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Thread: Chronic headache

  1. #1

    Default Chronic headache

    Just asking:
    I am now on day 11 of a headache that isn't responding to regular OTC painkillers. I know I'm under more stress than usual, so I've been pretty much just assuming it's tension. I am currently uninsured AND flat broke, so going to a Dr. or anything medical is out.
    Does anyone have suggestions for de-stressing, or an alternative headache treatment that is inexpensive? Several friends have suggested massage, but I checked the pricing: no chance.
    On another note, does anyone else have a hard time being Little when your Big self is under high stress? Because it seems dumb, but when I most need the relaxation of being Little, it's the time I'm least able to to do it. *sigh*
    Thanks, I thought being laid off was the most stressful thing ever. It's not, apparently trying to get a business started is WAY more stress.
    Fingers crossed

  2. #2


    Deal first with the stress. In what ways are you under this much stress? Go out walking, preferably someplace nice. I ride my bike on our walking/bike trail. I also read when I have the time, and of course, write. Do things which make you happy, things which don't cost a lot of money.

  3. #3


    i can't deal with this right now because of my own;
    but start looking at food-triggers for your headaches/migraines. and stress as well.... ttfn

  4. #4


    Did you know decongestants can treat migraines? (Like Sudafed, pseudoephedrine.) Something to do with constricting blood vessels. But that also means it can cause rebound headaches when you stop taking it.

    Have you changed anything recently?

    Such as: Started/stopped drinking caffeine? Sleep schedule changes? Working in a new environment (as in building or room)? New scents -- cleaning products, air fresheners? How about laundry soap, fabric softener, body perfumes and soaps? New pets?

    The top 3 dietary triggers for migraine are caffeine, MSG (by its many names), and chocolate. Plus weather and air pressure changes.

    I was experiencing bizarre cycles of nausea, vomiting, and dizziness/vertigo a month or two ago, and on a hunch googled "dizzy + migraine". Ended up buying this book -- "Heal Your Headache, The 1-2-3 Program For Taking Charge Of Your Pain" -- and reading it cover to cover. (You can get it SUPER cheap used, basically just pay $4 for shipping) It's got some REALLY interesting stuff but I think I've hit the most vital things with this post.

    The author says basically all types of headaches are made by the same process, which is 'migraine.' We each have a migraine threshold which varies by individual, and the activation of migraine (pain or other symptoms) depends on the sum of all triggers. If the sum is higher than your threshold, you'll get migraine symptoms; if it's lower, you won't. He focuses on stopping rebound headaches caused by migraine meds, then lowering the controllable triggers (mainly dietary ones) but there's a lot of interesting stuff in there.

    Here's an excerpt about stress. Keep in mind he's writing this book for people who have suffered from serious, often debilitating, recurrent headaches -- that's what it's for. (So when he says biofeedback, etc. aren't sufficient, he means they aren't helpful enough to fix headaches for his patients; they may still be effective for stress though.) The first "step" is eliminating every med that can cause migraine rebound, which means caffeine and every migraine/prescription pain med, along with some randoms like Sudafed. (Over-the-counter painkillers like Tylenol and NSAIDs are ok.)

    I've bolded the parts that are most relevant.

    ~Anyways~ now that I've delivered the necessary medical stuff...

    Basically every physical activity is a common de-stressor for somebody, because it burns up anxious energy and it's fun (which is relaxing). If it's not fun, it won't really de-stress, which is why it varies by individual. I, for instance, LOVE to go running and I love rollerblading. I tried really hard to like yoga and several other things, but they just don't do it for me, and I can't make them. They just don't feel good.

    So basically, whatever you LIKE to do, whatever makes YOU feel good, try that!

    I also recommend blanket forts and pillow nests. Baking (cookies, bread) is a super calming and restorative act for me; also taking naps, and reading old favorite books. (I will go crazy if I don't spend enough time alone, so that's another thing I do: block out time to just be alone and do nothing.) Natural sunlight is guaranteed to make me feel better and more capable. And then of course, if you have pets, playing with animals is great for you in practically every way. Surrounding yourself with nice (gentle) smells and taking lots of breaks helps, too.

    It totally makes sense to me that you might not be able to access your little side when you're this stressed out. Littles are very vulnerable people, aren't they? Maybe you need a way to feel more safe and protected before you can let that part of yourself out.

    I hope you start feeling better soon
    Last edited by FaennaJo; 17-Aug-2013 at 05:42. Reason: made a note on medicine dosage

  5. #5


    Thanks for all the info!
    BTW the stress is: helping start a new company(I am one of the incorporation members), The office is over 100 miles from my home, so I am staying with my in-laws(10mi commute), and since all of my money is tied up in the business startup(more than planned) I am REALLY worried about meeting my mortgage payment(have been struggling for 4 months, they won't give me a break).
    Food triggers I know about: MSG, lactose, gluten. I am a caffiene addict, have been for years. As soon as I can get med coverage, I'm having an endocrine work up to check thyroid and adrenals.

  6. #6


    I get peppermint oil from Young Living oils. A drop rubbed into the temples/across forehead/back of the neck has always helped me.
    Peppermint Essential Oil | Young Living Essential Oils

    I tend to get UV-induced migraines (even with shades constantly drawn) because I'm UV-sensitive, and tension headaches from my cerebral palsy/scoliosis/degenerative disk disease. One bottle lasts for months at a time (or longer) depending on how often you need it.

  7. #7


    I use magnesium to keep headaches (and panic attacks) away. It has been shown that people who are chronically stressed are often magnesium deficient.

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by Kalis View Post
    Thanks for all the info!
    Food triggers I know about: MSG, lactose, gluten. I am a caffiene addict, have been for years. As soon as I can get med coverage, I'm having an endocrine work up to check thyroid and adrenals.
    Oh! Let me say this then: in all my reading there's been discussion that the more important thing may not be eradicating caffeine intake, but regulating it. In other words: take the same amount of caffeine, in the same form, at the same time each day. i.e. 1 cup of coffee, at the same brew strength, at 8 o'clock every day. Or 1 Mountain Dew at lunch time every day. Supposedly, it may be the ups and downs of caffeine (and blood vessel constriction) that cause headaches, not the fact of it by itself. (I still imagine that more is not better, though)

    ~Just throwing that out there, it may be worth trying/tracking!

    Good luck with your financial/living situation stuff! That stuff is really rough, I know.

  9. #9


    Lol, if I could reduce my caffiene intake to that level, I'd dance. I measure my daily coffee intake in POTS not cups. I'm currently averaging 3 pots, or three AMPs if I'm on the road. My MIL isn't helping the stress level any, as she has her own issues(I can't blame her, her mother was actively evil, father mostly absent). I'm thinking as soon as the business starts bringing in enough to give myself a salary my Econ worries will abate.

  10. #10


    Insurance or not broke or not, hospitals can not refuse you. If you are travailing it could be from glaring at the sun all day. 11 days is more than nothing to worry about. Not to scare you but my nephew was have those head aches and they found a small tumor. prolong head aches are not something to ignore . If OTC drugs aren't working them please have yourself checked out.

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