5 things: I use to [try to] ease my migraines

five things

On July 3rd, I had one of the worst migraine attacks I’ve had in a long time, bad enough to make me go to urgent care for a shot of pain killers and nausea relief.

When the doctor asked me if it was my worst headache ever, I didn’t have to think about it: No.

The worst was the one that was so bad my face went numb and I thought I was having a stroke. I was in my early 20’s. I was terrified.

This one wasn’t as bad, but it was persistent and I couldn’t keep anything down, even water. So I stayed home and got help.

Sometimes these posts are about things I use on the regular; sometimes they’re about things I’ve learned/habits/etc. Today, I’m sharing five things that bring the pain down sometimes, even if it’s just a notch. 

Advil migraine, 3 at a time, every 4-6 hours

If that seems like a lot, it is. But it’s one of the only OTC remedies that brings the pain in my head down enough to make me semi-functional.


Eden’s Garden Breathe Easier synergy blend

I keep a diffuser in the bedroom, another in the living room, and another at work. This blend opens up my nasal passages and helps me breathe through the pain. Sometimes its enough (in combination with the above) to get rid of a migraine for a few hours).
If I have foolishly run out, peppermint or eucalyptus with rosemary can do the trick.

These are my three diffusers: bedroom (pretty wood exterior), living room (simple with a color changing light), office (mini, usb charger)

Tracking my symptoms

I use Kindara to track my cycles, along with my chronic health issues. I’ve also become more conscious of my prodrome symptoms (the symptoms that come before a migraine—kind of like the calm before the storm). My prodrome symptoms include neck tightness, extreme fatigue (needing naps), and a stuffy nose that makes it hard to breathe and requires deep breaths. Sometimes, it looks like extreme energy followed by a depressed mood and difficulty getting the right words out.

Hot water bottle and ice pack

I already regaled you with my love for my hot water bottle. Sometimes heat on my neck, jaw, or the side of my head where the pain is helps. Sometimes a cold pack on my forehead helps. Sometimes I need both. Sometimes nothing works.

Arnica gel

Like the ice pack, sometimes I need to slap something cold on my face to relax the muscles around my forehead, or my neck, or my shoulders, or wherever I start to feel the first twinges of tightness. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t.

Bonus: Turmeric with bioperine

Sometimes, it seems that turmeric helps. Or maybe it’s a placebo. Whatever it is, if it takes the pain away without knocking me out, I’ll take it.

There are more tricks I use, but these are the most consistent and effective. It’s a guessing game each time.

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Author: gricel d.

writer. librarian. cat lady.

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