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low-grade constant headaches

topic posted Fri, February 4, 2005 - 10:51 AM by  amers
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so...not a migraine, but i have been having low-grade headaches from the time i wake up for almost the whole day on & off for about 3 months now.

i also get migraines, but on a less regular occasion. i stay away from my triggers, go to the chiropracter on a regular basis, quit smoking recently...but am still in pain.

i've finally given in, and decided i may need meds to combat this. i have appointment at local hmo next week, and was wondering if anyone else gets these and if they had any success with traditional meds. my hmo is mostly about internal medicine. so if anyone else has this prob and has remedied it in some way, i sure would love to know!!!! :)
posted by:
amers
Sacramento
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  • Re: low-grade constant headaches

    Fri, February 4, 2005 - 1:05 PM
    I almost always have some form of headache, and they turn into full blown migraines on cycles. Sometimes I'll have a nasty migraine every two to three days.

    I haven't found anything that works yet, but you might want to consider having your neck imaged; we think part of the problem I'm having is related to bone spurs.

    Good luck!
  • Re: low-grade constant headaches

    Fri, February 4, 2005 - 1:28 PM
    I've had a headache every day since I can remember. There have been 3 times in my life when I haven't, once when we went to Vermont, once when I was 12 after taking some heavy drugs, and after the first time I took Imitrex.

    I always have a headache around a 2-3. I'm used to it. When they get to 8-9 is when I actually get irritated by it.
  • Re: low-grade constant headaches

    Mon, February 7, 2005 - 10:02 AM
    i've had chronic daily headache for six years now. low-grade, sometimes as soon as when i wake up, usually by noon, almost always by 1 or 2pm if i don't do something to counteract them.

    my cdh *is* a form of migraine. i have several migraine indicator symptoms, including severe sensitivity to light, sensitivity to noise, and a positive reaction to caffeine. i don't get an aura, and i only get nausea once every few months, when i have a very serious headache.

    i have been to dozens of doctors and tried a bunch of therapies and diets. i haven't done any meds. my next step is homeopathy, and i also am going to see a second ear, nose, and throat doctor who specializes in sinuses.

    mine are somewhat under control now, after years of being totally unmanagable. but i'm taking way more over-the-counter drugs than i'd like, and i still can't do everythin i want with my life on a day-to-day basis.

    i'm interested in talking to others about this and comparing notes. and amy, if you have are looking for a list of things to try or things to think about, let me know and we can talk.
    • Re: low-grade constant headaches

      Wed, February 9, 2005 - 1:39 PM
      I've been doing acupuncture with a licensed acupuncturist and homeopath. We're focusing on my irritable bowel syndrome which seems to be the source of 98% of my low grade to severe migraines.

      Try keeping a migraine journal. I know it sounds trite, but it really does help. Also, when you write down your dates and times of your migraines, make sure to write down what you ate.

      It helps! Really! It really really helps! :)
      • Re: low-grade constant headaches

        Thu, February 10, 2005 - 4:03 PM
        migraine journals are laughably difficult when you have an ebb and flow of headaches that doesn't stay constant throughout the day. i remember when i kept one i would sit down at the end of the day and try to remember when it came and left each day.

        e.g...'woke at 8 with small one behind right eye, left by 9am, back behind both eyes by noon, worse after lunch, mostly gone by 4, back again behind right eye by 7 or 8(?), full-blown by bedtime.'

        the journal was a mess :P

        and then when you add allll your caloric intake...whew!!

        i'm not mocking the idea--i know it's SUPER important and beth is giving good solid advice :) i just have always wanted to point this out when people told me to do it. 4-6 headaches a day, to different degrees, and overlapping, means that it's very hard to keep an accurate journal.
        • Re: low-grade constant headaches

          Thu, February 10, 2005 - 6:47 PM
          I never said it was easy, but it is helpful. I don't go into any heavy details in my journal. If it doesn't work for you it doesn't work for you. I was just talking about foods that trigger headaches, not a caloric intake. I'd sooner jump off a bridge than count calories.

          Sounds like you know what does/doesn't work for you.
          • Re: low-grade constant headaches

            Fri, February 11, 2005 - 2:49 PM
            like i said--i know it's SUPER important and good advice. i just wanted to pre-sympathize with someone who has daily headaches at the frustration one encounters when trying to complete this task.

            (and i wish i REALLY knew what works for me, yo... *sigh*)
          • Re: low-grade constant headaches

            Fri, February 11, 2005 - 4:02 PM
            i have to agree -- headache journals just don't work for me either. but, i do know what my triggers are and stay away as much as possible, or know that i will pay the consequences.

            my whole family suffers from one sort of migraine or another, so they are are a great support system for me to use to see what works/doesn't work for them. but honestly, i just normally deal with the pain rather than stick to some hardcore regimen. but the family primarily use some form of meds too, not to mention 1/2 of them are on anti-depressants too...maybe there's a correlation? i don't know.

            anways, going to the dr. monday. hopefully will get some good ideas! been thinking of visiting an acupuncturists too since its covered by my health insurance. anyone have success with that?

            and i want to agree that this tribe is very helpful, and i appreciate all of your insights!
            • Re: low-grade constant headaches

              Fri, February 11, 2005 - 5:10 PM
              i did acupuncture and herbs with a very traditional chinese practitioner for 4 solid months. i got absolutely nothing out of it. but i think accupuncture is just something you have to try for yourself and see how it goes. everyone's got a different problem to work with, you know? and needles might be the way to go for your particular set of circumstances. honestly, i really wish i had more faith in some alternative medical practices--i think they would be more likely to work. (variant of the placebo effect, see.)

              (i tried acupressure too, with even less success, but the dude i saw was ridiculous and inconsistent so i won't make any sweeping judgments...yet ;)
    • Re: low-grade constant headaches

      Thu, February 10, 2005 - 3:16 PM
      orange and all --

      i have an appt. on monday to see my doc. my sister has been taking imaprine (sp?) and says it works prety good. she also has been waking up with headaches.

      i never thought about the allergies being a factor for the cdh. but defintely comes into play as i am in sacramento which is allergy capitol 12 months a year!

      i have tried other preventative meds in the past, but didn't like the idea of always being on meds, plus they did not allow me to drink any alchohol at all, and i like to imbibe. however, i am at the point where i will be trying what i can, because the pain is getting worse. add to that i have history of aneurisms in the family... will keep you updated, but am defintiely interested in hearing more about what has worked/not worked for you all as well.
  • Re: low-grade constant headaches

    Fri, February 11, 2005 - 2:50 PM
    wanted to say--glad to see action on this tribe and this thread. i'm really glad this tribe exists and would love to be sharing ideas more regularly.

    thanks, all!
    • Re: low-grade constant headaches - update

      Sun, March 6, 2005 - 6:25 PM
      well, i went to the doc and basically she thinks i may be having rebound headaches from too much ibuprofin. go figure, i do eat it like candy sometimes.

      so, for the past few weeks i have been trying so HARD not to take any. I am also taking nortiptyln (sp?) at nite and allergy meds.

      this past week has been hell. we have had some drastic weather changes (rain/sun/rain/sun/allergies/etc.) i had a migraine last weekend that lasted for three days -- then the rest of the week, it was headache from the time i woke up until about 8 - 9 pm.

      so needles to say, i broke down and took some ibuprofen as well as imitrex. could not handle the pain. but am back on the wagon, and trying to not take it this week.

      i am thinking of checking out acupuncture -- any body got any stories to relay 'bout that and if it helps or not?
      • Re: low-grade constant headaches - update

        Mon, March 7, 2005 - 7:39 AM
        I've used acupuncture for about 2 years until my insurance began to deny my claims. I felt that it helped to reduce the frequency but I never saw a complete remission.
        About a year ago I began to experience rebound migraines from Imitrex after years of successful use. It seems after a period of time the med lost its effectiveness. I am now taking Relpax for the actual migraines and Keppra as a preventative. The frequency is down to around once a week (sometimes a little longer) and the Relpax does a pretty ok job of relieving the symptoms (though it takes longer than I would like). My girlfriend suffers from menstrual induced migraines and was having problems with ibuprofen. She started taking naproxen 2x a day about a week before her period and week during because it is a longer acting anti-inflammatory. She claims that it has made a big difference for her. I know that it’s been in the news a lot for raising blood pressure but she has regular check ups and her blood pressure has always been good so she says she 's going to keep going for it.

        If you can afford the acupuncture I would go for it. It can't hurt and it may make a difference. I know this is probably a longer response than you were looking for but thought the antidotal info may be of interest to someone here and I would like to hear others thoughts on our course of treatment.

        Good luck to you and good health to you!

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