Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Lexapro Times Two

First of all, I don't think I get any visitors, at least not regular visitors, to this blog other than my dad who also gets migraine headaches (Hey Dad!), but if I do, I apologize for not updating it in a while. I've been crazy busy, which is a good thing because I couldn't be doing half the things I'm doing now if I had headaches/migraines like I had at one point.

Yesterday I had a headache that Aleve only helped for a few hours, but it wasn't too terrible. I was still able to teach Bible study, actually.

At a recent neurology appointment, my neurologist doubled my Lexapro from 10mg to 20mg. He wanted me to keep taking Desipramine also, which I want off of because I don't like being on too many meds, but he advised me against changing too much right now since I'm finally having fewer and less painful headaches. Makes sense. My side effects (from either or both, not sure) are still dry mouth, dizziness upon rising, rapid heartbeat, loss of appetite and, I'd like to add, excessive yawning. Very weird but it's got to be from my meds because it's a yawn that's so strong it makes me feel like my jaw's going to pop out and it happens over and over, especially while I'm driving.

I haven't kept my sleeping/eating schedule and haven't exercised lately, so I think if I discipline myself, maybe I can improve my headaches even more.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

So long, Mr. Chiropractor

Quick update.

I let my chiropractor go. It was actually kinda sad, because he seems like a nice guy who really cares about his patients. I told him that my insurance was no longer covering my monthly appointments because they were for preventative maintenance, and since it wasn't helping my headaches, there was no point in going. Plus, I think the pillow I bought (in earlier post) is helping my neck pain. I told him I'd recommend him to anyone I come across who's looking for a chiro, so if you're looking for one in North Carolina, send me a note.

Last week I had headaches Monday-Friday, on & off. I had one yesterday too. The last few weekends I rode my new bike several miles. I'm going to exercise tonight too while I watch The Office, so maybe extra excercise will help my headaches. I'm still trying to keep a regular schedule, but I'm chaperoning a youth group lock-in tomorrow that goes from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., so I'll be a little off schedule this weekend!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

The Migraine Diet - NY Times Blog Post & Comments

I don't think I've heard of Judith Warner, but she appears to have a blog on the New York Times Web site called "Domestic Disturbances." In a post October 25 called The Migraine Diet she talks about her struggle with migraines. It's an interesting post, but what really peaked my interest was the comments section. I started reading people's comments and realized that the blog had a total of 572 comments, and the only reason there aren't more is they had to no longer accept comments, probably because there were so many. I haven't read them all, but when I have time, I will. Here are some samples:

I’m a huge fan of your column and also a cronic migraine sufferer. I encourage you to try Topamax. Years ago my worst migraines were put under total control by “calcium channel blockers” (Cardizem). I was migraine free and drug free for about 13 years. But migraines tend to come back and mine did. This time, calcium channel blockers didn’t do the trick but Topamax did. You start on a higher dosis and then you slowly reduce. I was scared when I heard the word “antiseizure” medication. I thought to myself, “I don’t have epilepsy…” But it’s been just a miraculous drug. Good luck. Only someone who’s felt the loss of control that suffering from migraines represents can truly understand you. Be healthy!
— Posted by Nancy Lisker

Wow, you just wrote the story of my own migraine-afflicted life. We migraineurs are the only ones who believe it’s really like that, which skepticism can be added to the list of burdens. But what I’m actually writing to tell you is this: Don’t go near the topomax! You could easily end up twitchy-faced, crawly-skinned, blurry-visioned, and dull-witted — and not necessarily migraine free. For that kind of outcome, I’d opt for the Peanut M&Ms every time. Happy Halloween!
— Posted by Janie Stoehr

(Note from Header - It's sadly kinda funny how different people are in their reactions to medications. FYI - I've tried Topomax...didn't work.)

My condolences. Good luck. My sister had migraines starting in college. Infrequent, then frequent, then crippling. After a million doctors who helped almost not at all, one finally gave her a list of things to try not eating. Turns out wheat was one of her major triggers. Ordinary, ubiquitous wheat. No wheat, no migraines. Instant cure for her. A few years later I started having my own odd sensitivities, and again wheat was a culprit, along with soybeans for me.
So on the one hand, after Halloween, you might try un-exploring a wider range of foods, perhaps including (excluding?) wheat. On the other hand, you might look around your family tree to see if there are any interesting food or other sensitivities, and try experimenting with avoiding those things.
Condolences also for having such a snarky neurologist. Some try to help their patients in every way possible; some prefer to paint themselves into narrow little mindsets.
— Posted by Ken_K

(Note from Header - I've seen four different neurologists...keep searching until you find a good one who doesn't just shove drugs down your throat. It's fine to try different medications, but make sure the neuro cares about you, warns you of possible side effects and frequently schedules checkups to make sure your body is functioning!)

Check out the blog link for the post and tons of comments!