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Post  Mini on Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:01 am

A friend asked me recently to decribe to her, in detail, how my pain feels.

I was very glad that she asked, since not many people want to know how we actually feel, therefore they have no idea how many different kind of pain we suffer. There are different shades of migraine and therefore we do not always behave, as other people expect.

Some migraines we can cope with, some not. Some prevent us from doing anything, some make it possible to function, but we must take care all the same.

She was surprised to see me looking quite normal, and doing normal things, whilst at the same time I was telling her that I have quite troublesome, lingering migraine.

So, I explained to her where it hurt (dull constant ache at the back of my head in this case) and that this killed my appetite, so I cannot face any food, even though we met for lunch.

I also mentioned that smells made it worse. We were in the pub in the country and the fields are full of rape in full flower at the moment, so I said that I prefered to stay inside despite lovely warm weather, otherwise pain will start thumping all over my head, and it will get much, much worse.
I was grateful that I was given a chance to explain why I behave like this.
She understood, and she was very supportive. It felt good that my friendy wanted to know how I feel.
I wish more people asked to describe the pain we feel - not because I want them to feel sorry for me, but I want a chance to explain why at times I am irritable, or impatient, or cannot do certain things.
Do people ever want to know how you are feeling, where is your pain? How does it feel?

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Post  Sara79 on Sat Apr 23, 2011 8:35 am

DH will ask, so that he can try to rub my head without hurting me more...my pain depends on the migraine. Right now, I an very photophobic...I'm in the house with the blinds shut, no lights on, and wearing a pair of sunglasses. Light, even mild light feels like when the eye doctor looks at my retina.

The top of my head feels too tight, like it wants to stretch and can't, which aches and makes my head hurt, so I look like I've got Einstein's hair. Behind my right eye I've got a knot or tangle in my head...I feel like if I could untangle it I'd feel better. and of course the pain has my shoulders and the back of my neck in a tight painful throbbing that stretching and heat or cold won't fix.

And my stomach's rolling. I feel like that point in a stomach flu where you almost wish you would throw up, because then at least the nausea would go away, but I know that it won't even if I did, and if I did I'd be losing expensive and limited medications.

Not every migraine is like this, but this is my current episode.

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Post  Mini on Sat Apr 23, 2011 3:12 pm

Sara, this is a really vivid, and great descrition of migraine - I can realte to that specially about the top of the head that wants to stretch and also the tightness at the back of the neck- I know that feeling so well.

I have described it sometimes that it feels as if my brain is too big for my scull, like it wants to break theorugh the bones, becasuee there is not enough room in my head.

My head is not too bad today, and I hope that yours is also getting much better already.
Have a nice painfree Easter!
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Post  living on Mon Apr 25, 2011 6:23 pm

I'm constantly surprised by hearing that people have migraines in the backs of their heads mini! I always thought we would all have them in the same place lol! Mine are in my eyes and my temples. I have never had a migraine that was anywhere else! Isn't that bizarre. Totally in one specific place. It's either in my right eye and outer orbit/temple (that's the bad pain one) or my left eye and outer orbit/templ (that's the lesser pain but worse nausea one). Because of this (I think) I am light sensitive all the time pretty much and have to wear sunglasses to avoid triggering migraines. I don't know if it's just a coincidence - the pain in the eye and light sensitivity thing. If I was to describe the feeling of light, it's like a virtual stab wound. I can feel it enter my eye and hit something that triggers a cascade of reactions. Particular types of light - intense beams more than diffuse light. Light makes me angry!

My migraine pain is like a drilling knotty relentless unceasing sort of pain. I don't understand the stretching sensation that you guys have talked about. I don't have that. My pain also doesn't pulsate like all the migraine information tells me it should - it does twist around a bit if that makes sense. But it is unilateral. I think it's the long duration that is the problem for me. If it only lasted for 3 or 4 hours I wouldn't bat an eyelid, but it goes for 3 days. I am very fortunate not to experience vomiting and can often get away without even having nausea too badly. I can't use the eye that the migraine is in and walk around with the eye closed or my hand over it. I will use ice packs to distract me from the relentlessness of the pain. It's never 10/10 and probably in my right eye it's 7/10 on average and in my left eye 6/10 - but with nausea.

Does anyone else get the eye ones?

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Post  Brenda on Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:56 pm

Yes, most of mine are located behind my eye or under my eyebrow. I have had them other places, though, including the back of my head. I've also had times where I had migraine on both sides of my head at one time, but that's not my norm. My pain is kind of hard for me to explain. I've got a constant background pain with very intense searing throbbing pains overriding the steady pain, if that makes sense. Sometimes I feel like if I could just rip my eyeball out maybe it would stop the pain. Yes, I know it wouldn't, but I'm not always rational in the throws of a head banger (my term for severe migraine.)

I also have the sensitivity to light and my sense of hearing gets "supercharged." I know this because I like to have very low background noise on to help distract me from focusing on the pain. Normally, I'll put on mindless TV show. I'll have it on so I can hear it fine, but not loud enough to cause the pain to worsen. When the migraine is over, the sound that was perfectly understandable to me in the attack, I wouldn't be able to hear at all when I 'm well. Guess I get superman ears during attacks. lol

I frequently get wicked nausea with migraines. Sometimes they make me throw up, sometimes they just make me think I will. That is the only part of my migraines that has gotten better as I've aged. When I was a teen or in my 20's I'd throw up repeatedly EVERY migraine. Sometimes 9-10 times. I'm thankful that doesn't happen as much anymore because throwing up always intensifies the pain a LOT for me. I'm not one of the lucky few who feels better afterward. I've been freqently told by other ppl with migraines to make myself throw up to make it go away. I could never understand that.
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Post  Sara79 on Tue Apr 26, 2011 5:39 pm

Mini wrote:Sara, this is a really vivid, and great descrition of migraine - I can realte to that specially about the top of the head that wants to stretch and also the tightness at the back of the neck- I know that feeling so well...

Thank you. I was inspired by a friend who sent me her migraine blog link...she has the stroke style where she loses her speech, and the way she put it was just so true and amazing. I'd link you'll to it, but IDK how public she wants it, even if she is putting it on the internet Cool

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Post  sailingmuffin on Wed Apr 27, 2011 6:23 pm

Hi All,

Intersting questions. It is sometimes hard for me to put into words exactly how the pain feels, but I will take my best shot.

My migraines are global and encompass all of my head. My head feels heavy-like it weighs more than it should. The head pain is sharp, achey, and always "there". In some ways, it feels like there is a tornado or strong storm in my head- mixing everything up, crossing wires which cause auras, aphasia and migranous alexia and it gets worse as the pain increases. On the worst days, when the storm is raging, it is nearly impossible to control the pain. It is like thinking through a brick wall constantly.

Pain free days,
sailingm
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Post  Migrainegirl on Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:14 pm

Mine either feel like a clamp around my head- as if I'm wearing a metal hat that is a size too small, or it feels like there is an icepick poking through my left eyeball that just won't stop.

And every thing is way too loud, like the volume got turned all the way up, so I can't hardly focus on what anyone is saying. I just hear the noise.
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Post  Tomble on Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:21 pm

Mine turns up as a pain above my eye, usually the right one. There is a simultaneous pain where my wisdom teeth used to be on that side too, and before I had them removed I was certain that this was causing the pain. The eye pain makes me want to pull my eye out or press just above my eyeball.

I think of the pain as a 'dry' pain, not as in dry eyes but it's the only word I can find that describes it, although it doesn't seem to make sense. The pain throbs, and gets worse if I am active. I am very fortunate in that the pain is not very intense. My sister and mother both experience very painful migraines.

This is usually accompanied by a stiff neck feeling, and I also sometimes get the painful scalp feeling where my hair seems to hurt.

Knowing it's a migraine has helped me deal with it a lot better as I know it's going to go away. I can keep functioning at work although I feel like I'm at about 50% of regular capacity.

Before I realised what was happening I despaired over the fact that some days I would wake up feeling like I'd been drinking all night - headachey, a bit sick, tired etc - and have no reason for it.

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Post  sunnyrobin on Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:45 pm

I wonder how many of us that have migraine, also have a stiff and tight neck and shoulders all the time? I had some severe episodes of scotoma along with the regular head symptoms and my r.n. husband used pressure point therapy on my neck, shoulders, and hairline area and the symptoms got about 90 percent better. I had a chiropractor tell me once that if your neck and shoulders are hard and tight (called wooden shoulders by a physiatrist ) they can put pressure on the brain stem and cause ocular and other brain symptoms. My husband uses gently trigger point pressure each day on my sore areas and the events and symptoms lessen quite a bit.
Just food for thought-best wishes! Very Happy
Sunny

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Post  sailingmuffin on Wed Aug 10, 2011 6:19 am

Hi All,

Mine encompass the entire head. On the worst days, it kind of feels like some has taken an electric mixer (like one you would use for cakes and such} to my brain.

If I am asked to describe it briefly- sharp, achey and always "there".

It is impossible to describe it completely, but y'all, as always, get it.

Pain free days

Sailingm
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Post  Kate on Fri Aug 12, 2011 3:31 pm

The average for me is behind my eye balls and back of my head(I get that heavy head feeling too). At different times I get them in other areas and sometimes it is my entire head.

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Post  k8ate on Fri Aug 12, 2011 4:13 pm

Hi fellow migraine-sufferers,
On Thursday, I awoke at 3 am and took my head off the pillow and sat up to massive pounding throbbing throughout the forehead and top of the head. Starts with total skull pounding, shifted to both sides of the head, localized in the temple- 2 knives are stabbing me in both temples....then it shifts to one side only, and gets worse. Later, it descends into my neck and shoulders, like claws digging into my flesh. The vomiting WITH the head pounding is always fun combo! Wink

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Post  k8ate on Fri Aug 12, 2011 4:46 pm

[ My husband uses gently trigger point pressure each day on my sore areas and the events and symptoms lessen quite a bit.
Just food for thought-best wishes! Very Happy
Sunny[/quote]

I am so jealous! I have no husband and no boyfriend to touch my trigger points, but when my last BF did massage my neck for me, it helped so very much. In my area (No. CA), you can get 5 min chair massages, and I will do that IF my pain is not too bad and I can go outside in the light.

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Post  Mini on Sat Aug 13, 2011 1:27 am

Thank you very much to everyone, for your descriptions of pain. It has been most interesting to read your entries. Although I must say it breaks my heart to read about your suffering, becasue it also sounds so familiar, so horrible.
It also makes me feel better to know, that my own strange symptoms are not that unusual.

Although we all have slightly different symptoms and areas affected, much of it sound familiar to most us, becasue at one time or another we have experinced various kind of pain. At least I have.

I know that my pain has been changing over the years, but I have experinced most of what you describe, over a lifetime of pain.

I have also learned to deal with it better, in terms of medicine management, and the way I talk to doctors etc. so it is now easier to bear. I have also learned to accept the inevitable after years of raging and fighting, since any stress makes it worse.
But this condition has seriosuly affected my way of life and my social life since we never know where, and how, it can strike.

I would also like to welcome K8ate here, I am so glad you joined us - even if I am not glad that you had reason to (if you know what I mean).
Thanks again that you took trouble to write - it has been most interesting.
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Post  k8ate on Sat Aug 13, 2011 10:19 pm

Mini,
thanks for the nice welcome. I am so glad I found you guys! I don't know why I waited so long to find a migraine website, but I am glad I did...everyone is so helpful to each other Smile

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Post  Matilda on Mon Aug 22, 2011 6:58 am

I always hate migraines that come on when I am asleep. I take painkillers in my dream and then nothing happens.
I always can't understand why the painkillers don't work until I become conscious enough to realise that I actually haven't taken any painkillers - I only dreamed that I did.

My pain is mostly one-sided in my temples and back of my neck. The pain is always stabbing and makes me want to throw up.
Even after taking painkillers it doesn't completely fix it, it just makes it ache and throb instead.

I think if you drink a cold drink too fast and get a "Head Freeze" that is sort of the level of pain my migraines are. But instead of lasting for a minute it can last for days at a time.

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Post  Greeneyes on Wed Aug 24, 2011 7:23 am

My migraine is almost always on the left side of my head and eye..occassionally, it goes to the right.

The pain has varied over all these year..when I was first diagnosed I described it like someone was holding a beater up to the base of my skull..and my hair was entangled..along with a constant jackhammer feeling.

Severe nausea and vomiting..typical light/sound sensitive..hearing everything at one time..like an orchestra playing but ampliphied times ten..

Every nerve in the body is ampliphied and exagaredte..sorry, vision is bad spelling is gone at the moment..

Praying, that God will take you home to heaven..or be healed..it's relentless...and the smells..I feel like I could be used as a police dog..with my sniffer..drives me bonkers...

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Post  Mini on Wed Aug 24, 2011 4:04 pm

"I feel like I could be used as a police dog".
Greeneyes, I have been told exactly that, when I complain about the faintest of smells that no one else can smell from distance away.
Just like you say, all our senses become ultra sensitive: sight, hearing, even touch since everything irritates and makes the pain worse.

Mine are also mainly on the left side and at the back of my scull, but these things change over the years.
This summer is not very good for me with lots of changeable weather here in UK.

Matilda, I also hate those dreams that I have a bad h/ache and then I wake up (moaning) to realise that I have a real one. I hate, hate, hate that.
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Post  LyLy on Wed Aug 31, 2011 1:17 am

I can relate with what so many of you have described. Mine are always on the front right. A lot of the time, it starts behind my right eye and I get an overwhelming feeling of fatigue and then the throbbing starts. My brain throbs so much that it feels like its going to throb out of my skull! There are times where I feel stabbing pain, sometimes they feel like big shape knives at the top of my head, other times I would describe them as tiny needles deep inside my head. Everything is too loud and too bright, smells are too strong and I feel very irritable.

Its a pain that never really goes away. Its like a black cloud that follows me. I might feel well for a day, maybe two but I know M is always behind me and will strike again at any moment. As soon as I am feeling better, another one gets started. I haven't felt 100% well in weeks. Its never really gone, I live with it every day, its a chronic lifelong disease and its NOT "just a headache."

I feel like the people around me don't understand the magnitude of my migraines. I really wish more of my friends and family would take the time to just ask me and care enough to want to understand.

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Post  Mini on Sat Sep 03, 2011 4:23 am

LyLy, I was very moved by your description of migraine:
"Its like a black cloud that follows me. I might feel well for a day, maybe two but I know M is always behind me and will strike again at any moment."

It is so true that "presence" of M, that knowledge that we are never free of it that M can strike at any time, afftects every aspect of our lives.

WE are never free of it, since we are not free to make any arrangements, or commit to anything in case we will have to cancel, or will need to leave unexpectedly.
That fear of letting other people down, that fear of the unbearable pain shutting us away from leading a normal life again, and again, affects all of us very deeply.

This is what people cannot understand.
I have tried in the past to print some threads and to show them to some of my friends to help them understand, that I am not the only person who feels like that, that this is what M is like and it helped quite a lot, but I must admit that sometimes people forget.

Still it might be worth for you to print this, or some other threads here and showing them to some of your friends, or people at work, or even family to help them see what you are going through and to make them see what you are dealing with. I do hope this helps.

One thing is certain: we understand exactly what you mean, we know what it feels like, so I hope you visit us more often. You are very welcome.
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Post  Migrainegirl on Sat Sep 03, 2011 8:23 pm

Every nerve in the body is ampliphied and exagaredte

This to me is one of the weirdest parts, and the most difficult to explain to others. I feel like my nerve endings are just raw and on high alert. Any little movement is amplified times 10.
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