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Yearning for hope

My 20 year old daughter has migraines. We have been trying all different meds and have seen many different doctors and read many books and she exercises and eats pretty well for the most part etc. Both sides of the family has historically had migraines, I had them for many years but they never stopped me from doing things and at some point I figured out a way around them for the most part. For her it is different, they stop her in her tracks several times a week usually. Sometimes the different meds work but other times they don't and the pain is terrible. I keep hoping to hear of the magic potion or at least find some kind of hope which could be in the form of others with similar experiences who've turned it around and found a way to have a life. Some particulars about her, she is in college part time online, she has a few great friend, she loves animals and her family, she is very kind and generous and a great singer. Possibly most important she has high anxiety which we believe a lot of this stems from. She is a wonderful kid who I feel helpless to help. Thank you for enduring my ramble. Any input would be great.

  1. Hi @RM011,

    Thank you for reaching out and sharing your daughter's story with us. It's tough to see our children suffer with debilitating pain. Let me see what suggestions I can give you that may be helpful.

    I hear you about hoping for a "magic potion" however, at this time there really isn't one. Having said that, there are over 100 medications, supplements, devices and complementary therapies that can be used to treat migraine, a genetic, neurological brain disease. The thing is when we have three or four migraine attacks a month, it's time to discuss migraine prevention with the doctor. Try not to lose hope!!

    Another thought is it may be time to work with an expert doctor who specializes in migraine and headache disease, even though it sounds like your daughter has seem numerous doctors. These doctors are certified in headache medicine, which is different than being certified in neurology - it's an additional certification. Let me share some information with you on how these doctors are different and how to find one;
    https://migraine.com/blog/seeing-a-board-certified-headache-specialist/
    https://migraine.com/living-migraine/change-thoughts-new-care/
    https://headaches.org/resources/healthcare-provider-finder/.

    How about trigger identification? Has your daughter been able to figure out any of her triggers? If we can identify our triggers and avoid the ones we can, we may be able to reduce attack frequency and severity. On the other hand, we can be vigilant about triggers, and still get attacks, this seems to be the nature of migraine disease. One of the best ways to do this is by keeping a detailed migraine diary for a few months. Many experts encourage their headache disease patients to do this. This article has information on how to keep a migraine diary; https://migraine.com/blog/keeping-migraine-diary-basics. I've used pen and paper to keep mine, but others find apps easier.

    I've given you a lot of information to go over, please let me know what you think and we can go from there.

    Wishing your daughter a low pain day,
    Nancy Harris Bonk Patient Advocate/Moderator

    1. Hi @RM011,

      Everything I can cross is crossed for your daughter to find a good migraine management plan.

      Don't hesitate to reach out with any questions you have.

      Have a good day!
      Nancy Harris Bonk, Patient Advocate/Moderator

    2. Hi again, RM! I'm so glad to hear she has a counselor she clicks with ... we all need a space to decompress sometimes! I hope that her age will be an asset in her migraine journey. New treatments are coming out all the time, and while there's never a "good" time to have a health issue, there are certainly more options available to us than ever before! Hang onto that hope always. -Melissa, migraine.com team

  2. Dear RM011, my heart goes out to you and your daughter! Nancy has given you excellent advice. In addition to that, I wanted to ask if you've pursued any options for coping with her anxiety. I have an anxiety disorder myself, and it's truly debilitating when your physical wellbeing makes you anxious, which leads to feeling physically unwell, which leads to more anxiety ... it's a terrible cycle that I wish on no one.

    If you haven't already, it may be beneficial to see how she feels about counseling. There is so much good that can come from therapy, not only for dealing with anxiety but learning to cope with the emotional weight of migraine. There's no shame in talking to someone, and if it doesn't feel like the right match, all she has to do is say so.

    Both of you are always welcome here anytime you have questions, want to vent, or just say hi. Sending hugs your way. -Melissa, migraine.com team

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