Physical Therapy for Migraines

Some of my migraines stem from neck issues.  Specifically between the C1, C2 disks in my neck and the base of my skull.  Poor posture, injury and scar tissue can cause these to cause more tension and pain that radiates into your head.  I’ve started some physical therapy for those headaches/migraines.  I slash headaches/migraines  because some of the time I get headaches that start in the back of my neck, however if I strain my neck I will get a migraine that lasts for a minimum of 4 days.    Until recently when I went to my neurologist she just gave me Imitrex and I was on my way.   Until I really started taking detailed notes about my migraines and headaches did I notice that some of the worst migraines stem from the back of my neck and last for days, usually after I’ve done something dumb.  You know not wanting to make more than 2 trips out to the car for groceries so I tried carrying most of them in one hand so the other was free to open the door!  Some not so dumb, I have a 3 1/2-year-old that weighs close to 40 pounds and I tend to carry her on one side all the time!  She gave me a prescription for Zanaflex, which does help, but when I’m having a multi-day migraine I have to take them every day.  I can’t really do anything but sleep when I’ve taken one.

So this week I started physical therapy.  They told me to switch my pillow to a down pillow.  If you suffer from migraines, you too could probably call yourself a pillow collector!  I have so many because I’m always searching for the right one!   The therapist told me for my neck I should get a down pillow because they are easier to mold under your C1 and C2 spinal disks.    Here’s where they are:

 

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The therapist had me simply take my chin and touch it to my chest and asked me how it felt.  It felt super tight but I could tell it was helping to relax the muscles in my shoulders and neck.

He told me to buy a lumbar support for my back for my chair at work and practice sitting up.   I’m supposed to be doing an exercise for about 3 minutes every couple of hours, and I need to check my posture every 10 minutes to make sure I have a neutral spine.   I found this video online that seems to be as close as I can find to show you what exercise you may want to try if your migraines stem from the back of your neck!

 

Got My First Migraine at Age 11!

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Left Side Migraines Are Worse for Me!

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Sinus Headache or Migraine

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My Neurologist said that more than likely it’s a migraine because a migraine causes inflammation in the sinus cavities.

OnZetra Xsail Review

Unfortunately, I had to try OnZetra Xsail yesterday.  Unfortunate because that meant I had a migraine!   Here is a brief review of it from only 1 usage, please keep that in mind.

The packaging was a pain to open but it could have been worse.  It was very easy to use, unlike the Imitrex STATdose pen.  One end goes into your mouth and the other end goes up your nose, then you blow out your mouth and essentially blow the medicine up your nose. I kind of felt like I was doing cocaine…never actually done it, but I would imagine this is how you kind of do it!   The theory behind this is, if you have a headache, why are you treating it with something that goes in your stomach, why not directly to the source of the pain.  Makes perfect sense!    I was told that people had reported it working within 20 minutes but it could still take up to 2 hours.

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After 20 minutes no relief, but now on top of a migraine I had a sore throat because the medicine was draining down my throat.  Yuck!  The dosage is much smaller than I’m used to taking when it comes to the Imitrex pill.  I’m prescribed 100 MG of Imitrex and can take up to 2 of those in 24 hours.  I usually cut them in half because if I can get away with less, why wouldn’t I?

After 2 hours I still had NO RELIEF.  I had taken an Imitrex pill at midnight because I felt it coming on then.   I figured if I woke up and it wasn’t better I would finally try this medicine.   Well at 6 a.m. I still had a migraine and I tried it.   It didn’t work so I was bedridden the rest of the day.  Not fun!!

So, I cannot recommend this for myself. Let me know if it has worked for you!!!  I’d love to hear back from other people who have used this!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thyroid Dysfunction and Migraines

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Here are some articles saying that thyroid issues CAN also cause migraines.

http://blog.themigrainereliefcenter.com/can-hypothyroidism-cause-migraines

http://www.wilsonssyndrome.com/thyroid-and-migraines/

 

 

 

 

Exercise and Migraines

I’ve read many articles over the last couple of months that say that exercising helps headaches and migraines.   I have to admit I’ve often scoffed at those articles. The thought of exercising with a headache, let alone a migraine seemed ridiculous.   Now, I’m not saying I exercise when I have a migraine, that would just be crazy!   However, I have been exercising for 3 months and my migraines and daily headaches have been cut in half!  Did you hear me, by HALF!!!!

Here are some of the articles that I have read about exercise, migraines and headaches.

Exercise for Migraines on Migraine.com

The Migraine Trust

The effects of exercise and exercise-related changes in blood nitric oxide level on migraine headache by S Osün Narin, L Pinar, D Erbas, V Oztürk and F Idiman

Migraines: Simple Steps to head off the pain

I usually do about 30 minutes of plain cardio about 2 to 4 times a week (depends on how much time I have) and 2 HIIT routines a week, plus strength training.   I also pay very close attention to my posture at work as I’m a Systems Administrator who sits for most of my work day.  I also try and get regular sleep at minimum 6 to 8 hours every night.

I get my HIIT routines from Liz Moore-Mom In Love With Fitness , Her Facebook Page  Instagram Videos!

 

New Migraine Medicine Looks Promising!!

Dr. Joel Saper from the Michigan Head Pain and Neurological Institute in Ann Arbor, Michigan has found a possible drug , currently named ALD403 that prevents migraines for up to 3 months!! Not FDA approved yet, but several studies are in the works.  You can even sign up for these still!!!    The worst side effect reported is a little irritation around the vein that the medicine goes in.   Watch the video from WXYZ.com!

Michigan Headache and Neurological Institute

Exciting news for me!  I was recently accepted to become part of a trial for a new medicine and the Michigan Headache and Neurological Institute in Ann Arbor, Michigan.   I will be going there on the 22nd of February for my first evaluation.

If you want to find out or participate in a study go to this page and find out more details and call them!   The more research and treatment options we have the better!!!  Make life better for people with Chronic Migraines!

Since MHNI categorized me as a Chronic patient I am going to be finding out what the process is to receive Botox and get it covered by my insurance.   I will let you know what the process is and give you tips and see if it helps me and let me know if it helps you!

After my last 12-day migraine I’m willing to try anything to ease the pain and regain my life back!

If you suffer from Migraines help yourself while helping others!!!!  VOLUNTEER!!!

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12 Not So Known Migraine Triggers!

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