Thursday, June 28, 2007

A "Top Migraine and Headache Site" Award!

This is so cool. I received an email from Dan Marschinke, the producer at MyMigraineConnection.com that Migraine Chick had been named one of the ten best Migraine and headache blogs and sites on the Web, as picked by their experts.

Here is the press release:

HealthCentral.com Recognizes Top Migraine Web Sites and Blogs


ARLINGTON, VA- June 27, 2007- The HealthCentral Network, Inc. (www.HealthCentral.com), a leading online consumer health destination, today announced awards for the top Web sites and blogs dedicated to educating and supporting individuals living with Migraines and fostering the online Migraine community.

HealthCentral.com’s First Annual Top Site Awards recognize the Web’s best sites, from individual blogs to small Web sites, each committed to providing personal, quality information, support and inspiration to Migraineurs, caregivers, and their family and friends. The recipients of the award share HealthCentral.com’s mission in highlighting the patient voice in health information.

“We rely greatly on the advice and personal experiences of friends and family in all facets of life and managing a health condition is no different,” said Chris Schroeder, CEO and President of The HealthCentral Network (THCN). “This year’s Top Sites recognize the importance of sharing and learning from other people who have real life experience dealing with Migraines and join HealthCentral.com in providing trusted, personal information and support to the Migraine community.”

A team of experts from THCN’s Migraine site, MyMigraineConnection.com, chose this year’s top Migraine and Headache sites after reviewing and analyzing the most popular and influential Web sites focused on living with Migraines.

“The face of healthcare is changing. Studies show that patients who are better educated about their conditions and take part in the decision making process are more compliant with their treatment regimens and have better outcomes,” said Teri Robert, founder of Top Award winner HelpforHeadaches.com and Lead Expert Patient on MyMigraineConnection.com. “That's in no small part due to the impact the Internet has made on making information available. Paired with well researched and written content, online communities provide Migraineurs a place to share information, ask questions, and get vital support -- support from people who truly understand their situations. That kind of support can make the difference that keeps us looking for effective treatment rather than giving up and living in pain.”

The 2007 HealthCentral.com Top Migraine and Headache Sites:

The Daily Headache http://www.thedailyheadache.com/
MigraineCast http://www.migrainecast.com/
Abi's Migrainous Wanderings http://abimigraines.blogspot.com/index.html
Migraine Blog http://www.migraineblog.com/
Her Life in a Nutshell http://joannab.wordpress.com/
Help For Headaches & Migraines http://helpforheadaches.com/
Migraine Chick http://migrainechickie.blogspot.com/
Weathering Migraine Storms http://weatheringmigrainestorms.blogspot.com/
A ClusterHead’s Life http://versilleus.blogspot.com/
Somebody Heal Me http://migraineur.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Migraine Barbie and The Aspirin



Two aspirin are never enough for Migraine Barbie.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Is Chocolate Evil?


When I first got my migraines, my doctor told me to cut out all chocolate, so I did, which was a horrible task because I truly loved chocolate. For me any chocolate would do from the expensive stuff to the cheapest foiled wrapped Easter eggs from the drugstore.

Then a friend who has migraines said she had been trying chocolate during a migraine attack and it didn’t make it much worse. She said the expensive stuff seems to bother her least.

Recently, I’ve been trying pieces of Godiva during bad spells. The pain and duration of the migraine seems the same, so it makes me wonder how much chocolate is really affecting me.

Yesterday, I went to Krispy Kreme Donuts with a friend, and I spied a chocolate sour cream glazed donut. My head wasn’t hurting horribly, so I decided to try it. How much chocolate could really be in there anyway? After I ate, it didn’t make my head hurt worse, so I figured it was a positive experiment.

Then I had got carried away. Last night, I was at a campfire and smore’s were being made. I decided to try one. It was beyond yummy, but an hour later, kapow! Big head pain city!

So the Migraine Chick jury is still out on chocolate. Is it evil for migraine girls or not?

Friday, June 22, 2007

I'm Mad at Water!

I'm mad at Glaceau Vitamin Water right now. "Bottled water enhanced with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Glaceau helps people feel and function better through better hydration."

I was self-medicating myself at work with their Rescue Water, which included B vitamins, green tea and chamomile. Chamomile really helps me at work when I’m having a bad day. It relaxes me and calms me down with my migraine brain, but sometimes I don’t want hot tea nor do I want to do through the mess of trying to make iced tea at work.

I was so happy with Rescue Water until the other day when I bought one, and I realized about an hour later that I wasn’t feeling any better. I was looking perplexed at the bottle at my desk, wondering why, when I focused on the ingredients on the label. Where did the chamomile go?

Now the ingredients are green tea and EGCG. WTF? Don’t they know there are neurotic Migraine Chicks out there who are depending on their original Rescue Water?

So I went to their website and wrote them a nice long email about my dilemma and they have never written me back! I really don't think they are trying to make people feel better. I think they are trying to be trendy with the EGCG.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

33 Minutes

I went to the Belleville Strawberry Festival on Sunday, and I lasted only 33 minutes. One trip down the street of the fair did me in. As soon as I got out of the car and I started walking in the heat, I knew it was going to be bad. My head began banging straight away. It felt like my brain was bouncing off the inside of my forehead.

Still since I was with friends, I thought I would tough it out. I bought a strawberry banana smoothie, thinking it would cool me off. It helped a little, but a few minutes later, the dizziness started in and I almost tripped on the pavement.

I suggested we get something to eat. Maybe some food and a sit down in the shade would stabilize my brain, I thought. I bought a vegetarian pita and finished my smoothie with it. The food was a nice distraction from the pain, but as soon as we were finished and we started walking again, I knew I was heading for migraine zombie land.

I staggered around for a few minutes more, bought some local honey from a booth and announced I needed to call it quits.

I could tell my friends were disappointed, but they said I looked like I was going to expire. One friend even said I looked like shit and they took me home.

So once again, my migraine brain ruined a day out.

I’m really getting worried about my vacation in July. I’m supposed to be going to Mackinaw Island for a few days. How am I going to last under the summer blazing sun at a crowded tourist attraction? Does anyone have any tips for surviving an outdoor day in the heat when you are a migraine chick?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Migraine Barbie and Ken


"Not tonight, Ken. I've got a migraine."

Friday, June 15, 2007

Barfomatic

Not so long ago, I remember a time at work when if I threw up, I immediately went into crises mode and I went home sick. Now being a migraine chick, I’ve found throwing up at work is a commonplace, but still gruesome event. I can get myself to the bathroom and back to my desk, undetected and under the radar, unless someone actually hears me doing the deed in the rest room.

So now, it’s not a matter of throwing up at work, but how many times I yak before I decide to go home sick.

Yesterday, I was so proud of myself. I threw up three times because of migraine and I didn’t home sick. Give a gold star to the Migraine Chick.

Then I thought is this what I've come to. Being proud of something like that. It's actually pretty sad.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Migraines and Monsters

Last night, I rented the movie Cursed. It's a Wes Craven horror movie from 2005, which stars Christina Ricci where she is attacked by a werewolf and starts turning into one.

"A werewolf loose in Los Angeles changes the lives of three young adults, who, after being mauled by the beast, learn they must kill their attacker if they hope to change their fate to avoid becoming werewolves too."

During the movie, I really found myself relating to her. Having migraines is a lot like someone on the monster track. Your senses change. You become more sensitive to things like smells and light. You have to go hide in the bathroom, cowering in a stall, because ungodly things are coming over you and you make disgusting noises that scare your coworkers. (because you are throwing up)

And you begin living this double life that only another monster can understand. The only difference is that once she killed the werewolf that bit her, she turned back to normal. No such luck for migraine girls.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Bad Migraine Day Mascot





So who do you think makes the best Bad Migraine Day Mascot? I used to think Eyore was the best glum mascot in town, but then I came across Grumpy Bear from The Care Bears and I saw the movie Ghost Rider, where Nicolas Cage's head became a fiery skull (much like my head feels most days) so now I'm not sure who makes the best mascot for bad migraine days. There is also my own creation Migraine Barbie. Any thoughts or other recommendations?

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

so far this year

Back in January, I resolved to be more proactive with my migraines, but I'm finding I'm just as frustrated. Not to sound like a Debbie Downer, but here is everything I’ve tried so far this year, and my migraines are no better.

Supplements I’ve tried
Magnesium-I've noticed no difference.
B2-my face gets super hot and my pee turns a toxic yellow color.
Feverfew-no difference.

New Doctors I’ve Tried
One neurologist-she only tried to push topamax on me.
One family doc-she recommended me to a headache clinic I can’t afford.

New Drugs I’ve tried with my regular doc
Maxalt-bad side effects
Fiorinal-panic attack side effects due to the caffeine.

Massage
It only made things far worse. Imagine Uncle Fester’s head in a vise on The Addams’ Family, but with no relief.

Books I’ve Read
Breaking the Headache Cycle by Ian Livingstone
What your doctor may not tell you about migraines by Alexander Mauskop
Mastering Pain by Dr. Richard A. Sternback
Migraines for Dummies

CDs I bought for Pain Relief

Relieve Headaches - Health Journeys by Belleruth Naparstek
Chronic Headache by Jean-Luc Mommaerts, MD

Monday, June 4, 2007

Nicotine and Migraines?

How do you know when you are coming to the end of your migraine rope? When you see a commercial on television for nicotine patches, the kind people use to quit smoking, and you wonder if nicotine patches might make your head feel better during a migraine.

I have never been a smoker so I don’t know how it makes you feel. Still, I’ve seen many smokers looking pretty relaxed and happy with cigarettes between their fingers. There must be something to it.

I decided to call one of my smoking friends to ask her a couple questions before I headed to the drugstore.

Some of my questions included:

“Does nicotine actually give you cancer or is it the actual smoke?”

“Does nicotine speed you up or slow you down?”

To which she responded with a question of her own,

“WHY?”

I told her my theory. She told me there was no way I was going to the store to buy nicotine patches to help with my headaches.

“Fine,” I said. “They are probably too expensive anyway.”

Saturday, June 2, 2007

More Migraine Barbie!


I love buttons, especially ones like this one. I got it at Bad Buttons. I wore it to work on my blue jean jacket a couple times, but no one asked me about my chronic pain, so I put it on one of my Barbies.