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Cold weather triggering attacks

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#1 Sun, 05/11/2023 - 09:52
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: 03/12/2022 - 08:35

Cold weather triggering attacks

Hi, I have suffered with episodic CH for around 30 years - I'm now 53 and the attacks appear to be getting longer and more frequent - my only relief is the sumatriptan injections - these injections were and are a game changer for me. I can function almost as normal  once the attack has subsided - just have a jaded feeling and my processing / memory recall is a lot slower. I have noticed over the past 2 years  that my attacks hit a peek when the weather turns cold - during  the last week I have been woken 5 out of 6 mornings by an attack - the one morning I was CH free the temperature in my bedrooom was not as cold.  I  hooked up a thick blanket over my window last night to try and keep the cold out - this morning I have woken with mild symptoms - pain in some areas but not a full on attack..I wondered if anyone else has experienced the same and if so can they share any tips. I don't really want to have the heating on over night due to obvious costs - but I'll have to seriously consider this as the weather is only going to get colder.  Thanks for listening - wishing you all a pain free day! 

Karen H

Tue, 07/11/2023 - 11:03
Dorothy Trustee
Dorothy Trustee's picture
Last seen: 2 days 3 hours ago
Joined: 19/02/2014 - 10:16

Hi Karen

I remember having one of my worst attacks because of intense cold some years ago.  I was having a short break in the Lake District; it was November and the weather was icy cold. This set off a pretty horrendous attack outside of my due bout - I could usually accurately predict the month of my next bout. We were in a bed and breakfast and the heating wasn't working so it was like a fridge in the bedroom. I didn't have oxygen in those days and it was a horrible experience, it ruined the weekend. Not long after that I discovered oxygen and OUCH and haven't looked back. Because of all the advice from other sufferers I met through OUCH I did learn a lot. I never go away without oxygen or frovatriptan tablets and a few cans of energy drink in my bag in case of a sudden attack.  Energy drinks should only be used in moderation though, it's not good to overuse them. You can read about frovatriptan in the holiday hints in downloads. What you describe sounds like a shadow - not a full attack but nearly. I feel for you about the cold and the cost of putting the heating on. What about wearing something on your head in bed? Don't laugh - I was once in a hospital ward next to a young woman who wore a hat in bed every night to keep her hair in place! 

All the best to you and pain free wishes.

Dorothy (Trustee)

Sun, 12/11/2023 - 10:26
Last seen: 1 month 1 week ago
Joined: 03/12/2022 - 08:35

Hi Dorothy,

Thank you for your response and sharing your experience....the suggestion of wearing a hat in bed made me laugh - only because I do! I'm quite a light sleeper so when I wake usually about 2am ish. I guage the temperature drop and then if needs be I pull my woolly hat from underneath my pillow and put it on - I tend to pull it over my face so it covers my nose so I'm not breathing in direct cold air. I must look a sight ! --

Since my last post I have resorted to putting the heating on around 3-30 am just for an hour and I have to say it's really helped. Sometimes I wake with a 'shadow' rather than a full blown attack and on a couple of occasions I have woken  attack free - I just hope we don't have a cold winter with plummeting temperatures like we did last winter--. 
thanks again 
take care 


Karen H

Tue, 14/11/2023 - 16:21
Last seen: 3 weeks 2 days ago
Joined: 26/02/2014 - 17:02

I think temperature affects most people's bouts. Cold seems to be the trigger for most; I haven't heard anyone state they're triggered by warmth like me, but I can't be the only one.

I know some use a hot shower to abort a headache. A cold shower in the early hours is less fun.

I'd guess a snug, quilted onsie (one-sie?) would help you stay warm during potential attack times. Wearing hats and thick clothing in bed may seem funny, but a full-blown CH attack at 3am isn't aesthetically pleasing either: We do what we need to.

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