DISCLAIMER -I want to start off by saying by no means am I a medical professional. With the help of my physiotherapist, the internet and trial and error I have been experimenting with different non medical treatments for various symptom relief. In no way am I claiming my ways work for everyone and I still suggest anyone talk to their doctor/therapist before ever trying to tackle at home treatments like this.
This past weekend I had a massive migraine hit out of nowhere. Due to taking neproxen (and it not doing shit all apart from extra nausea and drowsiness I might add) I couldn’t take any other NSAIDS and due to stomach acid medication there was no way I was taking codeine and backing myself up for days. I was left with no medicinal relief and I HAD to be able to get out of the house for an optometrist appointment as well as the dreaded weekly groceries trip.
I have used kinesiology tape for various other muscular and joint problems with great success. When my SI Joint was flared up to high heaven it was about the only thing that got me walking (to and from the bathroom, but I’ll get what I can take!). I had never really considered when I started with it how many different things it could help with when used properly.
I have read about the connection of relieving tension in shoulder, neck and upper back muscles and the direct relief of at least some migraine pain but before this point had only dabbled in pressure points and light massage. Due to the fact that my PT’s office was closed Mr.Mango and I had to research and attempt this on our own for the first time. With the help of some youtube videos and a handy dandy musculature anatomy diagram we were ready to try it out.
While I can’t really explain exactly how we worked it between talking it out slowly and ‘practicing’ on the left side which wasn’t nearly as bad we managed to de-activate the tension down the neck and into the shoulder by using a very slight pull in the tape and as you can see getting it as darn close to/on the hair line as possible.
Some relief came almost instantaneously. I was honestly surprised. The burning shooting pain I usually feel down my right shoulder blade was completely gone and while it didn’t help the pain in my head the relief of being able to straighten my neck and move my arms was enough to really make it already worth it.
After getting dressed and ready to go even the nausea and throbbing was down, not gone and not ‘ignore-able’ but tolerable enough to at least attempting the drive into the city.
A handy scarf and my winter jacket and the sight of bright blue was rather well hidden, at least for the most part. You have to forgive the rather glazed look, like I said the nausea was better not gone and apparently it has a rather unique effect on my face (or at least so Mr. Mango says).
It wasn’t an easy day, sometimes I doubted how well it was working long term. Then I remembered how bad it has been in the past when a migraine hits while we’re already out. The kids screaming, the music blaring, in and out of the warm car/cold weather, the bright lights of stores and offices, the blurriness of people rushing by…. I was making it through without a meltdown and without having to head to the bathroom to puke or panic. That’s a win for the tape in my books.
I really wish I had the opportunity to leave it on for the rest of the migraine but due to the fact that it was caught in my hair and that in itself was causing some annoyance so before bed at the end of the day I ended up (very carefully) removing it. Right away the tension along my neck returned and the burning feeling shooting down right along with it.
Clearly it wasn’t a miracle therapy and it wasn’t one that lasts after use, but it worked well enough that I could get through the day and I have no doubt without it, it would have been a completely cancelled schedule or worse a trip to emergency again for the pain.
I will definitely be looking into using it again when the need arises and will be bringing it up at my next PT appointment to see if I can modify it in any way to make it even better.