Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Migraine Awareness Month Blogging Challenge #5: Do That To Me One More Time

A comfort measure that I find helps me during a Migraine attack, enough that I go back to it again and again. Well, I like to be prepared... but, my brain doesn't always work very well - especially when I'm getting or have a migraine - and my meds tend to make my brain and body slow down. So, my husband recommended that I store a checklist of things to do before I take my migraine/pain meds. I now have a list that I can go through, so I can make sure to have everything set before I take my meds - that way, I can take them and lay down on the couch to rest.

My list includes things as (seemingly) simple as deciding whether or not to take my migraine meds (this includes checking my migraine diary/journal to make sure that I haven't already maxed out on my meds for the week), and to eat before taking my meds (I've made the mistake before of not doing this, and the rough side effects of the meds kicked in hard and fast - it's something I have to be very conscious of, especially since I experience a lot of nausea with my migraines, and it's harder than it seems to eat even just a little bit).

I then have a list of things to gather / do just before (or immediately after) taking my meds:
  • Cell phone - per an agreement with my husband, I'm to keep my phone with me at all times (I've needed help before and not had my phone with me)
  • Pillows / blankets - to make the sofa as comfortable as possible, since I'll be there for the rest of the day
  • Water & snacks - so I can make sure to stay hydrated and keep some food in my belly, even if it's small snacks throughout the day
  • Meds - daily and as-needed (so everything is handy)
  • Paper & pen for notes - to keep track of when I take my meds (so I don't take it too often or take too many), and I can also record random things that come to mind 
  • Ice pack and/or heat pad - I don't actually do either of these all that often because I haven't found a lot of relief with either one
  • Trash can - in case I can't make it to the bathroom to vomit (meds + migraines sometimes cause this)
  • Kleenex - I have increased nasal issues with my migraines
  • Socks - to keep my feet warm
  • Mouthguard - if I end up napping, I need this in my mouth or I'll end up waking up with even more pain
  • Chapstick - to keep my lips from getting too chapped, since my meds cause severe dry mouth
  • Blood pressure machine - my meds are narcotics, so they often lower my already low BP, so I try to monitor it to make sure it doesn't get dangerously low
  • Neuro-stimulator programmer - in case I need to change or turn off my stimulator
  • Air purifier - this helps with my nasal issues, as well as my frequent coughing
  • Remote control - for obvious reasons
  • Then - go to the restroom, take meds, and get as comfortable as possible on the sofa (in darkness, but TV on quietly)
By having this list and making sure that I get / do all of these things before taking my meds, I feel more comfortable that I have what I need to make it through the day. I think it gives my husband some comfort, too - he checks on me / I keep him updated via text throughout the day, so he knows how I'm feeling and if he needs to come home early to take care of me. But, I feel more able to get through his working hours, by having all of these things ready and on-hand / within reach.

This post was written as part of the Migraine Awareness Month Blogging Challenge (MAMBC), which is initiated by www.FightingHeadacheDisorders.com and the National Migraine Awareness Month is initiated by the National Headache Foundation (NHF).


  1. Great idea to have a list - looks like a well thought out one too.

  2. How do you deal with the issue of abortives? For instance, my Neurologist told me this week that I should only take Imitrex 4 times a week. I have to take 6-7 a week to survive. I started using Dilaudid yesterday, but I ended up needing Imitrex on top of it, so I'm not sure it worked.

  3. Thank you, Migrainista.

    Heather, I've been taking Demerol + Hydroxyzine, up to 2 days a week for my migraines. It's definitely not enough, but I don't want to raise the risk of worsening my migraines and getting into medication overuse headache (MOH). It makes things very difficult, but I follow the prescription to a 't'.

    I've tried Dilaudid, and it was horrible... I can't remember anything from about 8 hours of the day I took them, and I ended up throwing away some very important documentation. I don't even know if it helped my head at all.

    I just went to my doctor yesterday, so I'm going to be trying a few things that I haven't tried before (Sumavel DosePro, Sprix, Morphine - the first two will be my abortives, so I'll try Sumavel first to see if it helps, if it doesn't I'll move on to trying Sprix - Morphine will be my rescue med, unless the first two end up not working at all... I can always go back to Demerol, but hopefully I'll have less side effects with the Morphine).

  4. My Neuro said Demerol is the next step after Dilaudid for me. Maybe it would work better. I hope the new meds help make a difference for you.


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