Tips for migraine sufferers

Hello loves,

I've been a migraine sufferer for most of my adult life, but before Fibromyalgia they were a rare occurrence. Now they're very common, especially since my doctor took my migraine preventer tablets off my repeat prescription form. So much has been going on I haven't had the energy to fight this decision, so I'm focussing on preventing them and treating them early. I think the reason I get a lot of migraines is because Fibromyalgia makes me SO sensitive to light.

[Photo by Pixabay]

Here are some tips I've garnered over the last few years with regards to migraines. I hope it helps!

  • The first and most important tip is as soon as you feel a migraine coming on, do not ignore it. Don't try to push through, it'll only make things worse. Once when I felt a migraine coming on I thought 'It'll be fine, let's do some yoga!' and then spent 3 days in bed with a sick bowl propped up under my chin (when I wasn't sleeping 18 hours a day). Learn from a fool like me. :)
  • Try to remove yourself from noisy, bright environments straight away. If you are at work try your best to get home or move yourself to a cool dark room for an hour to see if it'll pass. If you're at home turn off the tv, dim the lights, put on sunglasses if it helps and don't use your mobile phone. If you have ear plugs, use them too. Just lay in a cool dark room with your eyes shut and if you're lucky, it'll pass. 
  • If it doesn't pass, sleep is the best thing. Go to bed and stay there until you feel better. Take a bottle of water with you and anything else you need.
  • Put a cool flannel on your forehead, if you can stand the weight of it (sometimes I can't when my head hurts too much, in which case kitchen roll soaked in cool water helps as it weighs less).
  • Keep hydrated. Migraines can be caused by dehydration. Make sure to take in plenty of fluids.
  • Keep some coconut water in the fridge. I buy this one in cans from Tesco. It has magnesium in it, and magnesium can help prevent or get rid of migraines.
  • If you have a significant other or family member around, get them to run around after you bringing you lots of fluids, cool flannels, a blanket or whatever else you need. You need to move as little as possible. James is fantastic when I have a migraine. He turns the tv off, dims the lights, brings me ice lollies and water, covers me with a blanket, and lets me sleep it off.
As the old saying goes "Prevention is better than cure" so here are some things that help me avoid migraines in the first place. They're all to do with light.

The first thing is using F.lux on my laptop. This dims my screen after sundown so I'm not staring into something as bright as the sun. Most often my migraines are brought on by too much light. Using the settings in F.lux I can turn my laptop screen brightness right down to a level equivalent to a dim incandescent bulb, which is a lot dimmer than the darkest setting my laptop naturally provides. The other advantage to F.lux is that as the light is warm and not the horrible blue light you get from computers and other gadgets, it means you can sleep easier at night after computer use too.

The second thing is using Bluelight Filter on my phone. Having my nose buried in my phone for half the day also can cause me migraines. In the evenings I use Bluelight Filter to turn my screen light right down (way beyond the dimmest setting on my phone) to prevent migraines and also to ensure I can be on my phone in bed without being wide awake for 5 hours afterwards. Bluelight filter is an Android app but there are similar apps available for iPhone users.

The third thing is we have dimmable and colour changing LED lightbulbs in the living room. We have these ones and they're brilliant. We can control them using an app on our phones, and you can make them just about any colour and brightness. We have the 4*e27 LEB bulb +2.4g rf wireless in RGB warm white, 9v. God, what a mouthful. We have them set on a warm orange light which doesn't offend my eyes.

Basically harsh blue light = migraine hell, and warm orange lights = soothing. I found this article which explains why blue light is so bad for us, and it explains more about F.lux and other things too.

Do you have any tips about dealing with migraines?

Thanks for reading.

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