Really, the all time truth about migraines is…
They. Bloody. Suck.
You can end your reading right now if you want because, honestly, there really isn’t getting around that one fact. I spent most of my day yesterday battling a bloody migraine that I couldn’t pinpoint what triggered it. I’m usually really good about staying away from things that will flare me up or cause a migraine. And with my healthier eating habits it’s been a lot easier. Until yesterday that is. And nothing, and I really mean nothing, could soothe it. No medication – over the counter or natural. No comfort food (and yes, I know comfort food really wouldn’t have worked but still). Not even water.
Again. Migraines. Bloody. Suck.
What exactly are they? They aren’t just headaches. Anyone who has ever told you that well, they lied to you. Migraines are a neurological symptom that comes with a severe piercing in your head, sensitivity to light and noise and nausea. Most migraines can last 4-72 hours. I’ve had mine last for a week before. The best symptom of a migraine? When your body decides to say, “Hey, we hurt so go ef yourself and we’re just going to stop working.” No joke. Nearly 100% of my migraines happen because I had an allergic reaction to what I ate. And when it happens my entire left side of my body tells me to screw myself and stops working. Numbness, tingling in my arms, absolutely no power to work.
What causes this debilitation? The smarty pants-es who study migraines really don’t know. But, here are a few: Allergies. For me its MSG (bye-bye Chinese food and Pizza Hut red sauce). It could be dairy and gluten allergies too. Hormone imbalance and vitamin deficiency can trigger migraines. And the most common cause? STRESS.
How can you treat it? Depends really who you are, what causes your migraines, and how bad the migraines are. I’ve done quite a bit of research on this simple question. Not only because I suffer from it but I know some people who say they “suffer” from it but really they don’t so I offer a, “Hey, so this is happening to you try this.” If they refuse, well then we know they’re a bunch of liars. Sorry not gonna filter that.
- Quiet and darkness. I snuggled with my pups all day yesterday in the room, blinds down, low volume in the tv living room (thanks Luga) and just slept. Your body while sleeping rejuvenates itself. Why not let it?
- Water. Okay, my friends and family members probably don’t want to read this blurb here. I say water is a cure for so much. But, for serious. Flush whatever it is that is causing the migraine. You have gout? Flush the salt and other crap that flares it up. You haven’t pooped in a few days and finally did but your body still hurts? Flush all those toxins out with water and you’ll feel better. I kid you not.
- Yoga. This is more for stress reduction. I’m not the greatest with yoga but I really like it. It does relieve stress and helps work out all the old lady kinks I have in my body.
- Hitting up pressure points. Whether this is through acupuncture or just pressing certain pressure points, this helps. I love, love, love when my love presses the right place on my head and relieves that pressure.
- Essential oils. Peppermint really helps me. So does eucalyptus and lavender. There is some great essential oils out there. And here is a shameless plug: go to Land of the Living Apothecary. My friend Mindy is incredibly knowledgeable on what oils help what ailments. She’ll be honest and straight with you and the prices don’t burn a hole in your wallet.
- Migraine medications. Guys, I really hate putting any type of pharmaceuticals in my body. So, this one isn’t me but I know it works.
I can keep going on and on about things that help relieve migraines. But, honestly, the real remedy is being educated. Educated about what your triggers are. Educated about what helps you. Educated about what doesn’t help you. Somewhat of a perfect example, I don’t take pharmaceutical medications because I choose to educate myself. I would rather understand my body and put myself in a position where I can live a longer and healthier life. I don’t want to put any man-made drugs into my body knowing those have side effects as well.
My head hurts still guys. But, thankfully I’ve invested in myself enough to be able to live today through my migraine, be functional and enjoy my adventures. I gave you the 411 of what a doctor would say is a migraine and the cause of migraines. Now the real truth about them? They don’t have to control your life. As long as you’re willing to invest in yourself to figure it out.
Prayers for a throbless head free day. xoxo