Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Migraine Prevention

I'm sure I've said it before and I'll say it again - I love Works for Me Wednesday Backwards Edition. I don't feel like I have alot of advice to give but I sure don't mind asking for it!

I've always gotten the occasional migraine. As in, maybe once a year - usually less. So I never really worried about it because it was so infrequent that I had to deal with them. But this past year they've become more frequent - still not as bad as many who suffer from them, so I'll try not to whine too much - and I've noticed that they seem to be exercise induced. Out of every ten -fifteen times I would run maybe once I would get a migraine. Again, that might not seem like a lot, but compared to maybe once a year, it's a definite increase. It really stinks because I love to run and really enjoy it and I've always been a runner, whether for sports or just as a way to stay in shape.

It only seems to happen when I run (once when I was walking at a very high incline ant a fast pace) - I've done intense boot camp and step workouts and it's never happened.

So - anyone out there have any ideas on how to prevent these exercised induced migraines so I can get back to running. I hate getting miigraines so much that I'm at the point where I don't want to run anymore. Any ideas would be most appreciated!!

Check Shannon's blog over at Rocks in my Dryer to see if you have more helpful advice you can pass along to someone - or post your own question!


Tami said...

When I started having migraines, the dentist checked and I was grinding my teeth. When I did anything strenuous or during sleep, I would grind my teeth. I started out with a night guard which can be worn during the day when exercising too. But 3 and years and 4 months later, I just got braces off yesterday (check my blog if you want to see. And I am migraine headache free! I've only had one in the time that I had my braces on and I think it was stress induced by my mom (Hee Hee). Good luck!

Kevin and Amy said...

Oh boy, that is a tough one. I'm afraid I have very little advice on migraines. I remember having 2 in my life, both at GCC. My remedy was to lie in my bed, in the dark, listening to Bread. Yes, Bread, the old 70s band, not the tasty toast treat.

Isn't the deal with headaches that they have to do with veins and arteries that don't open up as well? I don't know where I'm getting that except that I thought caffeine was good for headaches because it opened up blood vessels somehow. Obviously I never took any sort of A&P class EVER. It sounds like voodoo to me, so I would certainly seek the help of a professional...not a quack like myself.

And hey...thanks for the shout-out on your blog to our blog! I confess that I'm often clicking on your links to other blogs and I'm thrilled to have "made the list!"

Also, I meant to comment that the Cinderella vs. Snow White smackdown was hysterical and would make any mother proud! Those two little girls are wonderful! I hope you don't get too many "prank" 911 calls on your hands...that was a very thought-provoking entry! And I love that your place of thought is the bathroom...who among us has not come up with an amazing idea while reflecting in the bathroom?! It is certainly the best place for idea-generation.

Julie said...

I'm so sorry that you're getting more frequent migraines, meg! it's terrible! I've been getting them since I was 14, and very often. I haven't quite found a cure. It's good that you know the "source" - though frustrating that it's running. I wonder if you drink enough water surrounding the time that you run? Maybe try to hydrate really well before, and after if you don't already. I find that my headaches in general are almost always diet/hydration based.

Also, I chart my cycles each month (E and I are doing NFP for our 'birth control') and I have found that I get a migraine every single month when I ovulate! It sucks, but at least I know what it's caused by!!!

Kristy said...

I struggled with migraines for a little over a year. Mine, thankfully, have been nearly eliminated since I've cut caffeine from my diet. Its opposite of what works for most of people, but there you have it.

Anyway, I would just really encourage you to talk to a doctor. Migraines are an exclusionary diagnosis - meaning that if they can't find anything else that's causing the problem, they diagnose you with migraines.

So, it might be that there is something else going on. Even if not, a doctor can help you understand the different types of triggers (they're different for everyone) and figure out exactly what's causing yours (maybe its dehydration, or something else exercise-related?).

Good luck.

Anonymous said...

I don't have a great prevention but have found a soothing remedy. Put some hot water in a Ziplock type bag (as hot as you can stand it, it will cool down) then place it in another bag (to prevent leaks) and lay in a quiet room with the heat over your aching eye or lay on the side that is hurting. It seems to offer comfort and open up blood vessels or something. A "rice pillow" works well too. good luck

Marlo said...

I popped over from the WFMW site too... and I get the occasional migraine too. It seems to be that there are certain "triggers" for people. I'm wondering what could be going on when you run that causes you to get one....is there anything else associated with running that could be causing it- such as...bright sunlight, extra caffeine to get you pepped for the run, not enough sleep,etc.... Once I figured out the triggers for my migraines I was able to prevent them, which helped immensely.
Also....if you've found something that works (ibuprofen or something stronger)- maybe you can take some before the run?
Hope you find something that works!

Teri said...

Meg - I wish I could help you - I just want to say that I think it's awesome that you enjoy running! I wish I could say the same! I hope someone has an answer that works for you!

Mzzterry said...

I suffer from very frequent migraines & was surprised to find out from my doctor that a little known trigger is actually dehydration. By drinking water immediately upon waking in the morning I have been able to cut done on the frequency of some of mine. It might be worth a try. The 8 hours (yeah right?!) of sleep is a long time to go without water! It might be worth a try for you. Good luck.....

Tafy Sills said...

I popped over from the WFMW site. I am a fellow migraine suffer. I can't add much to the advice you have already been given. The key is to find the trigger. It may not be related to your running. It maybe, like someone suggested, what you are doing, eating, or drinking before your run. Try writing down what you eat, drink, and are doing before you run and see if that will help you pinpoint it.
I do have suggestion about what to take when you have one or think you maybe getting one. Try feverfew capsules. Feverfew is an herb. It has hepled me a great deal, but make sure you take it on a full stomach or with alot of water or it will make you sick on your stomach.
Good Luck.
Tafy Sills from Blackberry Lane Farm

Meg said...

I, too, found out mine were caused by tight neck and jaw muscles. Part of it was stress-induced, part of it was spinal misalignment. (I now go to a chiropractor monthly and have one headache a month as opposed to one a week!)

I also found out that I clench my teeth at night. After a trip to the dentist and orthodontist, I (gulp) was diagnosed with TMJ and had braces put on for the 2nd time in my life. I'm coming up on the 7th months wearing them, and my bite is more aligned, which means less teeth clenching. The momentary discomfort and embarrassment of braces at 30 pales in comparison to pain free living!

The only migraines I get now are menstrual-related. Anybody have advice on those, I'm all ears.

Suzy said...

ITA with the others, you need to find your trigger point. If you are getting migraines after running, you may have something pinched in your back or neck. I hope you can figure it out and the migraines they go away.

Loni said...

I am so sorry to hear that you are having migraines. I have had them for almost half of my life. Others have made some really good suggestions, and I would certainly look into them.

I have been seeing the same neurologist for over ten years and he has given me many suggestions. One is to take Aleve one hour before exercising.

Also, studies show that 400mg of Vitamin B2 has helped migraine suffers. I take a B-Complex from GNC and take additional B2 to get the full 400mg. It took about 2 months before I noticed a difference but it has helped.

Summer is always worse for me. Anytime I get too hot or get my heart rate too high I will get a migraine. Try to pace yourself.

Allergies can trigger a migraine, and inconsistency can also trigger them. If you haven't run in a while, take it slow when you start up again.

I hope you can find your trigger and that you will be able to run migraine free!

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