What you're experiencing is common to many of us. Migraines are related to the blood flow in your head, so anything you do that affects that blood flow will have an impact on the pain. Physical exertion and bending over are classic.
Are you taking anything for the headache? After 6 weeks you might have crossed over into rebound headaches if you're taking NSAIDs or acetaminophen on a daily basis. Googling 'rebound headache' will give you a better explanation than I could ever write.
I hope you've had your doctor appointment by now. If not, take it easy and be gentle with yourself until you get this under control. Eat good foods, limit sugars, and drink plenty of water And maybe some things are worth the pain, if you know what I mean.
We are very similar in our triggers. I was out at a community event today and got a surprise flash of glaring sunlight in my eyes, someone had lifted a shiny pan lid that reflected the sun, and was instantly in migraine pain. I carry my meds and was able to calm it down enough to drive home. But I get tired of missing fun because of the stupid headaches.
What resources do you have for medical care for yourself? And for help with the children? You have some unusual stuff there, and I'd recommend getting checked by a doctor or another med professional. Can you get to a clinic?
The first thing to mention is that taking Excedrin and naproxen every day can actually be a problem and cause rebound headaches. Try to get away from that daily dosing.
What are the side effects that you experience with the Imitrex? Some of us get a heavy feeling pressing against the chest, but it releases after awhile. If you can tolerate the side effects and use a full Imitrex pill it might help, but it doesn't work for everybody.
The sensitivity to light, sound, and smells are classic symptoms of migraine headaches. You'll learn which soaps, shampoos, candles, etc, you can tolerate. If it's bad enough you might buy new lamps, light fixtures, or lightbulbs.
Maybe not quit smoking now, but certainly cut back some. When you smoke it affects the blood vessels in a way that will contribute to a migraine developing, or getting worse if you already have one. I know that because I've been a smoker and had to quit because of its impact on the migraines. You've probably already experienced the pain increase with a smoke, mine was the occasional little zigzag white pain across the left eye. Okay, enough about that.
Work with your neurologist and keep notes about what works and what doesn't. It might take awhile but you'll probably come up with a lifestyle and maybe meds that will allow you to have a manageable life.
Remember that you can change to a different doctor if this one doesn't fit you, but you should give her (and her staff) a fair chance to figure it out. Sometimes front desk people have a tough job, they get pulled in so many directions. Maybe spend a few seconds asking how their day is going and chat for a bit?
I hope your headaches decrease and you can go back to your life again.
Thank you for writing this, you must be so happy to have such tremendous relief from your migraines. It's always nice to hear when someone has good results from treatment. I haven't needed Botox, but if my meds start failing I may try it someday.
Are you also Makenzismom? I think you are, so I'll answer that way. I found an earlier post about your hospital stay.
It's pretty common to have to wait weeks or months to see a neurologist, so you'll have to hang on for awhile. Please don't get too upset about all of this, that might feed some of the migraine.
Do you know a GOOD massage person? The right one might be able to work your neck shoulders and head, gently, and quiet down some of the tension. You can also use a cold pack on your forehead or neck to soothe. Some people prefer a warm damp washcloth. (For bad ones I use cool on forehead and warm on back of neck, at the same time.)
Can I ask some questions? What are the meds you're taking, Rx and OTC? You mentioned Imitrex in one of the posts. Can you tell me how you take it, such as when, how much, and how often? How about Advil or any of its NSAID cousins? You don't want to take too much of any of them.
Did she give you any other instructions, such as something to do or avoid doing?
I'll try to help get this one settled down, and hope that other people will also chime in with advice. Mostly, try not to worry too much. You might be one of the lucky ones who have one nasty round of headaches, and then poof! Gone forever!
Those symptoms can definitely be migraine related. Is this new, and that's why it's weird and confusing? It sounds like you're working with a good doctor. Over time you will develop trust in her/him and then you might get more comfortable with everything.
Get some supplements for the B and D deficiencies, those will help a lot.