Stress and migraine


Hubby has suffered from migraines for years.     When he gets them, he usually takes to his bed to sleep it off for anything between a couple of hours and a couple of days.     More often than not, they don’t properly subside until he has vomited.      After years of trying different kinds of medication, he presently has tablets that seem to do the trick, and – touching wood as I type this, hasn’t had a really bad episode for quite a while.

Both boys are very highly strung – I think you will know that if you have read anything about them I have said in the past, and as such as prone to finding what many of us would class as regular situations, extremely stressful.     It is just part of who they are and I believe an obvious example of their autism.      They both deal with the stress in different ways.     D bottles it up until he explodes.

M on the other hand tends to manifest his stress into physical complaints.        For years it has almost become an expected thing to hear him with a barking cough the day before he is doing something out of the ordinary.      Even if you didn’t look at the calendar, two days before the start of every term, he barks himself through the night.      It is as if his body clock has programmed the cough as a back to school alarm.        He then started complaining about having hot heads – a perfect way to describe a headache I think.       These hot heads were more often than not accompanied with violent vomiting.     We wondered if the pattern, which followed his Dads, was meaning he was also a migraine sufferer.       We took him to the doctors and he was diagnosed with abdominal migraines –        The medication he was given is to be taken when he feels sick, to calm his stomach down – apparently at his age, they don’t like prescribing anything strong as he may well grow out of them.        It works fine, when he realises what is happening, and says he has a hot head.    However, M is not one to talk about himself very much, and isn’t forward at offering information, so it can be a bit of a Miss Marple to work out what is going on with him.       One sure sign is that he become overly cuddly.     He isn’t one for too much personal contact, unless it is on his terms – he just doesn’t like his personal space violated, so if he is being touchy feely, then it is usually a sure way of telling something is up.     This week was back to school, and so we were expecting him to be a little out of sorts.    Monday morning, sure as anything, the first words out of his mouth were asking me not to make him go to “that place!”.     But when I told him he was going, he didn’t bring up the subject again, which was good as D was in such a state –      M has had a few dodgy moments this school year with his interactions with our children being difficult at times, but he has a few strong people around him – all girls, that seem to accept his quirkiness and enjoy his company.      Within the classroom he seems to be doing well to the point of us seeing enthusiasm from him that we have never witnessed before.      Usually when project work comes home, he just leave be to take it from his bag, but the joy that oozed from him as he talked me through the work about the rain forest – last terms topic, was wonderful to see.     He was made up by the creature he had sewed from felt, and now wants to learn from Granny how to mend his cuddly buds!       So he seems to be in quite a happy place at the moment – and long may it last.        It was therefore quite surprising on Wednesday evening when he said his head was starting to feel hot, and he ran to the bathroom to be sick.       He perked up after being sick but wanted a lot of cuddles before bedtime.      Now, I am a great believer of the 48 hour rule – staying away from school for 48 hours after the last time you were sick to ensure any bugs were not going to be passed on,  to the point it makes me quite angry when parents happily tell you how ill their kids are but they’ve put them to school anyway.    I do however think when the sickness is not germ related there is flexibility, and I spoke to one of his previous teachers who agreed with me on this point.      Yesterday morning he got up, but was so floppy , that I put him back to bed.     He had what Hubby describes as a migraine hangover – feeling rough after the worst of it has past.        He therefore was to be off school.     He spent the day doing very little but snuggling with me – it did mean I got to sit on the sofa most of the day, but my jobs didn’t vanish while I was there!         I managed to get him to finish his homework but it was hard going, not with the usual anti-homework attitude, but his head was still all over the place.     This morning he still wasn’t quite himself so I have kept him home, much to the annoyance of D.

I can only assume that the return to school has been stressful for him, and that in time he will tell us if he feels ready.    It is difficult at times to understand how stressed he must be to become physically ill, and it is hard when it happens as, like most parents, I feel I should notice those little changes in the build up to an episode and feel irrationally guilty when I don’t.     He is more himself now, but still a little lack lustre so I don’t think I will mention going to school this afternoon!!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s