A Migraine Saga Part 2

Read part 1 here.

After my one glorious month of no headaches whatsoever, the next few months were quite different. I had at least one headache every week and 4 migraines over a 14 week period. I was starting to get desperate again, but I really didn’t want to go back on propranolol until I had exhausted every other option. So I tried a few more things.

Massage therapy
A co-worker really suggested I try this as it helped her when she used to get migraines. Let me tell you, these are wonderful. My therapist focused mainly on my neck and shoulders, as apparently I was very tense. She told me the benefits of fixing my posture, taking breaks at the computer and maintaining a lower level of stress. We also discussed how my body runs warm and how my face turns beat red when I exercise. I’d really benefit from ice packs on my neck and shoulders after working out and during my massages. Keeping that area from tensing up as it could be preventing normal blood flow and could be causing my headaches. I went a few times, once during a migraine and it was alleviated soon afterword. She then recommended going to a chiropractor also.

Chiropractic
I was so terrified of going to get all my bones cracked, but I went and had my consult done.

Those are the xrays they took. Obviously I have some slight curvature of my spine, haha. He also pointed out that my neck is quite straight with a tilt forward and it’s probably from me hunching and looking down. This probably doesn’t help my tense shoulders so I went a couple times a week for a month and I ended up loving it, even the neck cracking. I tried my best to stay relaxed and take breaks to stretch my shoulders. I had fewer migraines, but just as many headaches and they began to cluster. I was getting 2-3 a week, every other week.

Then my chiropractor asked about my poop. Don’t be embarrassed, we’re all friends here. I confessed that sometimes I go 3 days without pooping and that my idea of eating vegetables was “eating a salad a week.” He really suggested I try eating better and maybe taking some magnesium supplements to help regulate myself. I worked myself up to 500mg a day and I’ve been taking it ever since. I don’t know if it’s helping with the headaches, but I do poop everyday now!

Birth Control
I also stopped taking birth control. Last year, my doctor told me to try being on bc constantly, i.e. not have a period, since most of my headaches occurred either before, during, or after my period. I didn’t like this at all as I was constantly spotting and it was difficult obtaining enough Nuvarings to keep up with the schedule. So I stopped taking it altogether. Besides the other regular side effects of having a normal period, my headache patterns have not changed.

Where I’m at now
My headaches haven’t been as bad as they were last year; I still haven’t had more than one migraine a month. I have a few other things I can try including seeing a neurologist and trying “feverfew”. I have noticed that when I wake up with a headache on one side of my head, the sinus on that side is also stuffed up and I can usually get those to go away with sudefed. I don’t know if sinus problems have anything to do with headaches, but I wish all my my headaches were like that. So I’m at an okay place for now, but not as cured as I want to be.

The saga has now caught up with real time, so part 3 will happen eventually and hopefully it will be the last!

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