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Living with Migraine

How to survive

  • By Tamara

    My migraines have gone chronic the last year, it has been 7 months since I have had ANY pain free moments, even pain meds only bring it down to a 1-3. I’m on a waiting list for our headache clinic but the wait is 12-14 months (so next summer sometime). I have many days where I curl up and do nothing but cry because it hurts but I can’t take anything because you know there will be a day that is worse.

    It is unbearable some days and the only thing that helped me through is that I had a general neurologist appt today and we would find something to help. Well, the only thing he has is to continue not using pain meds more than 10 days a month and we will up the preventives I’m already on, one at a time every 2 months.

    Ok great but what do I do in the meantime!? I’m in so much pain daily, I don’t have a life, my boss is getting very upset with me only be able to work 20-25 hours a week but I CANNOT lose any salary because I’m single and own a house, I have no savings at the moment either because of this.

    I need to be able to function daily! Just don’t know what to do ….. Any tips greatly appreciated.

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  • By Tammy Rome

    I am so sorry to hear that you are having such a rough go lately. Good for you, getting an appointment with a specialist! I know it’s a long wait. Many times it is well worth the wait. But that doesn’t help you right now.

    Is there a chance you are eligible for FLMA? That would allow you to keep reduced hours and take time off when needed without the risk of losing your job. Another option may be short-term disability, if you company offers this benefit. These options are a way to keep money coming in while you try to recover.

    We have a ton of information about coping with chronic migraine. While these tips may not reduce your pain, they might help you and your doctor come up with some new ideas to try while you wait.

    https://migraine.com/migraine-basics/chronic-migraine-management-treatment/
    https://migraine.com/blog/recommendations-for-those-with-chronic-migraine/
    https://migraine.com/blog/holding-on-to-hope-with-chronic-migraine/

    I know thte one thing that got me through my own fight with chronic migraine was a good toolkit. I carried it everywhere. By having a large arsenal of comfort measures (things that help you relax and feel better even when in pain) I was able to cope with the pain even when I couldn’t hide in bed.

    https://migraine.com/blog/comfort-measure-basics/
    https://migraine.com/infographic/tips-for-building-your-migraine-emergency-toolkit/

    Also, you may already be doing this, but if not, it’s usually a good idea to start tracking your pain and other symptoms. Having a 12+ month record for the specialist to review when you finally get to that appointment may provide clues that eventually lead to relief.

    Best of luck to you. Please write back and let me know how you are doing. Feel free to ask any questions that come to mind. Chances are good that someone on the forums will have the answer.

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  • By Tamara

    Very bad day today …. wonderful horrible migraine fulled week to end a horrible year of pain. I do track my migraines and have been since june. I take all the vitamins that are suppose to help (magnesium has helped a little, sometimes), NUCCA chiro (which had me migraine free in the past so we know its at least partially neck related but its been 4 years since my jaw surgery that caused me unable to hold my alignment), acunpuncture, craniosacral and reflexology/healing touch. I do all of those therapies weekly except reflex and I’m going into debt because of it but they are the only things that give me any relief – and its only an hour or two normally at milder pain but I’ll take it.

    I hit my 10 day (oops miscounted, 11 days this month) of meds on Christmas and have been in horrible, on the couch crying pain since. Today I have hit my emotional limit and cant take it anymore. Ice, hot shower, stretching, foam rolling back, essential oils and kitty snuggles that normally help a touch are just making me feel worse.

    I have no support, bills to pay, work to get done and I cant move at all without shooting pain. How can I handle another year, week, day of this? Why should I? I cant horseback ride anymore because of the pain which was my life, my rodents are in filthy cages because I only had energy to clean half of them, my cats are bored, my house a mess and my credit line is increasing and my boss is starting to get frustrated with my lack of work and being a sales rep in downturned economy (I live in alberta, Canada) is hard enough ….

    my neurologist (not headache specialist yet – have to wait until summer) will only let me up my prevenattives which aren’t working at all!! every 2 months and had NO comments, help for what to do on these days – when I’m in severe pain, the depression swallows me up and I cant take anything. I use to take bendryl or gravol and at least get some sleep but I’ve used it so much I don’t even get drowsy anymore. :'(

    Sorry for the rant, just having a hard time.

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