extreme pain most other sufferers have.  Luckily, I don't get these very often.

 

Be well!

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I also suffer from ocular migraines.  They are often associated with changes in the weather and/or barometric pressure.  Usually if I take a couple of Excedrin tablets or a Fiorinol capsule at onset, I can prevent it developing into a full migraine.

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Sorry! I hit the send button! My general physician finally found a medicine that works for me called Relpax. My neurologists never tried this medicine on me, and some didn't even know what it was and weren't interested in finding out. If they did, it would have saved me years of suffering. I also take Topamax to prevent migraines, but I would not recommend it because of the side effects...weight gain, slurred speach, foggy mind. Several people besides myself had these side effects so I'm just suggesting you be cautious if you choose to use Topamax. Hope this information was helpful.

Contributor

I also take Relpax.  I am 81 & have had miagraines since childhood.  Over all

the years I have been in many trials ,  took many different meds.  I also did acupuncture & (biofeedback , it is is quack therapy as far as I am concerned),  I did the Botox shots .  They helped some for a year, then stopped helping at all.  I now take Diazepam 10 mg at bedtime.  Which helps me not to wake up with miagraine. So good to read that Relpax (now generic Eletriptan HBR 40 mg.)

has helped you.

Periodic Contributor

I read the responder comments with great interest.  Like several of the other responders, I started at about 6 years of age with life-long migraines.  I will be 76 in a few days.  I agree that various types of headaches are reported falsely as migraines.  I first find myself taking my glasses off and then figuring out that my eyes are out-of-focus.  Ocular is my earliest warning followed by the 'halo + upset stomach' signals that a migraine is starting.  In the early years, I would retreat to a dark quiet room and sleep for 30 minutes.  If I did not stop and retreat within 5 or 10 minute threshold, the pounding migraine pain would progress into simultaneous vomiting and diarrhea!  Not fun or pretty! AND there’s no way to travel home, to the Dr. or anywhere!

In my early 40's my husband dragged me to his Dr [I grew up in my Mother's health food store and never used MD's or drugs].  The Dr craftily convinced me to try Cafergot [ergotamine and caffeine] to see if it helped and to eliminate tumors, etc.  He did me a big favor!  I found that 1/4 pill within the first 10-minute window would eliminate my migraine in 20 minutes. I would throw water up, so I use a coke to take my pill.  The bubbles helped settle my stomach enough to keep the pill down and the caffeine enhanced the drug. 

In my early 60's I was now getting 2 to 3 migraines per week.  As I aged, they were increasing!  I happened to go to a non-traditional heart Dr. who suggested I take Niacin.  At the same time, I decided to go on a cruise and asked around for an herbal preventative for sea sickness.  The consensus was Ginger Root powder in capsule form.  So, at about the same time I started both Niacin and Ginger Root supplements.  To my surprise, I had a wonderful side-affect to love.  I had NO MORE migraines! 

Over time, I have continued the Niacin and Ginger.  I find I have been getting maybe 1 migraine per year!  A magnificent improvement over 2 to 3 per week!  I still keep Cafergot in the fridge, in my suit case and some in my purse, but I really don't need it!  Good luck on getting rid of your migraines! 

Contributor

Had headaches since I was a kid. (I'm now past 70.) Really got bad when I was in college. I always carried aspirin with me, and most of the time it did the trick. When I was in my early 20's and was out with my wife, I had such a painful headache, the likes of which I never had. I went the next day to the doctor and was diagnosed with migrains. Was given fioricet. For many years, 1 capsul when it started relieved the pain within a half hour. When 1 capsul didn't work, my doctor advised me to take 2, the first time only, and then 1 every 4 - 6 hours. Years later when I was in my 50's, they got so bad, (on the basis of 1 - 10 pain, I had a 13), I went to a neurologist. He prescribed maxalt for the times that the pain was 8 or higher, even if I had already taken Tylonol or fioricet. 

Another way I relieve my headache pain is to have a large, strong cup of regular coffree. This helps many times, so much so, that I don't have to take any meds.

While in the midst of a migrain, lie down in a dark room or use sleep blinders to keep out the light and place something cold on the sight of the pain. 

Contributor

I have severe migraines several times a month, and finally, my doctor has found a medicine

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