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Migraine...what will help any ideas?(31 Posts)
I have been suffering with migraines for almost 2 decades now. It feels like it’s not getting better and everyday is a struggle.
Eating healthy helps a bit but i still get severe attacks on a regular basis and it’s really affecting the quality of my life. Plus i have this constant fear of nausea, visual disturbances and passing out in public.
I have been to the doctors and they all tell the same thing ... sounds like it’s migraine and there is no cure, just take pain reliever and learn to manage it. Been prescribed various medication including prophylactic medicine but everything is short term.
I have made lifestyle changes but does not seem to help a lot.
Will appreciate hearing any ideas of what worked for other people!
Cranial osteopathy might help.
When I can’t get rid of one I sometimes stand with my head under the shower.
Mine have improved since the menopause.
I cut out fizzy drinks, lots of water to ensure hydration. One coffee a day, no more. A few cups of tea though. If I wake in the night with even the slightest head pain I get up and take 2 aspirin. No cheese late at night and nothing with bright red colouring. Definitely no alcohol. If the aspirin don't keep things at bay and I wake up with a migraine I take 2 pink migraleave or 2 co codamol and a buccal tab and go back to bed -
Not always possible of course due to DC etc but in the main bed is the biggest reliever of symptoms/
I haven't rid myself of them but I definitely have less than I used to, although saying that I never really developed them until late 30's/early 40's so very fortunate in that it's been over a short time span
You've got to push for a referral to a neurologist/neuropathologist. You need specific medicine or a referral for pain management if it is too unmanageable
I tend to take painkillers as soon as I get the first symptoms otherwise I’m knocked out for days.
I’ve also found magnesium oil helps a lot I spray it on my temples and neck. And I use it regularly even when not suffering from migraines as a preventative measure. I don’t know if it works but my migraines have definitely lessened.
Mine are usually hormonal I get them just before my period.
But also get them when stressed
Things that helped me were:
Eating regularly, I think low blood sugar was a trigger.
Avoiding too much caffeine.
Taking pain killers as soon as it started.
Having a hysterectomy! (Not for migraines but clearly the hormones were a factor)
The Drs you’ve seen sound a bit crap tbh.
Over the years I’ve been on beta blockers as a preventative - worked wonders for about 8 years; with a triptan on the odd occasion I did get a migraine. Then when the BBs stopped working I got referred (through my private health care, thankfully) to a pain specialist and he recommended anti-epilepsy drugs, which are also known to work as preventing migraines. I’m on Topiramate. Again, works a treat.
So definitely go back to your GP in the first instance and push for more.
Look here too:
I’ve found them helpful in the past.
@Mummoomoocow i have been to a neurologist a couple of times after begging to my GP to refer me.
Scans thankfully came back normal. I have been given medication to manage the pain and i have tried continuous medication also but with little result.
Thanks to everyone’s suggestions so far!
Daily stretching helps prevent mine.
What did your food diary look like? Did you cut out each typical trigger food and how long for?
For me I surprised myself with a low carb diet that has seen me have one migraine since November whereas I was having them every 2/3 days. I don't know why it worked. I started eating less carbs about two weeks after a hysterical trip to a&e believing it must be carbon monoxide poisoning since it became so frequent after we moved house.
Ice cold coke helps me too!
I’ve completely eliminated most of the common triggers - alcohol, cheese etc.
I still drink coffee but in moderation so maybe i should cut back as well. I do work full time with a toddler so i badly need caffeine!
There are things i could not completely avoid for example bright lights and screen lights as i work full time in an office based job. It is always a struggle to get through the day though.
Rizatriptan, buccastem and nurofen plus. Taken all at the same time. This helps me against mega migraine attacks. Without this they could last for days.
The caffeine and aspirin is great. However it only works for me at the very outset. Ie first sign of mild headache. So I don't always get to it in time.
The heavy duty solution is close to flawless (30 years with migraine).
I'm rarely bed ridden or get to the stage of vomiting these days.
Sumatriptan was the only thing that has worked for me and been an absolute lifesaver. Have you tried those?
Oh you poor thing. Do you take any supplements? The Migraine Trust has a list of useful ones to take. They have made a big difference to me; might be worth trying?
Sumatriptan for me too. I take it as soon as I feel the migraine is coming on. If possible I lie down for 30 minutes and then I can usually cope well.
I used to have severe vomiting with my migraine and - initially reluctantly - stopped drinking coffee. Since then I haven't thrown up with a migraine - total life changer.
Only exception, when I do have a migraine now, I'll have a Coca Cola and it helps.
My migraines are hormonal, so I try to be extra careful when I know a migraine might be coming - eating regularly, having an early night etc
I went from lying on the office floor wondering how to get home once a month to now having migraine that never quite develops and usually lingers for two to three days. Can manage with eg nurofen express or pink migraleve
Over the last 18m:
Daith piercing - may be a placebo but it works (heavy piercing)
No coffee ever
No still wine ever
Began a mainly vegan diet
Stopped eating quorn after several d and v episodes
As a chronic migraine plus cluster headaches the biggest difference has been from the hospital headache clinic and their specilaist headache nurses. GP's no longer have oversight as I am classed as too complex for GP management using British Association for the Study of Headache's Guidelines.
It really is worth pushing to be seen by a specilaist in headache disorders if after two decades you have not got any control of migraine. A specialist headache clinic has access to greater info on the newest types of management and treatment options. Most only need to be seen a couple of times to have their drugs reviewed before moving back to GP care. They can offer some 'off-label' drugs that might help that a GP is not able to.
My hospital clinic can give access to regional nerve blocks, gammacore, ultra high flow oxygen and similar that GP's cannot. They have also provided me with autoinjectors and similar drugs with an urgent self refer option to the weekly hospital clinics so I no longer end up in A&E when its very bad. Migraine truly sucks and a decent headache clinic can help to make the wrold a slightly nicer place to be in.
I carry tablets around with me all the time. 2 paracetamol, 3 baby aspirin and a strong coffee as soon as it starts nips mine in the bud very quickly and prevents the post fatigue too. The best thing for me.
What medication have you tried? There are loads of preventers and it normally takes a few goes to find one that works and you can tolerate. Topirimate changed my life but it took a good few goes to get there. If it hadn't worked the consultant was talking about Botox
I had to stop the topirimate for pregnancy and found that if I took my HG meds at the same time as paracetamol it works better. As others have said, Coke, something sugary and something salty all together works well. Ice pack on head or heat (bath, shower or heat pack) on neck or shoulders. Voltarol gel on shoulders. I've heard of people getting good results from TENS machine but it never worked for me.
I took amitriptyline for a couple of years and went from 2-3 migraines a month to 2 a year. I weaned off it very slowly and they haven't come back (it's been 2 years now).
My migraines were so bad I ended up hospitalised on a few occasions as they mimic strokes - visual disturbances and problems speaking, in addition to the regular pain, nausea etc. Sometimes the pain would last 2-3 days and I ended up needing pain killing injections.
The amitriptyline course was life-changing for me!
Can remember having them as far back as primary school, bothmsides of family suffer with them too. Over the years i suffered and took various meds that didnt work.
Last few years migrines increased, stress is a huge factor for me. Amytriptaline helps and sumatripitan works most times, although i get awful side effets even after headache pain gone. Being in bed, dark room and having fan on helps me, think the fan just numbs me a bit.
If at work i take sumatripitan as soon as i feel it coming on but end up feeling shit untilmi can get home to bed
Have you tried vitamin B2 (riboflavin)? There is some limited evidence, but they are continuing to study it, that taking like 4 times the recommended daily dose daily can cut frequency and length of migraines in half! My GP prescribed to me last year to see if it made any difference- I have to say I get them much less frequently as I get older any way but I do feel like it has made a difference. Warning though- it makes your pee luminous yellow!