at long last–a migraine remedy!

First of all, sorry for being MIA. My computer is giving me fits–it’s broken in several places and barely functions right now.

But this is too good not to share.

Migraines have been a big part of my life for a long time. Over the years, I’ve identified triggers. I’ve figured out a supplement regimen. I’ve learned that deviating too far from a set routine can spell disaster. And I’ve managed to reduce my headaches from 2-3 a week to 1-2 every couple of weeks–or even fewer. That’s huge.

But I didn’t have anything to take when a headache hit. Over-the-counter medications are a complete joke. Prescription Imitrex coupled with 2 Aleve DOES knock out a headache, but I have never been able to afford the prescription. We currently don’t have health insurance, but even when we did they refused to pay for anything related to migraine.

So I floundered, trying different things, hoping to stumble upon something that might work.

Essential oils got me close. A blend my sister-in-law recommended would take the edge off a headache. It at least enabled me to function at some level. I applied it topically as well as diffusing it when I have a migraine. It was better than anything I’d tried thus far. But it didn’t kill the pain.

But I kept reading about this herbal tincture that was supposed to relieve migraine pain. I hesitated to try it. The remedy used feverfew. Years ago, I tried feverfew as a daily preventive. It killed my stomach, so I stopped taking it. I wasn’t eager to give that herb another go.

But by the fourth or fifth time the same remedy popped up in my news feed, I started thinking it might be worth a try. I used some Christmas money and ordered the herbs online.

I mostly used this recipe. I did add some fresh peppermint. Another tincture recipe was floating around (which I can no longer find and give a link), and it had peppermint. To be perfectly honest, feverfew is some of the nastiest-tasting stuff on the planet, and I was hoping peppermint might improve the flavor a bit. I didn’t really measure the amount of peppermint I used–I just bought one of those small packs of organic mint that the grocery store sells in the produce section. I chopped it up and threw it all in the jar with the feverfew and lemon balm.

I waited the full six weeks then strained out the herbs.

This stuff stinks like you would not believe. Seriously, it smells atrocious.

But I found out yesterday that it works.

We’ve had some winter storms moving through the area, one after another. My head does not appreciate such shenanigans.

So this morning I pulled out my tincture and took the first half-teaspoon. I actually put it in a cup of tea to try to hide the flavor a bit. I added honey too.

I took a second quarter-teaspoon dose about an hour and a half later. By this point I was already feeling better.

One final dose at lunch, and the headache was gone. GONE!

I am beyond thrilled. Especially since the extracted feverfew has not torn my stomach to shreds thus far like it did in tea and capsule form.

Now, this remedy is not without side effects. It made me really sleepy and groggy and kind of fuzzy-headed. I wouldn’t be able to take if and then drive somewhere. So it might not keep me from missing events if my husband isn’t going as well and able to drive. (Although the fog cleared once I was able to take a nap–I kind of slept it off.)

But still…wow.

The tincture after it’s done (it looks kind of like tea):

Have you have tried an herbal remedy? Have any favorites to share?

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4 thoughts on “at long last–a migraine remedy!

  1. Have tried feverfew under the tongue. Did nothing for me. Have tried some homeopathic things but have found generic Maxalt can abort most of my menstrual migraines which happen twice a day for up to two weeks. The problem is the headaches recur every 6-8 hours for the whole cycle. I’m hoping menopause will make a real difference. Glad you found a remedy but find it awful you don’t have access to triptans (the generics are pretty cheap).

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    • Triptans are really amazing! I’ve heard really good things about Maxalt, but I didn’t know it had gone generic (I knew Imitrex and one other had). I would still love to be able to keep a triptan on hand someday, because I know that they JUST WORK. But for now, I’m glad to have something I can use. 🙂

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

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  2. i make a similar tincture for migraine with lemon balm, feverfew, lavender and passion flower. it, too, tastes very nasty. but it works! two books that i have found to be very helpful, regarding herbs in general, are “Practical Herbalism” by Philip Fritchey; and “Adaptogens: Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief” by David Winston and Steven Maimes. i tried an herb blend for a sleep tincture (from the vendor pictured above…great company), and then concocted a similar recipe that i make from scratch using lemon balm, catnip, chamomile, passion flower, oatstraw and valerian. valerian is a very stinky root, but very effective, and will give one interesting dreams and a good night’s sleep. a fabulous all-around plant that americans spend many dollars trying to eradicate is plantain. i use this to make a tincture, syrup, oil and even use in salve. plantain is great straight out of the ground for bites and stings and to stop bleeding. the tincture and syrup are good for sore throat, congestion and runny nose. wendell used the plantain oil when he had his chainsaw accident and it sped up healing and prevented infection. we have copious amounts of plantain in the yard and i harvest it regularly. even the dogs are given herbs now, instead of manufactured medications!

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