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Looking for ideas – ears always plugged up / migraines

  • By dave013

    My entire life I’ve been healthy, fit – never had more than a simple headache before. About two months ago I started on this journey of daily migraines that have never gone away. All out of the blue. Each day can range from a migraine of a 3 all the way to a 10. I’ve been to the ER a few times, have CT scans, MRI’s and more. Everything as far as blood work and everything else has been clean. Neurologist is classifying it as chronic migraines and they have me on a range of medicine. Started off with pamelor, but that caused my heart to race and moved me to topamax recently. I’ve tried cutting out pretty much everything in my diet to see if that had any impact, maybe it was something I was eating, but that hasn’t helped either as far as triggers.

    My question is, I feel like it has to be something else other than just migraines. How do I go from never have more than just a common headache to being stuck in migraine cycles solid for two months. It always starts off with pain behind my ears then just grows to the rest of my head. Light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, but always with the ears. Anyone else have any similar experiences where your ears always feel like they are plugged up no matter what and always a common thing to their migraines?

    Just looking for ideas, new to all of this and trying to figure things out.

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi dave013,

    I can imagine how frustrating this must be, but it’s good to hear your image studies are clear and you are seeking out medical attention.

    It seems almost anything is possible with migraine disease. I’ve heard from others who have a full feeling in their ears, and/or ear pressure as well as painful ears during or just before a migraine attack. Here is an article on ear pain and migraine attacks; https://migraine.com/blog/unusual-migraine-symptoms-earaches-ear-pain/.

    Not everyone with migraine disease has food triggers. Migraine attack triggers can include but are not limited to becoming dehydrated, skipping meals, irregular sleep schedule, light and/or odor sensitivity, changes in the barometric pressure and many others. This section of our site has more information on migraine attack triggers; https://migraine.com/migraine-triggers/.

    The best way to identify our migraine triggers is to keep a detailed migraine diary for a few months. This can reveal our migraine attack patterns and triggers. When you get a chance, take a look at this information; https://migraine.com/blog/keeping-migraine-diary-basics/.

    Hopefully others will be along shortly to share their experiences with you.

    Keep us posted on how you are doing,
    Nancy

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  • By dave013

    Thanks very much for sharing some of the links here. I’ve been trying to absorb as much information as possible since I’m completely new to all of this. Just crazy how I went from being perfectly fine one day to solid migraines almost every day. Thanks again for the help, I’ll read through now, and always great to hear perspectives from others that have gone through the same thing.

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    • By lynster

      I’ve been diagnosed with migraine, but I don’t feel like mine fit in with what you read / hear from others. I’ve been given a diary to note when i get the headaches but it’s so hard as I seem to have a headache every day but it’s not usually severe. And my ears are blocked every day. Actually not ears, just my left. I hadn’t even noticed it was daily until I tried to keep a diary and realised that in the 2 months since I started I’ve had not one day my ear hasn’t felt blocked. My neurologist seems pretty confident I’m getting migraines. I did have 4 visual auras over 5 days which is what led me to see a neurologist and I don’t know if I’m just having some kind of flare up that will go when the ear fullness goes??

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    • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

      Hi lynster,

      Thank you for reaching out to us and sharing your story. Receiving a new diagnosis is never easy. Let me see what information I can give you that may be helpful.

      Keeping a detailed migraine diary is a great way to see if we have any patterns to our migraine attacks and can help identify migraine triggers. If we can figure out what our migraine attack triggers are and avoid them, we may be able to reduce migraine attack frequency. Migraine attack triggers can include but are not limited to certain foods, dehydration, irregular sleeping patterns, odors, lighting, changes in the barometric pressure, fluctuating hormones and others. Some of these we can avoid, others we cannot.

      The symptoms you describe can certainly accompany a migraine attack. I know I’ve occasionally experienced ear fullness, pressure and pain with a migraine attack. Migraine with aura symptoms can include visual aura, numbness and tingling, along with many others. Here is information on this type of migraine attack; https://migraine.com/migraine-types/migraine-with-aura/.

      I hope this helps. Please keep me posted on how you are feeling,
      Nancy

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