Some of you know that I spent 2.5 years quantifying data to eliminate my late night headaches that wake me up. In the end, I was unsuccessful on finding a single cause, although I learned caffeine plays a role. During that entire experiment, I solely focused on preventing the headache, not on eliminating the pain once it arrived. The reason is I have very poor luck with painkillers.
Before I ask for ideas on how you would address the pain, I’m going to describe the pain and what I’ve tried already.
Below is my wonderful drawing. The red areas are where my headache pain comes from. More info:
- My headaches are around and behind the eyes. They often feel sinus in nature, but there is never signs of a sinus infection.
- The pain is equal on both sides.
- I am not light or sound sensitive.
- Lying down does not help and often makes the pain worse.
- I sometimes get a tight neck upon waking, but most of these headaches do not have a tight neck.
What I’ve tried:
- Aspirin, Tylenol, Aleve, Ibuprofen and numerous anti-histamine sinus medications. Nothing works.
- Tiger Balm. Fine for muscles, does nothing for headaches.
- Sitting upright reduces pain intensity during the early stages. This sucks, because the pain wakes me up and I have to get up.
- Eating or not eating doesn’t seem to make a difference.
- Coffee reduces pain sometimes. It could also be a combination of time and sitting upright that helps.
- L-Tyrosine. Nada.
- L-Glutamine. Nada.
- Cold and Warm compresses. Comforting and distracting, but doesn’t reduce pain duration. I usually don’t bother with them.
- Neti Pot. Makes no dent in pain and sometimes amplifies headache.
My headaches are getting worse again. More frequent and longer duration. My post quitting Quantified Self honeymoon appears to be over. I know caffeine is a player, but I am not in position to reduce it too much at this time. But this post isn’t about prevention. Been there done that. I’m interested in ideas that will knock the pain out quickly. So far nothing has worked for me. If you can solve this riddle, I’d be very grateful.