Completely Unofficial, Made-Up Migraine Types: the Hourglass

Completely Unofficial, Made-Up Migraine Types: the Hourglass

Those of you who have been involved with migraine.com for awhile now may be familiar with my series of articles focused on “Completely Unofficial, Made-Up Migraine Types.” It’s been both entertaining and comforting to hear back from you all—who knew that these weird migraine attacks I thought I was alone in facing were actually pretty common?

Many commenters here on the site and on our migraine.com Facebook page have identified with me as I try to define these migraine types that a doctor would perhaps scoff at (though I shouldn’t assume that, especially as more and more doctors are taking steps to be better educated about migraine and all its forms).  Now I’m going to see if you think this “type” of migraine rings a bell for you.

I call it “The Hourglass,” though my initial term was “The Sandbag.”

Starting out well

The Hourglass is very slow and deliberate. Your day starts out fine. You may not feel incredible, but you certainly don’t have a migraine. You go about your routine, perhaps getting up and showering and heading to work. You make sure to eat balanced meals and even managed to go for a little walk between breakfast and work.

Slow nagging sensation

But you have this persistent, nagging sensation in your brain as the day goes on.  One grain of sand after another is filling up your hourglass/sandbag, making it harder and harder to go about your day. Your body is getting heavy, and your head and shoulders are carrying most of the weight.

Creeping down to the neck

At lunch, you feel like your neck is getting a little crinkly and crackly. You roll your head on your shoulders and then stretch. You may be getting a migraine, but you just can’t tell. Maybe you are just a little stuffy-headed because it’s spring. Maybe you just need to get up and out of your desk chair for awhile and give yourself a break.

Heavy head

By mid-afternoon, you feel as if you’ve gained weight, but all the weight seems to rest along your spine and inside your skull. Now you’re pretty sure this is a migraine, but the workday’s end is in sight and you don’t want to medicate if you can still find the energy to be productive.

Finally in migraine land

The sun is setting, and you can no longer avoid the reality of your migraine. It is here, and your head and body are full of sand. You can now envision yourself as an hourglass (or a sandbag if you’re not feeling the sexy hourglass vibe here): you started out relatively empty and light, but verrrry slowly, you filled up during the day. It wasn’t a sudden shift into migraine land (as with The Ninja). Rather, it was a slow process that took awhile to dawn on you.

How many of you out there have dealt with this completely unofficial, made-up migraine type? What has your experience been like? What other made-up migraine types would you like for me to write about? I’m curious, as always, to hear from you.  

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Migraine.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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