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#95091 - Sat Jan 08 2000 11:33 AM Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
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Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
A couple of years ago I started getting migraine headaches. If any of you suffer with migraine's could you please share you tips on how to get some relief outside of medicine?

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#95092 - Sat Jan 08 2000 01:59 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
chelseabelle Offline
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Registered: Thu Oct 07 1999
Posts: 10282
Loc: New York USA
I used to suffer with migraines when I was younger, but, fortunately, they are not a problem any longer.Truthfully, the only thing that helped me was pain medication--and that only worked if I took it immediately at the outset of the headache or the visual symptoms.
Have you tried strong coffee, or coke syrup--since caffeine is supposed to help ?

Does anything in particular trigger your headaches?

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#95093 - Sat Jan 08 2000 02:04 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
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Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Not really, except I have them about once a month, if you know what I mean. I have been staying away from caffeine, I didn't know that it would help. I'll give it a try, thanks.

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#95094 - Sat Jan 08 2000 02:28 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
chelseabelle Offline
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Registered: Thu Oct 07 1999
Posts: 10282
Loc: New York USA
If your headaches are definitely migraines then caffeine should help.Migraines are caused by a dilation of blood vessels, and caffeine causes the blood vessels to contract.Cafergot (spelling?) is a medication given for migraines, and I believe it contains some caffeine.
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#95095 - Sat Jan 08 2000 02:30 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Thanks for your help, chelseabelle.

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#95096 - Mon Jan 10 2000 02:49 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Linda1 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11250
Loc: Munchkinland
JoJo2, I'm glad to see this topic, as I am beginning to have pretty bad headaches monthly myself. Never used to before. I'm curious to see what kind of advice you get.

I have headaches anyway. I have an increased spinal pressure (pseudotumor cerebri) that causes pain. However, I think that's gone away (hopefully for good this time). Also, I think I carry a lot of tension in my neck and shoulders that causes headaches.

I know it sounds wimpy, but have you tried the new Migraine thingies that stick on your head? I've used them occasionally, and they seem to take some of the edge off. That and just being in a dark, quiet room.

Also, (I know you said no medication, but this has helped), my doctor prescribed Esgic Plus - if I can catch the pain when it first starts, that seems to take it away. Usually puts me to sleep, too, though!

I don't know that I have true "migraines," but pain is pain. I don't like any, so I try to find out what's going to be the best remedy. If you hear of anything, let me know.

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#95097 - Mon Jan 10 2000 03:09 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Linda1, since I left ITT (the corporate world) and starting working from home, I don't have any health insurance. That is why I am trying to find some relief without using medication. One thing I noticed, just before a miagrane comes on, I see little sparkles and sure enough my the next day I am in terrible pain.

Besides taking a long hot bath, I find that soaking my feet in hot water for as long as I can relaxes me. I can't sleep when they hurt really bad, and I find if I pet my rabbit while reclining on the couch, it helps to keep my mind off of the pain and helps me to relax a little.

I hope some other people jump in here and give us some good tips to help us out. The next time you get one, let me know and I will try to mentally send you some soothing thoughts.


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#95098 - Tue Jan 11 2000 10:53 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
chelseabelle Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Thu Oct 07 1999
Posts: 10282
Loc: New York USA
There is a new over-the-counter medication out specifically for migraines.I'm not positive, but it may be made by Tylenol.Perhaps it would help.
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#95099 - Tue Jan 11 2000 11:07 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Thanks chelseabelle, last night I got some Exedrin for Migraines and it contains caffiene just like you said. I will let you guys know if it helps. Thanks again.


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#95100 - Tue Jan 11 2000 11:26 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Linda1 Offline
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Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11250
Loc: Munchkinland
I'm still trying to find some helpful information to relay to you. Here's what I've found so far (this is from the AMA Health Insight):

Diet
An important part of your diary will include foods that you eat. This will help you and your physician identify associations between your diet and migraine. You probably will not have to severely restrict your diet, but you should stay away from foods or additives that you think may trigger headaches. Your physician may recommend avoiding alcohol, especially red wine; foods with monosodium glutamate (MSG); foods that contain tyramine, such as aged cheeses; and preserved meats with nitrates and nitrites. Also important: Eat regularly--don't skip meals.

Sleep
Too much or too little sleep can trigger a migraine attack. Be consistent in your sleep patterns. Maintain a regular bedtime, and try to wake up at the same time each morning.

Hormones
Many women with migraine have attacks linked to their menstrual cycles. Fluctuating and especially declining estrogen levels are thought to play a role. Menstrual migraines can be more debilitating, difficult to treat, and last longer than other migraines. Migraine also may worsen in early pregnancy; however, in later pregnancy, it often improves. Migraine typically declines in frequency as women age. There is evidence that oral contraceptives or estrogen-replacement therapy can provoke or worsen migraine in some women.

Stress and Anxiety
A variety of relaxation techniques can help you manage your body's response to life's daily pressures. Learn to pace your activities. Try to set aside time each day to sit quietly with your eyes closed, let your muscles relax, and give your mind a break. Try not to worry about stress that is beyond your control. Regular physical activity can also help keep you on an even keel.

Environmental Factors
Environmental triggers of migraine headaches include weather or temperature changes, glaring or fluorescent lights, computer screens, strong odors, and high altitude.

Protective Measures
Steps you can take to increase your resistance to migraine include regular sleep, a healthy diet, eating at predictable times, regular exercise, not smoking, relaxation, and meditation.

----------------


I looked last night, and the sticky things I mentioned in my other post are Migraine Ice. They are made for several areas of the head. The ones I used were for the forehead. Actually, I've heard that ice itself can be helpful. Try using it on the head or even on the back of the neck.

I'll let you know if I find anything else. You do likewise.

[This message has been edited by Linda1 (edited 01-11-2000).]

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#95101 - Tue Jan 11 2000 04:35 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
indigoforest Offline
Participant

Registered: Tue Jan 11 2000
Posts: 6
Loc: Green Bay, WI
Something that is not very widely known is that aspartame (nutra sweet) breaks down to the equivalent of wood alcohol in your system. Too much Nutra Sweet does it to me everytime, and I'm down with a massive migraine.

What I do when I get one is to find the darkest room I can, and put a cold washcloth over my forehead and eyes and I sleep it off. Although, Excedrin for Migraines is also an excellent otc pain reliever. That's helped too.

------------------
...sometimes sanity takes vacation time on me...

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#95102 - Tue Jan 11 2000 06:05 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Linda1 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11250
Loc: Munchkinland
Just out of curiousity, what makes Exedrin for Migraines different from plain Exedrin? Don't they both have caffeine? What makes it work for those headaches in particular?

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#95103 - Wed Jan 12 2000 02:45 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Thank you for taking the time to research this subject Linda1. I think I fail when it comes to all of the AMA Factors. I am probably guilty of most on the list. Maybe now that you brought it to my attention, I will be more aware of my daily habits (the bad ones)

You said that you just started having you headaches monthly, the same thing goes here. Up until about a year and a half ago I hardly ever had headaches and when I did I took two aspirin and it was gone. Migraines are still new to me and sounds like they are to you also. It looks like we are starting to get some good advice and with chelseabelle's wisdom, we will find some relief as well as support.

Indigoforest, thanks for the info. Do you know what products contain aspartame (nutra sweet)? I haven't been aware of this so I haven't been looking at the ingredients on the labels.

I also like to be in a dark room, but my problem is that when the pain is extremely bad, I can't sleep. I just bought some Excedrin for Migraines, does it help to knock you out? I haven't tried them out yet. Do have the answer to Linda1's question as to what the difference is between Excedrin and Excedrin for Migraines is?

Please keep the advice and information coming!


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#95104 - Sun Jan 16 2000 02:57 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
sandalwood Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Sun Oct 17 1999
Posts: 5643
Loc: Camarillo California USA
Yes it is the caffeine in Excedrin that helps the headache. My sister has terrible ones also and she swear by Excedrin if she catchs it early on. She notices it in her vision first. I remember while working in a nursing home that coffee was always given first for a headache before meds.

I swear by peppermint also. Peppermint oil mixed with olive, or sweet almond oil and applied to the temples,forehead, and back of the neck at the nape and higher up seems to help my sister. Also pepppermint tea. You might want to give it a try!!

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Sandalwood's Cosmic Creations: Working with the magic of love....

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#95105 - Sun Jan 16 2000 03:48 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
sue943 Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 19 1999
Posts: 35367
Loc: Jersey Channel Islands        
The expert on migraine is Hillsider - what she doesn't know about it can be written on a stamp! You should be able to find her e-mail address by checking on her postings - I could give it to you but I am not sure if that is the done thing on here.

Sue

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#95106 - Sun Jan 16 2000 04:12 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Thank Sue, maybe it would be best if you sent her an e-mail asking her to stop by here if she gets a chance. I sure would appreciate it and so would the others who suffer with these bears.

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#95107 - Sun Jan 16 2000 08:06 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Anonymous
No longer registered


Yeap, Sandalwood is absolutely right about the peppermint! I know it sounds weird but if you apply the fresh leaves on the temples it really works...at least for my headaches anyway.
Also, caffeine does seem to do wonders too. You could mix a tablespoon of coffee in with a Coke or Diet Coke and see if that works. Although, you´ll probably be wired for a while! LOL That´s what I used to do in college during finals, and any headache I had went away.
The dark room with a cold wet compress is wonderful for relieving stress in general.

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#95108 - Sun Jan 16 2000 08:27 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Thank you Sandalwood and Fortunata, I will give it try. Thank you so very much.

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#95109 - Mon Jan 17 2000 12:38 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
gtho4 Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 26 1999
Posts: 39966
Loc: Sydney oz downunder           
JoJo, can't comment on the female relationship to your migraine, but it's spooky reading about what you're going thru and the bits and pieces about u and your past from your posts. For the last half of 1999 I had awful headaches/migarines ... and now I've gone almost completely of coffee and coke/soft drinks (no mean feat). Now I'm trying to drink 2 litres of water everyday (this is hard 'cause I just plain forget when I'm so engrossed in what I'm doing). Next, I've almost completely off all junk food, you name it I was shovelling it down. finally you must laugh and retain a sense a humour. Endorfins are apparently a wonderful substance in our bodies (hormone or something). And mate I haven't laughed so much as I have these last days/weeks at Terry's place. That's what I'm up to ... there is probably no magic in what anyone of us 've written. You've just gotta try out a few different things (now I sound like a philosopher and that I definitely ain't). ciao

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#95110 - Mon Jan 17 2000 02:52 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
quokka Offline
Explorer

Registered: Fri Jan 14 2000
Posts: 72
Loc: Sydney
NSW Australia
JoJo,
my experience is that exercise, bright light and oranges (Vit C?) used to trigger my migranes. It would happen at half-time when I was playing footie as a youngster. Not having organised myself to have any breakfast, I would polish off 2-3 oranges at half time. The combination of the exercise and the bright sunshine, along with the oranges would trigger a whopper. Each and any of the 3 factors on their own or in combination with another one factor would not cause any problem, but the 3 together was dynamite.
Probably not much help to you unless you are an orange scoffing athlete in the tropics, but thought the sympathy might help - I know its a bitch when they hit.
PS someone told me chocolate brings it on for them.
Hope you get over them.

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#95111 - Mon Jan 17 2000 06:50 AM Re: Migraine Tips Please
quokka Offline
Explorer

Registered: Fri Jan 14 2000
Posts: 72
Loc: Sydney
NSW Australia
By the way JJ, as a bit of a trivia question while we are here, is it pronounced MEEgraine or MYgraine? I have heard both used here in Oz.
Perhaps a new topic for Funtrivia???

[This message has been edited by quokka (edited 01-17-2000).]


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#95112 - Tue Jan 18 2000 05:26 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Linda1 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 11250
Loc: Munchkinland
I say MYgraine. Never heard MEEgrain. Some people use that pronuciation? That's interesting. Has anyone from any other part of the world heard it this way? The things we learn here......!

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#95113 - Fri Jan 21 2000 07:28 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
sue943 Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 19 1999
Posts: 35367
Loc: Jersey Channel Islands        
I have asked Hillsider to pay you a visit!

[This message has been edited by sue943 (edited 01-21-2000).]

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#95114 - Fri Jan 21 2000 09:24 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Astrix Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Wed Jan 05 2000
Posts: 769
Loc: Canada
Years ago my husband had a period of a few months where he would get migraine headaches every other day. I have never had one, but I can imagine that you suffer horribly. We went to the doctor's and they couldn't pin-point the cause, but said it was possibly an allergic reaction. Nitrates (I saw that mentioned above) was one suggestion - therefore, no bacon or hotdogs. I even tried changing the laundry detergent and we had professional carpet cleaners come in to deep-steamclean the rugs. We never did figure out exactly what caused them and they went away after a few months. He said he could tell when he was going to get one - almost like an aura or a flashing light. Is that what you have? When that happened, he would quickly make a strong cup of turkish coffee and some painkillers (can't remember what but the doctor prescribed them), then take a shower as cold as he could stand, then lie in a quiet, dark room until it passed. I can't remember who told us to do this, but it seemed to help. It didn't get rid of the migraine attack entirely, but made it more bearable to suffer through. Good luck to you and hopefully they are only temporary like his were.

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I not only use all the brains I have, but all I can borrow. (Woodrow Wilson)


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#95115 - Fri Jan 28 2000 03:50 PM Re: Migraine Tips Please
Darcy Offline
Participant

Registered: Thu Jan 27 2000
Posts: 5
Loc: Charlotte, NC, USA
I also suffer from migraines. I have tried everything but what seems to work the best for me is to lie down on my back in a dark room with a cold wet washcloth on my forehead. I lie there and envision a field of wildflowers with a gentle breeze blowing them and absolutely no sound. I imaging myself laying in that field with the breeze flowing over me and the grass beneath feeling like velvet. I know this sounds bizarre but it works for me and it makes me feel better to know that I am not simply masking the pain with medication. Also if you are lucky enough to have someone there with you it helps if they palm your head (just like a basketball) with light but constant pressure.


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