Friday, May 12, 2017

Managing Life with Migraines

Today was another doctor's appointment for me, in yet what has become a long, and sometimes desperate search for relief from the chronic migraines in which I suffer.

This time I went in 90% with my mind made up that I was finished with preventative meds. I wanted to remain steadfast in this stance, so I would not be persuaded in the moment, only to regret my decision on the way home as I often do. Still, I left the door cracked open so I could listen to reason, with a healthy mind frame of skepticism. I wanted to express that the current preventative med that I am taking is not helping, and the side effects were outweighing the benefits at this point, namely weight gain (which is a very touchy subject for me to begin with) and stomach pains.

And, so I did. I explained how I feel like I can't separate the side effects from my illness(s) at this point. There's no way to differentiate what is where, and I'm tired of putting my body on this roller coaster with only a small amount of relief. I asked for a pain reliever, and a break from everything else related to migraines. Long term, this may not be a good option. I'm aware of this. I just feel it is for where I am now. I can always take the doctor up on the offer for another med, or a referral to a neurologist later on.

I'm sure that there are loads of people that are in the same situation as I find myself in right now, chronically ill, and feeling like they're out of options for relief, or even a shot at living a life that they once knew. It's hard to accept
that I need to do things differently, and that I have to rework my life into something that more closely matches my current abilities, which can be really unpredictable. Some days are good for me, and mostly pain free, and some are not. Usually it is mix between the two of those black, and white areas with my wellness peaking, and valleying throughout the day, and into the night. My nights are often the time where I feel the best, which conflicts with the rest of the world's timeline. I'm learning how to readjust my life to live accordingly. I am fortunate that I have a husband that is willing to help, and be flexible with my needs. We often do things on our own terms, and live unconventionally.

There are a few tips that I have learned on how to manage migraines. These have worked for me, and may not apply to you, or anyone else. You are free to disregard all of it, or just some it. I'm just thinking that I may have tried something someone else may not have thought of before, and it could be helpful.

Methods that have worked for me during a migraine:
 * Caffeine, and pain reliever at the first sign of one coming on. 
* Finding a snack with protein with the caffeine (coffee for me). Something like a peanut butter apple, or cheese and crackers. 
* If I find one that is lasting beyond the first two methods I try some pedialyte, or Gatorade, I make my own pedialyte, and will post two recipes that I use at at the end of the entry.
* Try not to eat sugary snacks, which is easier said than done! 
* Exercise regularly, and do light exercises, or yoga during mild-moderate attacks.  Sometimes the stretching helps relax my muscles.  
* Use an app that helps to keep data on migraines. That way you can see if a new med is working, or not, ect..
What methods have helped you? Have you had similar experiences with chronic illness? 

Two separate recipes for homemade electrolyte drink

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