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Have you have got your Christmas shopping done yet? Luckily I was able to all in one trip which was a huge relief because I shopping is not the same for me anymore and I really hate to have to take multiple shopping trips if I don’t have to. I love hanging out with people when I shop but it’s the same experience for me because there is so many potential triggers in stores so all I am thinking about is how fast can I get out of this is store? Shopping for a migraineur can be difficult because not everyone has the same triggers and when you don’t experience this type of pain it can be difficult knowing what is triggering for your friends since it’s not all black and white. Everyone wants to get something that their friends will love which they proably will but maybe not if that person has severe pain that is triggered by the gift you bought. Finding the perfect gift that won’t trigger a migraine attack can be a struggle for some people so in this post I am going to give some good and bad ideas that will for sure be a hit and migraineurs will love and cherish forever!
Things Migraineurs Will Love:
Pillows- When you have a chronic illness or a migraine disorder you have a love/hate relationship with sleep. Some weeks you may sleep eight to ten hours a night while other weeks you could average two to three. If I had a dollar for every time I struggled with sleep I would have a lot of dollars so it is always a good idea to get someone who has a chronic illness or migraine disorder some pillows because although you can’t take away the pain that is causing insomnia you can make them more comfortable so it’s easier to fall asleep.
White noise machines– When you have a migraine disorder it is pretty common to struggle with sleep and want to go to sleep at the most random times but it’s not always easy to fall asleep because sometimes when you are trying to rest people around you are just getting their night started! Sleep deprivation is one of the biggest migraine triggers and although you can’t make someone stop talking so you can rest what you can do is invest in a white noise machine so your able to block out some of the extra noise and fall asleep easier. Personally I don’t sleep well with white noise but am awakened by it so this would not be a good gift for me and I sleep better by just putting my portable fan on full blast.
Migraine relief cap- Migraine relief caps found on Amazon may not be the most attractive thing in the world but can provide you some relief during an attack. Migraine relief caps give you a cooling effect and can help lessen the pain of a migraine. It looks kind of goofy but try and not think about the appearance of it too much but . When I am wearing things that looking silly that I know will give me relief I always tell myself I either can take these off and me in pain or don’t and get relief. Your choice!
Essentials oils–If you are having a migraine attack turning on your essential oil diffuser will not get rid of it because at that point it’s too late and the only way to control migraine pain is to prevent it. Essential oils like peppermint oil will not kill your migraine pain but what it will do is give you a cooling effect and maybe lessen the pain. Use it regularly because although there is no research that indicates it helps with migraine pain research does say it can help with the frequency of headaches and mild head pain. Don’t wait until your pain get severe and start using your peppermint oil at the first sign because you might be able to dodge severe pain if you catch it early enough! I am never in dire need of esssential oils because I never let myself run out of them so you can always get me essential oils and be pretty sure I’ll eventually use them!
Movies/crafts- When you have a bad migraine day recovery looks different for everyone. Some people are able to sit and work on their computer without a problems while other people can barely function. For the people that can’ acutally work during a migraine attack I would really love to know how you work that because all I am doing during an attack is trying to sleep! When you are having a migraine attack you don’t alway have pain but sometimes you don’t have any head pain at all which is why so many doctors don’t understand migraines because everyone is so different. Recovery from an attack in my experience can take from hours to up to a week which can get pretty boring if you are in too much pain to sit and do any work. Movies or crafts is a excellent gift idea to get migraineurs during these tough times to help distract us from the pain and pass the time.
Bath soap/self-care items- Selfcare is so important especially on bad pain and so many of us often neglect it until we are forced to focus on self-care making it ten times more difficult to recover from a bad pain day. You can only neglect self-care for so long and if you don’t pick a don’t to relax and focus on yourself your body will choose one for you so it’s so important that we priotize self-care espiecally if you have chronic pain. Bath soaps or self-care are a really good idea because often migraineurs or chronic pain sufferers need these things to recover from bad pain days so we can never have enough of it!
Things That Are Not The Best Idea:
Perfume/scented products- Perfume or scented products are a common migraine trigger and for some people, it’s not an issue but for others it is and you should not buy them any perfume or lotion that is scented because it will trigger an attack. I don’t buy scented products because I am triggered my certain smells but also I have really sensitive skin and will break out in hives with some lotions so I have to be super careful. Essential oils are the closest thing I can come to anything that is scented because they are only as strong as you want to make them so unless it’s that I will probably not use it and just end up regifting it because as much as I want to I can’t handle scented products.
Food items- Sometimes I will be surrounded by so much food but will still struggle to find something to eat because I have so many foods that are potential triggers. It is not so much of a problem when I am home alone and can make whatever I want and usually is only an issue when I go to events and have to find something to eat because I know it will be my only meal and I have no choice. Gifting a migraineur sweets or any food in general is not typically a good idea unless you know their triggers and are positive you are gifting them something that isn’t that. I do okay with sweets but I do have to watch how much I consume because if I go to crazy with it I will trigger pain so it would never be a good idea to give me large quantities of chocolate even though I do love chocolate and could eat an impressive amount of it if I let myself!
Alcohol- Why you would ever think that getting anyone with a migraine or headache disorder alcohol would be a good idea baffles my mind but I guess if you have never experienced migraine pain you might just think this is a mind gesture. Not everyone is triggered is by alcohol and for most people, a bottle of wine would be a great gift idea but for people with chronic migraine or chronic illness maybe not because there is a high probability they won’t be able to handle it. I had migraines sometimes a sugary drink like Sangria would cause my heart to race a little but nothing too serious and now I can’t even handle it. About a year ago I completely gave up alcohol because it makes pain so bad I can’ barely move that it’s not even worth it and it’s one of the best things I ever did because since doing that I have less attacks, especially at family events which is when I would have a majority of my attacks.
Coffee- Have you tried drinking a cup of coffee? This is one of the most common things people tell me or migraineurs in general when they are having an attack that’s it’s to the point I don’t talk about my pain with others. Please don’t tell migraineurs to drink more coffee during an attack because according to experts this is not the cure and does not always will it help but for some people, it could make it worse. The way to help someone’s migraine pain is to prevent them and for some people that may be limiting caffeine or avoiding it altogether. Coffee sometimes helps me if I am having mild pain but not so much on high pain days when I can barely move and those are the day I have to seriously watch how much I consume. Coffee can be hit or miss for some people so before you buy any make sure you know if that person can tolerate it because some people cannot and will just give it away!
Buying gifts for migraineurs can be difficult because there are so many different types of migraines and not everyone will be triggered by the same things. I know some some people that get migraines that are clearly not triggered by scents because they are practically bathing in their perfume and if you had these triggers you would not be wearing it or going near people who was wearing a lot of strong scents. Perfumes can give a lot of people anxiety but is not a trigger for everyone and wear as much perfume as they want without triggering an attack. Not everyone who has migraine attacks needs medication and sometimes you can get relief naturally with a few lifestyle changes but if you do need them that’s okay because there is nothing you should be ashamed of. It is stressful to live with a migraine or headache disorder but if you learn your triggers and educate you families of them it will be less stressful because you will have more migraine free days. What good and bad gifts do you think are good to get migraineurs? Please leave your ideas in the comments below because I would love to hear them!
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Thanks for understanding!