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modernparadigm8 karma

Hi, chronic migraineur with a uterus. I can answer your question: of course menstrual migraines are real migraines. A very large population of migrainuers experience migraine during this time. It's not just hormonal changes--the brain of a migraineur is very, very sensitive to change.

Migraine brains like routine and stasis. Each and every migraineur has their own unique threshold amount that must be lowered for an attack to occur.

Simple things like getting less sleep, becoming emotionally stressed, or getting sick are all things that may drastically lower threshold. Sometimes when we see a noticeable threshold breaching thing, we call it a "trigger," but the truer reality is that migraine works more on a sliding scale.

In the body, hormonal fluctuations, especially the sharp drop of estrogen during ovulation, and the drop of estrogen and progesterone during menstruation are changes that cause stress. This is a very known, common migraine trigger. Anything that might cause the body to be outside of this norm (such as making too much estrogen) could be a trigger as well.

There are ways to deal with this type of migraine, though it's not always quite as straightforward as taking birth control, however. If you have migraine with aura, for example, it is not recommended to take estrogen-containing medication as it very much increases your risk of stroke. There are, however non-estrogen birth control options, as well as acute medications (like triptans) you can take with a carefully timed planner of when your migraine attacks are likely to occur. Any other regular migraine medication that would generally increase overall threshold might just do the trick as well.

Hope this helps!

modernparadigm2 karma

Without a doubt, you've likely been compared to a "medical intuitive" -- when I say this term, I mean the ability to find the cause of a physical condition through clairvoyance.

Do you think there is a tie to mirror touch underlying this area?

Aside from MTS/synesthesia in general, I noticed that I have a really hyper-recognization/noticing of people's faces--as in, I seem to look at the shape of faces kind of intensely, I don't forget them easily. And so, I kind of have a "database" of people's faces/bodies in my head.

This is a different trait altogether, but it seems that "super recognizers" score higher on empathy levels, which leads them to look at faces/bodies more in general.

I think "empaths" too or people with high empathy, (very unfortunately) often come from a place of trauma (particularly childhood), which elevates empathy/recognition levels very high because it's important to read the body/facial cues of a possible abuser... and so they are often extreme emotional facial recognizers in and of themselves.

This has become odd for me in the fact that... although I don't believe in the psychic aspect of "medical intuitiveness", I feel like I actually can pick up on a lot of conditions or personalities that I've been exposed to many times, or have myself. People share a lot of facial continuities with hormones, and expression lines, brow and chin width, masculine or feminine traits etc etc.

I have no tangible proof of this "blending of traits"--only a lot of personal experience, and noticing that this "ailment recognition" went waaaay up after spending the last few years making a lot of clinic/hospital visits.

I'd love to find out though, and sort of wonder that if this kind of "database" of facial/body recognization continuity is the very underlying factor to things like medical intuitiveness.

modernparadigm2 karma

Hi, Lily! xD

modernparadigm1 karma

I have a question about sleep deprivation and cognitive function (if it's okay to ask here, since you're a neuro-guy, and know a lot about sleep)~

I'm a very chronically sleep deprived person. (Very much in the last couple of years.)

I read this:

"Studies have shown that chronically losing sleep (less than six hours per night) leads to poorer performance on cognitive ability tests. After a month or so to recoup (getting eight hours), test results returned to normal.

Studies on those with more severe sleep deprivation (chronically getting less than four hours per night) showed that test scores did not improve after three months of normal sleep. Even long term studies found that test scores did not fully improve in those subjects before the study ended."

Here -> https://www.reddit.com/r/explainlikeimfive/comments/7zynj3/eli5_how_does_sleep_debtbuild_up_work/durujfe/

Is this true? And if so, how wide or small are the dips in permanent cognitive function loss? Like if I fix the underlying parasomnias I have, would I return to a semi-previous state of cognitive function a few years ago, or should I just embrace my new life of dumbness?

You can rip the band-aid off harshly, I swear.

(But gently massaging the band-aid off in warm water, while woefully humming Aerith's Theme Song in my ear as that band-aid slowly sinks to the merciless depths of the sink... is perfectly acceptable too.)

modernparadigm1 karma

I was curious what your thoughts on existentialism were?

I've noticed there is a proclivity among synesthetes for mysticism. I have too many forms of syn to count, and so everything ever is just bursting with meaning and association.

However, at the end of the day, I'm inclined to lean on the neuroscience behind synesthesia (and mirror touch). I know that just because I "feel" it doesn't necessarily mean it's there (metaphysically).

For the most part, I'm content with the significance I give to things (internally generated meaning), vs. from something beyond us (externally generated meaning)--that I think it's worthy on its own.

However, I think existential issues are pretty hard for people anyway... and maybe even harder to have with such an (outrageously) vivid internal sensory experience. For me, it often feels like two dualing dragons (mysticism and scientific explanation).

For example, stripped of even (a small) amount of sensitivity to sense info, I actually start to feel quite distressed. When I was hypothyroid and severely migrainal, I remember feeling less like people were "there" simply because I couldn't see them (or think of them well enough) to feel them heavily on my own body map (mirror touch response).

All this time I was carrying around a landscape of people on my body that suddenly died down quite a bit, and I realized how much that made me feel like spirits, or benign forces were with me (and that I wanted them to stay--real or not).

I think the feeling of somehow being interconnected is important to me, and a little bit disturbing if all human consciousness is truly separate. I often "feel" like it's not--yet know it probably is.

It seems a lot of other mirror touch synesthetes feel interconnected with "the universe" and other people/things simply because they feel everything on their bodies--and this feels intrinsically mystical.