Friday, June 15, 2012

5 Lessons Learned the Hard Way: Migraine Awareness Month Blogging Challenge

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I'm participating in the Migraine Awareness Month Blogging Challenge every day in June.

Today's prompt is a free blog, so I chose one of the extra prompts to write about for today: "I learned the hard way..." We learn a great many things the hard way, through experiences that are often difficult and unpleasant. Of all the things you're learned the hard way, what sticks in your mind the most?

In the nine years I've been living with chronic migraines, I've learned so many things. Most of them the hard way, through trial and error. One of the reasons I blog and work in patient advocacy is to try to save you guys the heartache I've been through in learning these lessons.

(1) See a headache/migraine specialist. Don't settle for only seeing your primary care physician or a general neurologist.

(2) Develop a large tool box of coping skills. Medication and treatments can be great, but if you don't have other options in your tool box, such as meditation, guided relaxation, aromatherapy, hobbies, distractions, etc., when your medication doesn't help, you will be screwed. See Your Chronic Pain Tool Box: Personalized Pain Management.

(3) Learn as much as you can about proposed treatments and medications before trying them so you can make an informed decision about whether the option is right for you.

(4) Don't be afraid to question doctors. You can stand up for yourself and be your own advocate and still be respectful.

(5) Trust your instincts. If something doesn't feel right, don't do it. Don't force yourself to do something your instincts are telling you not to, even if you can't quite put your finger on why.

Earn a chance to win a prize in the Somebody Heal Me Migraine Awareness Month Giveaway by commenting on this post. Learn about other ways to earn chances to win by visiting: Migraine Awareness Month Giveaway.

What lessons have you learned the hard way?

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National Migraine Awareness Month is initiated by the National Headache Foundation. The Blogger's Challenge is initiated by

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DISCLAIMER: Nothing on this site constitutes medical or legal advice. I am a patient who is engaged and educated and enjoys sharing my experiences and news about migraines, pain and depression. Please consult your own health care providers for advice on your unique situation.