Let’s Talk: Migraines

Hey Everyone,

Bit of a weird post today I know !!

However, I really think that in order to be your best in the legal industry, you have to feel your best. Migraines are something that I have had to deal with since I was about 9 years old. Although they run in the family, I had a serious head accident when I was in school and the doctor told my parents that given the force of the blow, I would be subjected to migraines forever.

Looking back, migraines are such a small price to pay considering the outcome could have been much much worse and I genuinely feel so lucky. Saying this, they are still the biggest bane of my life. I have to say that I kind of grew out of them in my 20’s however recently given added stress they have started creeping back into my life. And let me tell you they came back with a BANG, literally !!

So, given that I just overcame a bad one a few days ago, I thought it would be fitting to post about some tips I’ve learnt along the way that take that piercing edge off of them.

Firstly, I often get asked well aren’t migraines just bad headaches?. Not for me no. I don’t think people really understand the severity of them. I think that comes down to different pain thresholds and different people’s experiences with them. For me, I get what I call triggers. I know when a migraine is coming. It starts with a VERY strong taste of metal in my mouth and my vision will go black with zigzags ( Don’t worry I have consulted so many doctors and continue to get checkups). Then, most of the time all of a sudden the pain will come in my head, into my jaw and down my neck and I’ll be sick with it. Often, I can’t move my head at all. I actually ended up having to wear a bottom brace as I was wearing down my teeth so much from the pain. Bit different to a headache right?

One plus is that I know how to deal with them a lot better now. There are certain things I actively do and things I avoid. Michael has learnt what to do when I have one and being honest he is my saving grace. Here are some things that help ease the pain for me…

  1. Get a daith ear piercing – this is one of my top tricks. I got it with a friend of mine and when the piercer pierced my ear I actually felt a muscle relax in my head. I went a few years with only a few headaches. I couldn’t recommend this highly enough. I was on so much pain medication prior and nothing worked. I did it on a whim and it actually saved my life.
  2. Black room and complete silence- when I get one I go into a pitch black room. Mike normally puts a blanket over the curtain to make sure that the room is as dark as possible. This helps as light pierces my eyes when I have a migraine
  3. Cold compress – I use a damp flannel that I wet with ice cold water every help hour to an hour. I like to place this on my forehead as I feel it helps with the swelling. I also like to put this over my eyes.
  4. Sleep – there comes a point where no tablets will help with the pain. For me it’s like taking smarties (lol). I know myself when a migraine has gone too far and the only thing to do at that point is to try and sleep. Sometimes I find it really hard to get to sleep given the pain so what I like to do is visualise a plain white box room and focus in on the white colour. This really calms my mind and helps me drift off to sleep.
  5. Certain scents – there is this one candle that helps alleviate the pain for me. It was actually a Yankee limited edition Christmas candle in a Christmas tree scent. However, sadly the company discontinued it and I haven’t been able to get it in a couple of years.

I hope that some of these tips and tricks will work for you also. Let me know if you have any to add to the list that maybe I can try.

Love,

Evangeline.

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