I got my first migraine about ten years ago. Before that, I had only had one headache, so I didn’t even know it was a migraine. I’m not sure what brought the first one on, but as the years went by, I kept getting them more frequently and more intensely. Eventually, a physician moved into an apartment I was renting, and brought me very expensive samples of a medication called Maxalt that would get rid of the pain in minutes. When he moved out, I tried getting my personal physician to prescribe the medication. He did with no problem. But the meds were 45 dollars a pill. I asked him to prescribe a generic medication. Those were barely effective and were 23 dollars a pill. Migraines are costly. Most of the time, I would opt to bite the bullet, get in a dark room, put ice and compression on my head and face for a couple of hours, which relieved the simplest headaches. The harsher ones would last for two to three days. I can say without a doubt that, though my life was great in all other ways, the migraines leached much joy and happiness from my life.
Years ago, I used to trade for a lot of services. I put an advertisement on Craigslist to trade voice lessons for yard work. I got a call from a guitarist who wanted to learn to sing better in exchange to cut my grass weekly. We became buddies. I shared with him about my headaches. I told him that hypnosis was helping. He explained that his wife had a disease called TN, which stands for Trigeminal Neuralgia. It is estimated that 1 in 15,000 people in the US suffer from TN. This disease stems from impeding the blood flow to the trigeminal nerve, which covers the face and goes into the neck and top of the head, behind the eyes and into the cheek bones. Sometimes, this nerve can be literally choked by a blood vessel in the face. This kind of TN actually can be cured. But the result is still phantom fear of the exhausting pain of this disease, which, in most cases, goes above and beyond the pain scale of 1-10 for most diagnosed patients.
I thought maybe I was one of those unlucky 15,000 as my migraines were happening at a rate of 3-4 in a week. I went to a neurologist. My diagnosis was simply that I was a migraneur, one who gets migraines frequently. The neurologist’s decided to try treating me with betablockers, which made me feel like I was having a heart attack. After the doctor told me to deal with the symptoms of my heart racing for two weeks, I decided he had no clue that I felt like I was going to crawl right out of my body. I took myself off of the medicine and began to research the problem myself.
Jesus says in the Christian bible “Physician, heal thy self!” I have a feeling that the Christ spoke directly to me. I prayed incessantly for direction and help. What possibly could be causing someone who practices yoga daily, eats perfectly healthy food, and has never been more than 10 lbs. overweight my entire life. What the hell could I be doing that is causing these problems?
I go back to my grass-cutting friend’s wife who had TN. She actually had an operation to relieve the symptoms of her pain, but was left with an issue called Sensory Defensiveness. You can search my blog at www.findingauthenticyou.com for much more information about Sensory Defensiveness, because I’ve covered it many times. I discovered that this is the disease that I had.
I worked at a psychiatric hospital then as a clinical hypnotherapist. During one of the staff meetings, I asked if any of the psychiatrists, psychologists, or therapists knew what this disease was. Not one knew. The owner of the practice told me to speak to a neurologist. I think she thought I was making up the disease to appease my own thoughts about my migraines. Almost every diagnosis in a psychiatric environment tends to be looked as imaginary or stemming from some kind of childhood pain.
After my intense research, I recognized that my neural pathways in my brain were simply firing too quickly. I also realized that any common stimuli was becoming simply too strong for my body. My brain would try to fight off perfumes, which made my stomach sick; the smell of cigarette smoke, which made me lose my voice; bright lights, which gave me a headache; sitting in front of the computer for more than an hour, which made my neck ache. Even simple touch sometimes would be too harsh. I also noticed that when the weather became overcast, I was, also, way more prone to getting a headache. All of these stimuli, if continued, eventually would cause my body to shut down with a migraine. So, the only thing I could do was try to prevent the obvious problems that caused the migraines, not including weather, of course. Added to that, I also noticed that becoming gluten free helped relieve a great deal of my joint pain and took away toxicity from my body, leaving me with a lot less migraine triggers.
Today, I don’t live migraine free, but I have had fewer and fewer migraines every year, do to understanding the simple truth of sensory defensiveness. You can help your problem with headaches, too, by simplifying your life, going gluten free, wearing sunglasses, wearing ankle weights (which disturb the neural pathways triggering headaches), brushing your body with a baby brush when symptoms begin, and rocking your body or your legs when you sit.
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* Bo Sebastian is a Hypnotherapist and Life & Health Coach, available for private sessions to QUIT SMOKING, Lose Weight, New Lap-Band Hypnosis for Weight Loss, CHANGE YOUR MIND, CHANGE YOUR LIFE! at 615-445-8861 or http://bosebastian.com/Home_Page.php Please feel free to comment and/or sign up to receive your blog sent to you directly or stream with an RSS Feed. Please spread the word by liking the page or sharing this with your friends.
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