Tag Archives: concussion

Aromatherapy Conconcussion blend #1

As I previously discussed, the aromatherapy has been having a definite positive impact on my migraines.  Initially, I started with pure Frankincense oil to conduct a causal determination that the Frankincense oil was the specific ingredient resulting in the improvement.  I didn’t take any meds at all during the week of testing.  I was so pleased with the result, I decided to start testing various blends of essential oils to create my own aromatherapy solution for healing my concussion as a whole and not just blocking the migraine symptoms.  Note, my concussion was sustained 5.5 months ago, so this isn’t just going away on it’s own.

The major symptoms I have been having were migraines (when reading computer screens at work all day under florescent lighting), low grade headaches (in particular when using Frankincense to block the migraines), and excessive fatigue (again more noticeable following extended computer use/florescent lighting at work).

I have not yet found any aromatherapy blends specifically targeting concussions, which is surprising.  Therefore, I researched oils used for combating migraines, headaches, and fatigue and chose my ingredients.  Frankincense is rarely used for any of these purposes based on my research so far.  I discovered the link to healing concussions and migraines through other blogs like mine.

Rob’s Concussion Blend #1

15ml almond oil (carrier oil)

20 drops Frankincense oil (NOTE – I initially started with 10 drops but after a few days, I could tell there was not enough Frankincense having been using it pure previously)

8 drops Eucalyptus oil

8 drops Lemongrass oil

4 drops Peppermint oil

If anyone else local is also combating a concussion or just migraines and wants to join in the aromatherapy testing, you are welcome to email me.  Some of the oils are quite expensive and it doesn’t take much to test or create blends like this.

I will post next week after I have given this blend a chance to work.  My initial thought is I may have to add more Frankincense based on the fact that I was using it pure previously.

Aromatherapy follow up

In case you missed it, read my first post about trying aromatherapy for my migraines here.  I have been trying out the Frankincense oil for about a week.  My general routine has been to go to work and within the first 30 minutes of using my computer, put a drop or two of oil on my finger and rub it on the top of my chest, temples, across forehead, and base of neck.  I reapply after lunch and maybe one more time per day as needed.  I have a small bottle of the oil in my desk drawer and another at home, so there is no issue with not having it when needed.

The result is I end up with more of a low-grade headache, but not a full-blown migraine.  On the few occasions when I haven’t used the oil and a migraine starts to set in, the aromatherapy has been very effective at creating immediate pain relief.  I still feel more fatigued that normal after spending a day at the computer screen, however, I would rather be tired instead of tired and incapacitated.

Here is where it gets interesting.  Since sharing this, I know of 2 other cases where people suffering from migraines went and bought frankincense oil to try this for themselves.  Both reported results very similar to mine, including immediate relief from the migraine!

I am going to do some more research to build a small blend of essential oils to see if there is something I can add that will relieve the dull headache as well and possible aid with the fatigue.  So far, I haven’t found a pre-made blend that has want I want.  I love that there is really no risk in trying this on my own.

Read the next post about my concussion blend I created.

Trying out aromatherapy

Last week I started my new job on staff at the Naval War College in Newport RI. I spend an hour commuting each way and then my day is spent in a room of florescent lights in front of a computer screen. I went from have 1 or 2 low grade migraines a week (still from the concussion in January) to a debilitating migraine every day by the time I left work. Clearly something needed to change.
Since I have been learning about complementary therapies for horses, I decided to look into some for my concussion healing. While medications may help some with the migraine once it starts, there was nothing to promote the healing of the concussion.
So this evening, after taking a short nap when I got home to deal with the migraine, I headed to Herbwise Naturals in Westerly (thanks Holly). I specifically wanted to get frankincense oil based on some reading I had do e that I indicated it helped others heal from concussions.
There was a sample bottle of the frankincense oil. I placed the sample under my nose and breathed for a short time. Within 30 seconds, I could feel the migraines sweeping back away from my forehead. The pressure receded to the back of my skull. It was amazing how fast the impact was. I bought 2 small bottles (2 different brands) and put a small amount of the oil across my forehead and on the back of my neck. Over the next 40 minutes, the pain moved deeper into my skull, then shifted to right where a ball cap would sit on my forehead and was gone from deep inside.
Then the pain settled down onto the bridge of my nose like someone pushing down on glasses. Finally, the pressure lifted completely and the migraine was gone. This is significant because the migraines rarely dissipate without a full night of rest.
I am hopeful that the aromatherapy will help with healing from the concussion instead of treating symptoms related to the concussion. I will post an update to see if the aromatherapy helps avoid the onset of the migraines.

Read Aromatherapy Follow up

how I ran 2 very important miles today

This afternoon, the temps were about 54F.  So, I put on my running SHORTS! and strapped Amanda into the jogging stroller.  Alex hopped on his bike, and I got out the nicer leash for Mack to come along.  And then, we ran (Alex biked) for just over a mile, turned around, and ran back.  It was at about a 9:30 pace, which is pretty slow for me.  My legs are already a little sore.  Oh yeah, that is the FIRST time I have been running since my concussion in early January.

The past two weeks have been significant improvements for me.  While yesterday, I did come home from work with a migraine bad enough I needed to take some meds and head to bed, that was the first time I had to nap in over a week.  In fact, I have only taken meds for a headache about 2 times in the past 2 weeks.

While I know I am not back to 100% and I don’t intend to rush things, it is nice to finally feel like I am making progress.  I am also happy to report that I no longer need the reading glasses prescribed by the optometrist.

Life since the concussion

7 weeks ago, I got thrown off Calli and got a concussion.  You can read about the accident here and here (if you missed it).  Last night, while talking with some friends I realized haven’t really posted about the effects.

For the past 7 weeks, I have had a migraine almost every day.  I had a CT Scan and an MRI, and neither showed any damage.  I have followup appointments with a neurosurgeon every 2 two weeks.  I’ve been on Fioricet, which helps with some relief.  I recently started with Maxalt, but don’t think it really helps with the migraines.  I have spent the past 7 weeks mapping out what triggers the migraines, and trying to avoid the triggers.

Most of the triggers are optical.  I have seen an optometrist, who determined I need to start using reading glasses.  While it is likely temporary, the reading glasses help, to an extent, as long as I stayed focused on just what I am trying to read.

Extended time on the computer will start to affect me, but eventually, I need a break.  Reading printed pages are the hardest.

I haven’t been running since the accident.  Jarring motions, such as pounding a shovel into the frozen ground, will give me a migraine in a matter of minutes.

Bright, flashing lights are a problem. For example, headlights at night.  I avoid going out at night.  In fact, I have only intentionally driven after dark twice more than about 5 miles within town.

There is also a significant audio component to triggering the migraines.  I can hammer a nail without a problem.  However, if Anna was to start hammering and I didn’t see what she was doing, it would trigger a migraine.  There is something about the ability of my brain to anticipate the noise.  This is frequently an issue with the kids playing in the house.

Most days, it is just a matter of the day wearing me down until the migraine starts.  Sometimes I need to just lay down for a nap.  A few days a week, I have to go to bed after dinner while Anna handles bedtime.

Most days, it is just a matter of the wear and tear.  Luckily, trimming hooves doesn’t seem to bother me and is actually refreshing.

The doctors tell me while my symptoms have persisted longer than most people who get a concussion, it is still considered the acute phase since the injury.  It won’t be until the symptoms have persisted 3-6 months before they consider this a chronic issue.  Hopefully, we will never get to that point.


Ok, so it’s a concussion

Yesterday, during a trail ride, I got thrown off Calli. You can read about how it happened in Training Calli #2. Yesterday evening, I had a mild headache but no significant issues. This morning, my headache had shifted from the back of my head more towards the front. When I turned my head quickly to the side, it would make me a little dizzy/disoriented and I was having a little occasional nausea. So, I went to the Dr.
Diagnosis: concussion.
Recommendation: don’t get thrown off horses. Also sending me to get a rain CT scan to make sure there is no internal bleeding.

I am replacing my Tipperary helmet, even though I can’t see damage to the structure.

Every ride, every time. That is the name of a video in Pony Club about helmet safety and a mantra we live by on our farm. No one rides a horse at our place without a helmet. This is why.