I created this post as part of a campaign by Teva Pharmaceuticals. I received an American Express gift card for participating.
There is a single word that I have seen make the strongest and bravest people cower and shudder. It can turn the stomach and make even the strongest weep inconsolable tears. It incapacitates and is no respecter of persons. In fact it afflicts nearly 36 million Americans no matter their age, gender or race. That one word is MIGRAINE! So when it strikes, you should be prepared with a migraine survival kit!
Migraine Survival Kit
Don’t know if you have ever experienced a migraine? Learn about a Migraine and it’s symptoms. But for those that have had migraines, you know exactly what I’m talking about!
So what do you do when you are caught with a sudden migraine that you weren’t planning on experiencing? Like any one plans or anticipates a migraine! HA! They are almost always unexpected!
But that doesn’t matter. The fact is that most migraines are unexpected and unplanned. So what can you do? Create a Migraine Survival Kit. This is just a small basket or purse filled with a few things that help you manage your pain when you are hit by an unexpected migraine. It won’t cure it. But it can help you manage the side effects of a migraine like nausea, light sensitivity, aches, chills, dehydration and noise sensitivity (source : The Mayo Clinic Staff report)
- Sunglasses or Eye Mask for blocking out light
- Cold pack, Cooling Face mask, cool cloth, etc to lay on your head
- Peppermint based Essential Oil or rub. Just smelling it can help squelch the nausea, and open the sinuses to ease the severity
- Peppermint or ginger candies – for the nausea
- PJ’s! You are already miserable with a migraine, just go put on your favorite PJs so you can be as comfortable as possible
- Your doctor-prescribed treatment – you know…so it will go away or at least diminish in severity.
- Water – stave off dehydration
- Ear plugs if you are sensitive to noise
- Migraine Journal – to track the experience so you can see if there is a trend.
- Air sickness bag or bucket – in case the nausea wins your desire to keep dinner down.
- Calming music. Something that will help you relax but played softly so it doesn’t add to the pounding
- SOFT pillow- and I mean soft, your head hurts enough as it is.
- Favorite drink – again to calm and relax. Maybe a Mint hot cocoa or herbal tea that can double to calm the nausea. Sometimes I reach for my favorite caffeinated soft drink, Sometimes that helps. Or maybe it just emotionally makes me feel better?
- Important phone numbers on a card. You know so you can call in sick to work, call for support/help from friends/family. Call and cancel meetings. Let your kids know you may not be able to be as accessible as usual.
**These are things that have helped me cope when in the throws of an unexpected migraine, but may not work for everyone.
The severity of a migraine can last anywhere from 4 – 72 hours. So you always want to be prepared. For myself my migraines usually come with light sensitivity, sensitivity to noise, nausea and even sometimes blurred vision. So I’m not safe to drive when I am in the throws of a severe migraine. I need to be able to call upon others to help pick up kids, or get them to scout meetings or other appointments.
Triggers are something you definitely want to keep track of in your Migraine Diary. Avoiding your triggers as much as possible is the biggest part to your Migraine Survival kit. But some triggers can’t be avoided. Like changes in weather, stress, grinding teeth while you sleep (this is a big one for me), lack of sleep, sitting too long in front of a screen, bright lights, certain foods, too much caffeine, ironically caffeine withdrawal, allergies, dehydration and more (Source – WebMD on Migraine triggers).
Experiencing a Migraine is not fun. But by keeping a migraine survival kit handy, you will be able to reduce at least part of your suffering by making yourself more comfortable.
Learn more about Migraines by visiting MoreToMigraine.com.