When you hear someone say they get migraines, you probably think of headaches, really BAD headaches. But in fact, the symptoms associated with migraine disorders are widely varied. What can some of those symptoms feel like? It felt like my skull couldn’t accommodate the balloon that someone was blowing up inside of my head. Instead of just the sensitivity to light, I was now getting sensitivity to sound and to feeling. My headaches affected me at school because I missed a lot of the papers we were doing. It affected my playtime because when they were being loud I couldn’t play because it was too loud. And the one time that I had a migraine so severely they did not know if it was a migraine or a stroke. Very scary situation. The spinning sensation occurred whenever I moved my head. Even slight movement like this or like this. There’s a squishiness in my ear that never leaves, and I also noticed that I smell things that other people don’t smell and I taste things that are- have a odd taste to them, that are- not recognized by others.
Recently I’ve been experiencing unexplained odors. They’re very strange and they range from smells of exhaust to sweet smells of chocolate or of popcorn. I would pull into my driveway, get out of the car, and I would have a feeling that I was still moving or I would even look at the car and think maybe my car was rolling. I did recently find out that aphasia could be an aspect of this atypical migraine symptom, and my husband and I almost have a joke about it. I’ll be speaking, and I’ll just raise my eyebrows and point to him, and he’ll say the word I can’t find. I get carsick a lot and it makes my head hurt and my stomach hurt.
I’m Katey’s mother and we both suffer from migraines. I also experienced carsickness as a child. There is a family history with migraines in the family, mainly the women. I am still left with the same problems, the same ear pain, the same pressure, the same vestibular disturbance. The antibiotics did nothing. I believe I’ve seen three or four different Ear, Nose, and Throat Doctors who have sent me for X-rays, MRIs, CAT scans- I’m not sure what all tests, but they’ve all come back negative. By chance he said, “Have you tried magnesium?” First I was so surprised that he was taking me seriously, that I just started to laugh.
I started taking Nortriptyline, and that helped for a while. I’ve been on the Topamax now for 6 months and I’ve had no sinus symptoms whatsoever, and I can’t tell you how much that has changed my life. The other thing that I was really interested in was the neurophysical therapy. I did that for about 3 months and that has been to date the most effective intervention that I’ve done so far. So it got to the point where I can wear socks, I don’t have to think twice of which is the worst bra, which is the best bra.
I can actually get dressed, um, the sensitivity is I would say 95% gone. One of the things I’m learning about auditory processing disorder with migraines and other symptoms is also the fact that depression is linked with some of the symptoms. And to know that my symptoms both collaborate together and they’re really one symptom is giving hope that maybe the ear pain will go away, the ear ringing will go away, the pressure in my sinuses will go away, the headache pain will go away, and I’ll get a boost!.
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