Image via WikipediaI think I understand why people used to use it as a solution for migraine. I'm finding the idea rather appealing myself, right now.
For unknown reasons, my migraine frequency and severity has shot up this summer. After flipping through my calendar I realized I've had a migraine every day this week and over the weekend. A few of them have been ones that lasted more than a day. Others hit later in the day or afternoon after several hours of blissful normality.
This is not cool. Worse, I'm not getting good response to my usual abortive med - Excedrin. This is a bit complicated by the fact that I've had more arthritis pain lately for which I usually take naproxen which hangs around in the body for 8-12 hours during which you're not supposed to take another NSAID. Suck.
I've been using an ice pack. I've been using my Neti Pot. I've been lying down, doing gentle stretches, trying to relax. I've been trying to have pain-med free days so as not to trigger rebound headaches or medication overuse headaches.
I'm in the second month of trying butterbur extract as a preventative (obviously with no result). Unfortunately, the very hot, humid summer we're having along with lots of allergens are probably what's causing the problem and those aren't exactly triggers I can avoid without moving (which would be fine except for that whole we need jobs and a place to live thing).
This is bad enough as it is, but is now a really major problem as I've gotten a part-time job that starts next week. (Yay!) I can't really get to, let alone do said job at times when drilling a hole in my head to let the pain/demons/cerebrospinal fluid out seems like a good idea.
Nor does this ancient Egyptian remedy of tying a clay crocodile stuffed with herbs to my head seem all that appealing. Well, actually pressure plus heat or cold does help sometimes, but I suspect if there isn't already something in the dress code about that there would be after I showed up with one. (Though having rules made/added as a direct result of my actions is usually entertaining.)
In the past, I was on nortriptyline, one of the tricyclic antidepressants, for depression and discovered happily that it also prevented migraines. Unfortunately I also gained a lot of weight in a short amount of time and had some weird blood pressure issues and a few other less worrisome but mildly annoying side effects, so I switched to Cymbalta. So today I emailed my neuro and begged for help, suggesting maybe a low dose of the nortriptyline would help prevent migraine and not interact overmuch with the Cymbalta or be as likely to cause side effects. She got back to me and agreed to phone in an Rx. I'll check with my psychiatrist tomorrow to be sure they have no objection and hopefully my clever plan will succeed. It may take 1-3 weeks to really notice a difference, but that's fine. Hopefully the combo won't tip me into serotonin syndrome or cause any other nasty problems. At this point, the risk is worth it, especially since I know what to look for.
Failing that, I may well try to start a fashion for clay crocodiles as hipster head-wear.
Either way - job! Should be fairly low-stress, no one I met during my interviews seemed sociopathic, the job is done when I leave and I'll be bringing in some money to help pay down some debt and other stuff. I can do other stuff like knit while I'm there so long as it doesn't distract me too much (so, stockinette in the round) and I'm hoping I'll still have the energy to keep slowly plugging away at getting some crafts ready for sale.