Journal of Migraine Sufferers

I've only had migraines for 5 years, but when you're 14 that is long enough! They started in the fourth grade and I'm now a freshman in high school. I hate them. They scare me to death especially when they get so bad that I honestly think that I'm dieing. When I was in the forth grade I was still going to a pediatrition. Me and my mom described exactly what I go through...which is hard for me when I don't have the migraine anymore. He told me to take one Ibuprofen and try to keep going. Eventually it raised to two and I would go to bed. Waking only to take more medicine and lunge for the bathroom. It stayed like this for about a year. Then one day the normal doctor was out and I had to see another doctor that worked in the same office. She put me on a new medicine and gave me the awful and dreaded "Migraine Diet." After we had visited her we realized that my normal doctor was doing absolutely nothing for my migraines. I've been on a mission ever since. So we changed doctors. The doctor I'm now seeing put took me off of the medicine I had been on and put me back on my best friend the ibuprofen saying that the other med was lowering my blood pressure. She had me "dance" (do little exercises in her office...squats, walk on a line, point at my nose, close my eyes and point at my nose...ect.) testing to make sure I didn't have a huge tumor sitting in my head. We tried various medicines including imitrex, Fiorinal, and Midrin. None of which worked or had to many side effects to stay on. We always ended up back at the Ibuprofen. I got sick of only taking 2. It just wasn't enough. I wanted more. So I decided that I'd increase it to 3 every 4 hrs. Everytime that I got a migraine I would on average take at least 3 doses. On average I get about 3-5 migraines a week. That's at least 27 ibuprofens a week. It ended up that I was at least taking 108 ibuprofen a mo. Not to mention the ones that I would take just To "Be Sure" that I didn't get the dreaded migraine. Finally my doctor really cracked down. (Probably tired of my "Whining") She sent me to get an MRI. She set me up an appointment with a nuerolgist. Thankyou Doctor! So my MRI came out ok. And my nuerologist set me up to get an EEG. Which also came out fine. I'm now on two preventitives and Tylenol. Now I'm not allowed to have the ibuprofen because I became "dependant" on it. But now I've decided on my own after some counseling yesterday with my nuerologist to stop taking any symtematic medicines. Supposedly if you become "dependant" on symtematic medicines then your brain gets used to having that drug come everyday and if it doesn't then you get more headaches. Making it harder to stop taking them. BUT if you can absolutely stop taking them for 90 days then you can get them out of your system and no longer have to take them. Right now even at age 14 I'm probably suffering from "rebound Migraines" more than just plain Migraines. Hopefully I can stop altogether taking the Ibuprofen, Tylenol, ect. So PLEASE pray for me! I've got Zomig sitting in the medicine cabinet for the really SEVERE migraines in which i can't just grit my teeth and bear it and a suppository in the refrigerator to use if I make myself too sick. Doctor doesn't know I'm doing this but SCREW him! I'm gonna do this and I'm gonna make it. I love you all and I'll be praying for you!

---Linsy Duncan <>
Huber Heights, Oh USA -

I almost always awaken with my migraines, for some reason whatever it is that happens inside my head takes place during sleep and I sometimes fear what will greet me in the morning...however I must say that my migraines do not take me by suprise, my sleep prior to one of these episodes is always disruped by hours of insomnia , followed by a tightness across the eyes and a sort of a mask of coldness across the face, also usually 12 hours or so prior, I will have vague visual disturbances, fatigue, eye aches and if I'm smart I will attempt to abort the migraine, sometimes I can, usually when it finally gets it grips on me, I give into the pain, which stabs at my eyeballs and between my eyes and temples like millions of pitchforks,nausea sometimes vomiting, and lasts from 1 day to 3 and always leaves me feeling weak,dehydrated and scared. I have given up on the heavy duty drugs as they for the most part are ineffective, but have found Ice packs and Bicarbonate will end the headache, Alka-Seltzer GOLD , works if I can get it down within, 1 hour after the migraine begins, sometimes I CANNOT, drink it, also it is very difficult to find ALKA-SELTZER GOLD, I pack my head with ice packs and it will end the headache most of the time, my migraines are always the type that will send me to bed in the dark with absolute silence, I am going to look around for products with bicarbonate ....Does anyone know why bicarbonate works on migraine strength pain and what other products are available besides the very hard to find ALKA-SELTZER GOLD???I will admit most of the time when my head is exploding, I cannot drink the bicarbonate due to sever nausea, but it works most of the time when I do manage to drink it during the early onset of the migraine. Tricia

---Tricia <>

I don't know ehere to start.I am 28 years old have always had typical headaches colds all the time, strep, bronchitus, mono, very poor imune system since I can remember. I have seen many doctors they all say Epstein Barr virus dignosed at 18 years old in fact had to stop college classes because of it.I work as a veterinary I am around animals all day and have 3 dogs and a bird at home(my mother thinks this is all allergy related) I was also in a car accident in my early 20s this caused neck trama which is why I have some neck and shoulder pain and a few headaches.I also have been strep positive in my blood for the last year(Dr.tells me some people will always remain positive?) Just some history on my medical status before I started with these headaches. The day after Holloween 1 year ago I woke up for work around 5:15 a.m. as normal I thought I was haveing a brain blowout the pain was so intense and them I started to vomit. I had no idea what was happening my husband (a police officer) rushed me to the emergency room where I got a shot. It put me to sleep for the entire day and when I woke up the headache was gone but I had stiffness in my neck and shoulder.We chalked it up to eating choc. candy much caffine and the time of the month.Iprayed that would never happen again. Well it has many other times I have been to the emergency room 4 times for shots and the Drs. office once. I take all the meds. with codine, percacet.etc. nothing seems to help I crawl into my dark room tie a sock around my head and pray. I never imagined this is what people go through when they suffer a migraine. I would wish this on no one. So now what causes these allergies, foods, caffeine, the time of the month, sinus,neck and shoulder pain? What kind of Dr. do you see now allergist,head Dr. I don't know what to do all I know I can't go through this again.Thank you for letting me write about this and if you red this entire letter thanks. Any comments or sugg. would help greatly. Thanks again Carrie N.J.

---Carrie <>
nj USA -

29 Years old and just started getting migraines in the past few years. The pain is the usual "ice-pick" in the eye type. they get so bad that I get dizzy and throw up. They usually last at least 12-24 hours. Despite medications like Midrin and Ziac, sleep is usually the only answer. When the pain Is gone, I feel I just faught a war or something. Yesterday my OB/GYN gave me a sample of an inhaler (suppose to be fairly new). Tried it and it helped the pain a little but made me vomit A freind who is using told me that this is because it works by rapidly shutting down blood vessels to the brain...Is this true??....I've heard some good things about Excedrine Migraine. Think I will try it. **** Please Email me at with any advice or if you have tried Excedrine Migraine. Laurie Sidney, Ohio USA

---Laurie <>
Sidney, OH USA -

I have had headaches since I was 7 years old. Now I am 16. The thing that works good for kind of bad headaches is these pills i have been on for 3 years. They make my not so bad headaches go away and don't really work on my terrible migrains go away. Only sleep make my terrible headaches go away and they don't always go away. The pills I have been taking are Butalbital/asprin/caffeine.

---mariah mohary <>
santa cruz, ca USA -

Well, here goes. I've been having low grade migranes for the last several years - and never thought much of it. I had tried taking an assortment of OTC medications, but nothing worked. So I stopped treating my headaches. My husband was very concerned about the frequency and intensity of the headaches I had learned to deal with. I've been putting off his requests to have it worked up, as I really hate doctors. I fear that they'll tell me that they can't find anything to substantiate my pain. Last Saturday, the typical ice-pick-in-the-eye-socket got so bad that I needed to spend the day in bed. Monday, I called for an appointment to have someone evaluate them. My headaches are always at the front of my head, the bad ones (like the one I've got now) are like ice picks in my eye socket. I seek out a quiet, dark room & call it a night. Most times, I find that sleep is the only cure for them. I woke up with them daily for months until my father suggested that turning on the humidifier was necessary to ensure that the walls didn't crack - and it might help the headaches. It did. I'm looking forward to my appointment (almost a month away) so that I may finally be able to treat/control them - but at the same time, I don't want to go because of my hatred and distrust of doctors.

Chicago, IL USA -

My husband has been suffuring of headaches since he was 12 or 13 yrs old. He saw a doctor for two months ago who gave him some good advice. His headaches have disappeared (I cross my finger)... Here is what he has done : he stopped to eat or drink CHEESE, MILK OR PRODUCTS WITH MILK, ALCOHOL.


My migraines began at age 22, and I am now 28. They started my final year of college after a several-weeks long virus which doctors could not identify, and finally called a "mono- like" virus. Within two weeks I was suffering about 2-4 migraines per month--common migraine--always right sided. My father has migraine, and my grandmother did too. My headaches at that time were mostly triggered by too much exposure to sunlight and therefore I would always get them on Saturdays after spending the day outside. Over the course of the first year, however, they changed to more frequency and by one year I was experiencing what later was diagnosed at Basilar Artery Migraine, losing consciousness, hallucinating, unable to move or coordinate my legs, numb right arm, difficulty with speech and memory. Now, six years from the beginning, I continue with BAM and common migraine, suffering with migraine an average of 15-20 days of every month, particularly premenstrually. My worse BAM trigger is cheddar cheese, but sometimes they come out of the blue. I have had them while driving and once hit a parked car, and once drove up a one- way street the wrong way--I had no pain at the time but became suddenly highly confused and my surroundings, familiar ones, looked bizarre and surreal. I got stopped by the police needless to say. Now I wear a medic-alert bracelet in case one day I get so confused that I am mistaken as intoxicated or some such thing. I have been on every medication imaginable. I hope those of you with BAM know not to take Imitrex, similar drugs, or Migranal; there is increased risk of stroke. (Also, no birth control pills.) For a very long time I was very angry at these migraines, but have over time been able to accept that they will be a part of my life for decades to come and in some way form part of my identity. Thinking this way has helped me to proceed with each day as if I am a "normal" person without a chronic illness; on days when I physically can't do, I am straight- forward with others: "I'm sorry, but I have a terrible migraine today and cannot function too well". If they can't understand then it is not for me to worry about. Hope everyone has a pain-free day.

---Anne Hollister <>
Chicago, IL USA -