I have always been prone to headaches, some of them pretty bad, but it was only a few years ago that I started to realise that they were migraines. I don’t get any sort of aura, nor so I get sick.. and that is what put me off thinking of them as migraines. What I did realise however, was that I experienced two very distinct types of headaches.
The one that I can get any time is most probably a tension headache.. it’s pretty much all over, or across my forehead, it often doesn’t respond that well to painkillers, but at the same time, it’s something that I can cope with.. daily life can go on.
The second type however, is almost always on the right side, and it quickly builds up into something very painful. I do get a slight nauseous feeling, lights obviously make it worse, as does moving about.. but the main difference is the affect it has on me. I feel ‘ill’, and I start to find it hard to concentrate. It makes driving scary, and work almost impossible. (Do you really want me injecting you with something, if I can’t concentrate on picking the right thing out the fridge!?)
A few weeks ago, I had to do something I hate doing.. leave work, and go home to my bed. I know it can cause problems all round, but I really had no choice. Then a few weeks later, it happened again.
I decided to go to the local chemist, to ask if I could get the over-the-counter triptan drug. I have tried triptan’s in the dim and distant past, but had taken them too late, along with other painkillers etc, and hadn’t really been able to assess them.
Anyway, the chemist was out of stock, but she did suggest that I spoke to the GP I work with, to see if he would write me a prescription. He was quite happy to, so I gave it a go.
This was definitely a migraine, and I already knew that nothing else was working, so it was a good test. Sure enough, after about an hour, the pain had gone! I was very happy, to say the least!
Last night gave me a chance to try again. I had had an annoying tension headache all day, but it was starting to settle over my right eye, and that pain get pretty bad. Having the two types together is no fun! I had to head to the supermarket, so I took a tablet, and sure enough, within an hour, that pain had lifted.
Apparently, these tablets don’t work for every migraine, but if it clears the vast majority it will be a great help. In case you’ve never heard of them, there’s some info here.