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Sharing Time: > Do you get Migraine Headaches?

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message 1: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments What do you do to deal with them? What is the best OTC medication for them? Prescription?

My BFF gets them and she takes Fiorcet. She's given me one before and it definitely works.

message 2: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca White (rebecca_white) | 1028 comments I never had one until about a year ago. Then I went through a spell that lasted a couple of months where I got them every day. They weren't very intense, compared with what some people have, but I figured they were migraines because they were on one side of the head and other descripters seemed to fit. I drank gallons of coffee and that worked for me. My caffeine tolerance is almost obscene. I also took some OTC pills but I don't remember which one.

message 3: by Jammies (new)

Jammies I do get them, and OTC drugs will work for me IF (and this is the tricky bit) I get them swallowed before I start vomiting. If I can keep them down, three Excedrin migraine pills will keep the pain at the level of an ordinary headache.

If the vomiting has started, all bets are off and the only cure is either a shot at the ER or a four-five hour nap with an ice pack on my head. Best of luck to your friend, and Ko's advice is spot-on.

message 4: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca White (rebecca_white) | 1028 comments Good lord, that's terrible.

message 5: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments Koeeoaddi wrote: "ETA (with standard IANAD disclamer): if I don't have my meds with me, or the HA isn't too big, I take 3 ibuprofen, 1 dramamine and 1/2 caffeine pill. It's better than nothing, but only slightly."

I know ibuprofen and caffeine work on headaches. Dramamine? What does that do? I personally believe Dramamine to be the most wonderful OTC drug available but I've never taken it for headache before.

message 6: by Jammies (new)

Jammies smetchie, I think the Dramamine is for the nausea.

message 7: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments Well it's great for hangovers, too, if anyone was wondering.

message 8: by Michael (new)

Michael I've had ophthalmic migraines.

message 9: by Aynge (new)

Aynge (ayngemac) | 1202 comments From 12-21 I did. I used to see white spots and then the headache would come like, 30 minutes later. So I had some warning. One doctor gave me a shot that knocked me out, but I never got a prescription. I just had to deal by putting a cold wet towel over my head and lying very still for a few hours. I didn't get them that often, maybe once every couple of months or so. Then I just stopped having them. Thank God.

message 10: by ms.petra (new)

ms.petra (mspetra) my daughter gets really bad migraines (see Jammies #5) I took her to a neurologist over the summer. The doc said migraines are very common in teenagers and that diet and sleep are huge factors. She gave her a regimen to follow and a script but I don't know the name of the medicine. Excedrin migraine works if taken right when the headache is coming on. The same with the prescription. If not, it is a few hours of sleep in a dark room as mentioned above. I hate seeing someone in that kind of pain and feeling so helpless.

message 11: by Kristina (new)

Kristina | 136 comments When I was in 4th and 5th grade, I'd have migraines so severe I'd vomit. I haven't had a migraine in a couple of years but I get frequent headaches. Excedrin migraine or extra strength is my favorite stuff to take. My doctor gave me a prescription medication once but it didn't help.

message 12: by Jim (new)

Jim | 6485 comments I seldom get headaches at all, I used to go years between headaches. I always considered myself a carrier, I gave them instead of getting them.

My sympathies to those that get debilitating headaches it must truly be horrific.

message 13: by Michele (new)

Michele bookloverforever (lovebooks14) | 1970 comments I got my first migraine when I was 3. The culprit appears to be seratonin receptors in the brain. Migraineurs (people with migraines) have faulty receptors. There are 2 kinds of migraines: classic, which involve "aura" (vision distortions,light shows,blurry vision) and common without the aura. It usually involves pounding,throbbing on one side but can involve both sides. ALL over the counter meds can trigger a rebound migraine. The more you take them, the greater the risk of rebound. I had rebound headaches for 2 and 1/2 years. I call it my black hole period: a migraine 29 out of every 30 days for 2.5 years will drive you insane. Many things can trigger a migraine: certain foods can increase the amount of seratonin in your brain. If you want more info on these foods contact me or the national headache foundation. Also: strong smells, loud noises,flashing lights, bright sunshine, glaring lights. I tested Imitrex before it came on the market. In the beginning all you could get was the injections. Feels like a bee sting. But relief in 10 minutes. Warning signs of imminent migraine even if you don't have aura: cold hands and feet because all that blood is rushing to your brain. Research in Britain indicates that magnesium supplements might be helpful. See your doctor. I will never again take a seratonin reuptake inhibitor. I swear it's what made me suicidal during my black hole period. I use biofeedback techniques for everything under a "6" (1-10 with 10 being the worst pain ever: barry bonds hitting you in the head with a lead baseball bat every time your heart beats). I take triptans when I have to go out somewhere. Otherwise I lay down when I have to. If it's very bad, I take my sleep meds. The doctors are not sure if the triptans will trigger rebound headaches but I play it safe and never take more than 2 in a week. Also: the nsaids will damage your kidneys, tylenol will damage your liver. Caffeine can trigger a migraine and can trigger a rebound migraine. I refuse to take Topemax because one of the possible side effects is glaucoma which gallops in my family. There are a number of seizure medications which are used in treating chronic migraines. I use neurontin because it has the fewest drug interactions and because it is now a generic. Topemax is expensive and beyond my disability income limits. Migraines is my disabiiity: even with careful diet, preventive meds etc.etc., I get 3-4 per week which for me is good, Not that long ago I had a migraine every day for nearly 3 months. Not fun. Depression is common for anyone with a chronic illness that causes moderate to severe pain on a weekly basis. Migraines can present as sinus headaches because the pressure on the sinuses is intense.

message 14: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments Awful, Michele!

message 15: by Jammies (new)

Jammies Barb wrote: "Koeeoaddi wrote: "and, just FYI, Excedrin Migraine is chemically identical to plain old Excedrin (250 mg of acetaminophen, 250 mg of aspirin and 65 mg of caffeine per tablet). They just get to call it that because the FDA decided that that combination works for migraine. Cheesed me right off when I found that out. I thought it had been reformulated with some magical new ingredient. Nope. The only new thing is the label and the helpful insert on migraines. >:("


>:( Bastards indeed.

message 16: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments I have a 3yr old and I'm pretty sure it would scare the life out of me if she got a headache that bad!

message 17: by Mary (new)

Mary (madamefifi) I was diagnosed with "cluster migraine" in my 20s and was given a prescription for....something, can't remember the name of it. It did help, whatever it was. Midirone? Something like that. Anyway, I guess I grew out of it because I don't get bad headaches anymore. I've been under a lot of stress with a sick kitty lately and have been clenching my back teeth which gives me headache but OTC pain relievers take care of it.

All migraine sufferers have my utmost sympathy!

message 18: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments Midrin? That stuff makes me high.

message 19: by Mary (new)

Mary (madamefifi) That's it, Smetchie! I was supposed to take two at the onset of a headache and then every so often after. Now that you mention it, it did make me feel a bit weird.

message 20: by Michele (new)

Michele bookloverforever (lovebooks14) | 1970 comments midrin is habit forming. my headache specialist did not approve of anything habit forming which is why the triptans were and are a godsend. the injections work faster but insurance covers only the pills which take time to get into the bloodstream and to work. If I take them too late into the headache it does not work well. My migraines continued past my menopause unfortunately because I suppose they were never tied to my ovulation. Now the specialist tell me they should subside after 65: I am 63 now and still get migraines that last months. I try to keep busy and see a therapist for the ongoing depression. I blame my first ex for the "status migrainous" because he slammed my head against the kitchen floor 17 times in 1977 and the migraines got worse after that.

message 21: by Janice (new)

Janice (jamasc) I started getting migraines when I was a teenager until my early 40's. I tried all sorts of home remedies and pain killers. I was prescribed cafergot which is a headache preventative. You take it when you get the aura. I never got aura, so they were useless.

The only thing I could do was take Tylenol w/codeine and a robaxisal w/codeine, close the door, shove a rug under it so no light or sound came in the room, lay down with a cold compress over my eyes, and not move a muscle for hours.

The next day, I would have what I call a headache hangover. I didn't have the headache, but felt as if I could have a headache at any given moment.

I'm grateful I don't seem to get them any more. I do get tension headaches and they're bearable.

message 22: by Pat (last edited Feb 21, 2011 07:35PM) (new)

Pat (patb37) Jammies wrote: "smetchie, I think the Dramamine is for the nausea."

I never thought of that! Great tip.
Like Jammies, If I can catch it before the nausea hits, ordinary OTC stuff will get me thru. If not, it's usually 48 hours of puking alternating with writhing in pain and sleeping.
What usually gets me into trouble is when the headache starts in the middle of the night and I cannot get myself to wake up enough to take the meds.

message 23: by Jammies (new)

Jammies Pat wrote: "Jammies wrote: "smetchie, I think the Dramamine is for the nausea."

I never thought of that! Great tip.
Like Jammies, If I can catch it before the nausea hits, ordinary OTC stuff will get me thru. If not, it's usually 48 hours of puking alternating with writhing in pain and sleeping.
What usually gets me into trouble is when the headache starts in the middle of the night and I cannot get myself to wake up enough to take the meds."

Yes! The bad ones for me are the ones that start in the wee hours and I'm already nauseated by the time I wake up.

message 24: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments I'd worry about dramamine because it's so drying. Doesn't dehydration contribute to headaches?

message 25: by Jammies (new)

Jammies smetchie, vomiting is even more dehydrating, so if you can keep down the dramamine, you can keep down some water.

message 26: by smetchie (new)

smetchie | 4034 comments that makes sense.

message 27: by Lobstergirl, el principe (new)

Lobstergirl | 24358 comments Mod
I sometimes get the aura, but not the headache. I would say I get an aura every 3-4 months. I see fuzzy, vibrating shapes, the border of my field of vision is fuzzy, and I really can't see, as if I had just stared into the sun.

message 28: by Tom (new)

Tom Foolery (tomfoolery) | 107 comments Just an FYI...apparently the formation of kidney stones is a side effect of Topomax. My fiance found this out the hard way, after taking it for migraines.

message 29: by Lori (last edited Oct 09, 2011 12:04PM) (new)

Lori | 181 comments my migraines are baaaad, and can last for days, but one or two butalbital works for me, every so many hours as recommended or required--but usually, two will keep me ok for hours. three in one day, if ness, works for 24 hrs for me; and usually one or two the next day, if ness, also helps really well in getting rid of it altogether.

the most common OTC recommended for migraines is Aleve--if you don't have a script.

and, yes, caffeine can help--if you're lucky--and dark chocolate, too.

message 30: by Lori (new)

Lori | 181 comments Tom wrote: "Just an FYI...apparently the formation of kidney stones is a side effect of Topomax. My fiance found this out the hard way, after taking it for migraines."

a few years ago i took topamax for half a year, and at another time, also six months; it didn't help at all, but i didn't have any side effects. everyone's body reacts differently, but kindney stones, that's terrible!

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