Inherited migraine

I’m 37 now, and had my first migraine at around 13. I had them occasionally until I was around 23 when I started getting them regularly – around 12 per month. Memories of childhood are dominated by my mother being ill with the same condition, so it didn’t seem out of the ordinary to me to have them, or to suffer so badly and so often.

For me, triggers can include too much screen work, lack of sleep, low blood sugar or stress. But oftern there is no identifiable trigger, and I am caught unawares. I take Fluoxetine and Amatryptiline every day to help prevent them (this cut them from nearly every day to 12 times a month); Rizatryptin melts usually get rid of them within a hour or so, bu occassionally they’re like a storm – sit tight and wait for it to pass. I won’t leave the house without a melt in my bag, and get very panicky if my prescription for the other two is running low.

Because of my job (managing editor of magazines) I end up working through some of them – I’ve learnt how far I can go before I just can’t focus at all any more. A migraine can start as a pain over my left eye (stabbing pain), or in my left temple (pinching pain). I had both upper and lower wisdom teeth removed just in case they were the cause of the pain, my eyes checked several times, and scans done to check brain, sinuses etc. But sometimes the first signs will be nausea, aura or a nipping pain over my left shoulder and down my back. The pain can range from niggling and uncomfortable to banging-my-head-off-the-wall excruciating – how can the pain be so bad without leaving a lasting scar? I’m lucky to have a very patient husband.

I could write so much more – this is just the tip of the iceberg and has me sometimes seriously questioning my quality of life. But as I said, it’s just a fact to me – I sometimes can’t believe that there are other people who don’t get them – what must that be like! :0)

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