I think it’s about time that I sat down to write this since I’ve been promising it to you guys for a few months now. There is just so much to say that I felt overwhelmed every time I sat down to write. I wanted to share this because so many people struggle with migraines and everyday headaches. You go to countless doctors and try the craziest things just to get some relief – just like me, I’m sure. I have some good news for you – I’ve actually found a breakthrough. I will preface by saying that I am, by no means a doctor. This is just what has been working for me and I’m sharing for those of you who are sick and tired of well – being sick and tired and are ready to try something new. So here is my headache treatment plan.
Let me rewind time here for a second. I’ve been getting headaches pretty much ever since I can remember. My mom tells me the earliest memory of me complaining about a ‘stomach ache in my head’ is 3 years old. THREE. What?! It sounds crazy, but I don’t ever remember a life without them. As I got older, they evolved into everyday headaches and migraines around that time of the month. Followed by extreme nausea, vomiting and basically being bedridden for the rest of the day. The worst part is – sometimes I couldn’t even sleep it off because it was so painful and uncomfortable.
PREVIOUS HEADACHE TREATMENT PLAN
I started on birth control when I was around 15, it was a low dose but I stayed on this pretty much up until 6 or 7 months ago. This is just the [not so] natural path in our society – every teen girl is on birth control. When I was in high school the migraines got so bad that I ended up in the ER. They ran 100 tests, x-rays and even a spinal tap. Zero answers, everything came back clean. They referred me to a neurologist who looked into my eyes with his little light thing while I was on the verge of vomiting. Made me look left and right, up and down and then chalked it up to stress. Which – okay maybe it was stress in some part but prior to going to the ER I had already been bedridden for a WEEK. It had to be something else. I eventually started feeling better but still struggled with that everyday headache, and god forbid if I hadn’t eaten in 3 hours, horrible headache and HANGER.
I decided to make an appointment with a neurologist of my choosing. Cleveland Clinic is one of the best in FL so I decided to find someone there. He performed some similar tests, ‘walk in a straight line, stand on one foot, blah blah’. He asked how long I had them for and a little bit of my family history. Side note: my mom and her mom both suffered from the same thing. Which I feel like we justify for some reason like ‘well it runs in the family so’. At this point, when I had decided to go to the neurologist I was just ready for some relief.
I was so tired of having headaches every single day and migraines taking complete days away from me. He prescribed me amitriptalyne, the generic of Elavil. This is actually used to treat depression but when used in smaller doses it works against nerve pain. This is a pill I would take every day. He also prescribed sumatriptan or Imitrex as a ‘savior’ pill. Something that I could take to knock out the pain if nothing else was working. I used these pills for around 3 years, and it worked pretty well for me for the most part. I still got some headaches, but not nearly as bad or as often as before. That time of the month was also a little bit more bearable. However, I did not want this to be my headache treatment plan forever.
I’M OVER THIS
That’s how I felt when the amitriptalyne stopped working so well. At this point, I was entering the ‘wellness scene’ with Prickly Fresh and had just learned so much about Chinese medicine and how food and herbs can change so many things. I decided to find a holistic doctor. I wanted to get to the bottom of the problem, I was tired of putting a Band-Aid on it. My first visit, she asked me so many things no other western medicine doctor ever had before. She asked me to see my tongue, if I get “hangry”, if I ever eat anything and get a headache after, and so much more that made me feel like she knew what she was doing and something was going to get fixed here.
I should also mention that at this point I had also had chronic pain in my upper back, right next to my spine for about 5 years. I mentioned that to her as well. We decided on an acupuncture and Chinese herb headache treatment plan that would work best for me. I started going in twice a week, and every time I went back we would talk about what I felt this week, where I was in my menstrual cycle, she checked my tongue, took my pulse in 3 different places and then decided where to have my acupuncture needles and what herbs would be best.
… More about this and the specific herbs and my headache treatment plan part 2!
Just here for the food? I feel you. Trust me? CLICK!