NB: This post is not intended to give any medical advice or opinion. If you are affected by any of the issues raised, I would advise going to see your GP.
Caring for yourself is vital when you have a chronic illness. Self Care doesn’t always mean simply caring for your mind. It means caring for your body too.
There are lots of things you can do to care for your body. This will include eating healthily, drinking plenty of water and exercising. Eating healthily doesn’t just mean eating the right food. It means making sure you get enough food without eating too little or too much. It’s a fine balance.
Self Care when you have a chronic illness also involves getting the right healthcare. Which is why I felt the need to visit the doctor yesterday.
My mood has been low recently and I’ve been having a lot more headaches recently. I’ve mentioned before that I suffer from Cluster Headaches. (CH) Back in February, the doctor put me on Propranalol for the headaches and last week, the locum doctor doubled my dose. I was put on that mostly because I can’t take many of the specific migraine medications because of the other medications I’m on. Triptans tend to react badly with many antidepressants and antipsychotics. Unfortunately, I’m on those antidepressants. There is another medication, you can take but that reacts badly with Tapentadol. As you can see, I’m stuffed!
The problem is that the CH has been getting worse and worse! A friend told me on Sunday that I looked better than I did the Sunday before when I went home from our meeting halfway because the headache was so bad. Then, I had another headache at the meeting and went to hide out the back and someone came into the room who had perfume on and I thought I was going to be sick! I had to find somewhere else to hide!
But there is one thing I can take. Topiramate. According to the NHS advice website:
Topiramate is a type of medication originally developed to prevent seizures in people with epilepsy, but is now much more commonly used in migraine. It’s been shown to help prevent migraines and is usually taken every day in tablet form.
According to Great Ormond Street Hospital, it is also safe for use by children. That’s always a bonus! Anyway, I took my first dose last night. I’ll let you know how it goes.
I also spent about five minutes ranting at the doctor about my mood. I sometimes wonder how much the CH are causing my low mood and how much my low mood is affecting the CH. It’s sort of a catch-22. I like my GP. He listens to me and understands when I’m depressed. He also lets me rant about what’s bugging me. He listens to me and doesn’t mind if I complain. He also tells me straight when I need it. And tells me to rest when I need to.
I’m glad I got a lot off my chest so I feel like I can cope until my appointment with the psychiatrist next month. Although when I got home, I found out my Botox appointment for Thursday has been cancelled. I think I can feel a phone call to the face doctor’s secretary coming on today!