Coping, Treatment

Afterglow Diminished

The glow of Tuesday’s wonderful acupuncture session dimmed after yesterday’s appointment. I went in feeling great, walked out feeling OK but a little foggy, and two hours later was hit with a bad headache. Even worse, I was visited by another migraine in the night and it was accompanied by dizziness.

It’s not like I expected acupuncture to be a miracle treatment (’cause I no longer believe in those), but it was still a letdown. It sucks that what looked so promising on Tuesday was such a disappointment on Wednesday.

It’s funny though. I am disappointed, but not devastated. I’ve accepted that I may never have a headache-free day again. I go into any treatment knowing that the odds are against me. (Don’t be too quick to label me pessimistic. It’s that I recognize the limitations of treatments and accept whatever the outcome may be. Really.) My hopes weren’t too high to begin with.

But now that I’ve glimpsed my former energetic, clear-thinking self, I want her back. Having the goal just out of reach and it’s success out of my control is frustrating. It’s exciting too because now I know that my body still holds the possibility.

7 thoughts on “Afterglow Diminished”

  1. Actually acupuncture is not the best for headaches. It is acupuncture with very gentle and specific massage on the shoulder and neck muscles combined with very specific acupuncture. I treat many patients with headaches and migraines and only once I had feedback that someone would become worse after the treatment.

    There was also a study on botox being injected into acupuncture points. A great idea. A little risky, but still great clinical thinking. Botox both relaxed the muscles and stimulated acupuncture points to achieve a great long lasting pain relief.

    There are good studies to show that acupuncture alone can achieve good results for headaches:

    Thanks for all the information!


  2. Have you ever been treated with steroids? I went to the ER Saturday when the 12 day headache became unbearable (yes, a 10!), doctor there said Status Migrainous (which I had never heard mentioned), and said the treatment is usually hospitalization and steroids to break the headache cycle. He gave me a shot of dilaudid and phenergan and said to see my neuro if the pain continued after sleeping it off.

    Yes, to no avail. I know it’s a common treatment though. The Migraine page forums would be a good place to learn how successful the treatment has been for others —

    I hope you feel better soon.


  3. I saw an acupuncturist, who also had my taking a variety of herbs, and massage therapist jointly for months. Apparently I’m the only person with CHD and migraines that he wasn’t able to cure… Who knows. Sometimes I would leave the treatments feeling better and other times worse. As Michelle wrote, my acupuncturst told me that the acupuncture cleanses the toxins and so while the toxins are being released, symptoms/pain can increase.

    One funny acupunture story… I went for a morning treatment around 8 a.m. and then went to the office. Before lunch I went to use the restroom. I was washing my hands and glanced at myself in the mirror. It looked like hair on the top of my head was staticy so I went to smooth it out. I actually had a fairly long needle sticking straight out of the top of my head!! He had forgotten to take on of the needles out and I hadn’t noticed it earlier! No one said anything to me either, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t see it!

    That’s hilarious. I can’t believe no one told you that you had a needle sticking out of your head!

    I’m sorry it didn’t work for you.


  4. On a humorous note (and this is a true story) I remember how a friend of mine cured her headaches. (I don’t recommend trying this.) She’d had a headache every day for many months. Her doctor was unsuccessful in helping her so she went to see a chiropractor. An adjustment was done and her headaches went away. A week later she saw the chiropractor again, and another adjustment was done. Her headaches returned. In the week preceding her next chiropractic appointment, she tripped and fell down a short flight of stairs. She wasn’t hurt, and in fact her headaches went away and they never returned.

  5. Sorry to hear about the shift, but it didn’t surprise me. I did acupuncture for 7 years, mostly for other chronic pain conditions, but my migraines were addressed as well. I have a friend who has CFIDS and migraines and she also did acupuncture for many years. We both found that sometimes the acupuncture could stir things up so much we’d end up with a headache. So our experience of it was uneven. Sometimes it helped. Sometimes it aggravated. As I stated in an earlier posting, I also questioned that the frequency of treatment might have been a factor. If it was something I could I have done almost every day, it might have been more helpful. So instead I settled into a daily routine of Chi Gung to help rebalance my energy. And it has definitely helped reduce my migraines. But that’s ME. I don’t know what your path is. But I wish you the best in finding it.

  6. Are you taking herbs in combination?

    Are you adjusting your diet?

    Are you changing your subconcious pattern of thinking everytime you feel a negative thouught floating in?

    Positive mental attitude.

  7. I’ve had both acupuncture and massage therapy, and both can actually make your headaches worse after treatment, because they are supposed to be cleansing toxins from your body. You never know, but continuing the treatments might help in the long run even if they sometimes cause a bad response, especially in the beginning. I’ve heard of some people being helped. I’ve never been “cured” from either method, and actually haven’t continued either due to costs, but they did both help me feel better in some ways and generally decreased my tension. Which I guess helps to some extent since I’m also a chronic headache/migraine sufferer.

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