Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Tackle It Tuesday - Migraine Relief Kit

For this week's Tackle It Tuesday post, I wanted to share with you how I made my Migraine Relief Kit and what goes in it!  I have suffered from migraines since I was a teenager and I have learned a lot about what helps relieve them when I have them.  The trouble is, once I have a migraine, I can't think or function well enough to remember all my remedies!  So I was looking at a post about a first aid kit, and I thought, why not make a Migraine Relief Kit?  Something where I can have all my migraine relief remedies all in one place? Here's my kit;

What's in it?  Below are pictures and descriptions of everything in my box.
As you can see, I have a large bottle of electrolyte water.  Often times, migraines and headaches are a sign that you are dehydrated.  I have this in my kit just in case I am out of drinking water, and to serve as a reminder to drink plenty of water once my migraine begins!
This is my favorite lotion from Bath & Body Works.  Stress Relief Hand cream.  Aromatherapy can work wonders for migraines, and rubbing some of this on my hands, neck, and shoulders can really help.  Plus, it helps remind me that some simple self-massage and reflexology can help too.  There are pressure points on your hands, feet, and neck that can help with headaches and migraines.  If you suffer from headaches or migraines I strongly suggest you learn some of these reflexology pressure points.  And this lotion is wonderfully relaxing whether you have a headache or not!

I suffer from the migraines that not only make my eyes very sensitive to light, but there is usually pounding, excruciating pain behind one of or both of my eyes.  I went looking for a sleep mask, and I found this sleep mask at Walgreens.  It has removable gel inserts that you can put in the freezer and then back into the sleep mask.  Oh that nice cool feeling on top of my eyelids, while also shielding my eyes from any light in the room.... it's really a GREAT find for migraine and headache sufferers!  I can pop the inserts into the freezer for about 5 minutes and then be ready to go!

As I mentioned before, aromatherapy can really help.  I have this bottle of eucalyptus oil in my kit to remind me to use it in my oil warmer.  For headaches I would recommend either Eucalyptus or Lavender scented oils in a diffuser.  Experiment and see what works for you, but be careful because some scents can actually trigger migraines.  Also, make sure you use pure essential oil, not perfume oil.  The "perfume" oils contain chemicals that can make your migraines worse.

My heating pad.  I made this one myself, with a fuzzy sock!  I filled the sock with a mixture of dry uncooked white rice, some eucalyptus scented Epsom salts, and some dry crushed spearmint.  I sewed the end shut with needle and thread.  When I need it I heat it up in the microwave for about two minutes and then put it behind my neck.  The heat combines with the soothing scent is so relaxing!  Migraines and headaches often come with neck and shoulder tension, so this is a must-have for a migraine relief kit!

Of course, some obvious essentials... over the counter migraine relief medication!

I found this in a little shop of natural teas and remedies.  It's a loose tea blend of chamomile, white willow bark, and a couple other herbs that are known for pain relieving.  I haven't tried it out yet, but once I try it I will let you know how it works!

I also included a couple other tea bags of my favorite soothing teas.  I have a Stash Chai Green Tea, a Stash Chai White Tea, and Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra (with valerian).  A nice soothing cup of hot tea helps me relax and fall asleep.  Plus, I often get a sour stomach and nausea with my migraines, so hot tea helps with that symptom as well.

This is another aromatherapy remedy!  This is a "Bath Tea" of a blend of herbs and essential oils.  You put it in a bath tub full of hot water and it releases the scent into the bath water.  VERY relaxing and effective!

This is some allergy medicine.  Antihistamines can help relieve a migraine.  I put these in my kit because I know it works, but I almost always tend to forget about taking them once a migraine hits!

AND, last but not least, Emergency Chocolate!  Because sometimes a migraine or headache can be caused by, or aggravated by low blood sugar.  And besides that, chocolate just makes me feel better.  If you put some chocolate in your kit, make sure it is Milk Chocolate, NOT Dark Chocolate!  Dark Chocolate is a migraine trigger, and might actually make your headache worse!

If you suffer from migraines, educate yourself on as many remedies as you can, and try to figure out what your triggers are so you can avoid them.  Common triggers are stress, dehydration, hormones, perfumes, chemicals, and some foods.  The most common foods that can trigger a migraine are; Sharp Cheeses, Dark Chocolate, Citrus fruits, and Red Wine.  You may be triggered by one or more of these things, and there may be things that trigger your migraine that are not listed here.  The best defense is to prevent the migraine by avoiding your triggers, but they can't all be avoided all the time, so maybe you will want to put together your own Migraine or Headache Relief kit to have everything in one place when they do strike!


  1. Another very common trigger is bananas. Yes, bananas. No one is certain why, but they are a definite trigger. Keeping a headache journal is essential to figuring out what you may be able to avoid for you, too. Date, and time, of course, but what you ate, and when you sleep are important, too. Adequate sleep can help stave off migraines. So can 45 minutes of daily moderate exercise. Be certain to record these, too, and also your menstrual cycle. It can help determine if the headaches are hormonal. All this information was given to me by my neurologist. I have been remiss in following some of it, but the exercise and avoiding food triggers have helped the most. Caffeine taken after a migraine comes on may help replace spinal fluid, too.

    This is a great kit, Wendy. I am going to build one almost like it. Can you tell me where to find the oils and eucalyptus leaves?

    1. Thanks for the additional info! I know mine are most commonly triggered by hormones, as I get them right before or during my menstrual cycle. I am also very sensetive to some types of perfume, sometimes just smelling it on a person I walk past in the store can trigger my migraines! and of course, sleep is a big one! I'm allergic to bananas, so I already avoid those!
      You can find essential oils online, and sometimes in a pharmacy too! I have seen them at Fry's and Walgreens. I know for high quality essential oils, look online at DoTerra. The dried spearmint that I added to my heating pad was found in a grocery store in the spice & herb section.

  2. What a great idea sis! I really like the home made heating pad!

  3. For a little over a year now my, five year old daughter has been experiencing terrible migraines. My work colleague recommended Schrier Family Chiropractic in Delray Beach. Dr. Elan was very patient and thorough in his examinations. I notice since the treatments her condition has gotten much better. Today my daughter calls him Dr. magic hands. I would definitely recommend him, check out the website www.drelan.com.

  4. Migraine is such a sever problem. I know a lot of peole suffering from migraine. The severity of symptoms rattles me. Ibuprofen, Tylenol and Imitrex, Botox are known medicines.

    Spinach, cucumber juice, carrot juice and inhalation of lavender oil are excellent home remedies to migraine headache.