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Explaining migraines can be tricky. This comic helps.

A personal account of a migraine attack, plus why they happen and what you should know.

Explaining migraines can be tricky. This comic helps.

At first, Summer Pierre thought they were just really bad headaches.

"Until one day, I got one of the bad headaches, and Tylenol didn't do anything, and I started throwing up," Pierre told Upworthy in an email. "I mentioned it to my therapist at the time and she said, 'That's not a headache, that's a migraine.'"

Pierre is a comic artist, writer, and teacher. In 2013, she captured a particular experience with a migraine in this comic:



Comic by Summer Pierre, used with permission, adapted for mobile use. Original can be found here.

It turns out that Pierre has been experiencing migraines for more than 20 years.

"I'm pretty prone to them, so I can wake up with the symptoms coming on a couple times a week, but they can be curbed with medication for the most part," she said. "The really bad ones that can't be stopped with medication happen about once a month."

If you're one of the about 13% of our population who experiences migraines, you know what Pierre is talking about.

Migraines can be debilitating. They can last for hours, sometimes days. They usually come in distinct phases and can include more than just pain: Fatigue, nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, and seeing auras are just some of the symptoms.

They can be so bad that it pretty much keeps you from doing anything but wishing they'd go away, an experience Pierre called "pretty damn frustrating."

There's even a weird migraine hangover phase, where people often feel very tired (although some people, like Pierre, also get a kind of migraine-induced euphoria after).

Some things can help, including medication and avoiding triggers.

Certain things like alcohol or medications might bring on migraines. But the triggers are usually highly variable and unique to each person.

And as a final kick in the teeth, stress can be a trigger, too, because migraines are soooo relaxing already.

Luckily, we're getting closer to figuring out what causes migraines, which could be a game-changer.

Researchers think migraines happen when there's abnormal blood flow to parts of the brain. And while migraines appear to be partly environmental, we're also starting to identify genes that may be responsible too. This is pretty cool because it could lead to more personalized, targeted migraine treatments in the future.

If you're having a migraine, take care of yourself.

And if you know someone who is having one, think of Pierre and summon as much empathy as you can.

"Unless you suffer from migraines or know someone intimately who does, people just don't seem to understand them. Migraines aren't just headaches — they are a full body system that has many parts to it," Pierre said.

"They are not to be ignored, powered through, or taken lightly."

True


Often, parents of children with special needs struggle to find Halloween costumes that will accommodate medical equipment or provide a proper fit. And figuring out how to make one? Yikes.

There's good news; shopDisney has added new ensembles to their already impressive line of adaptive play costumes. And from 8/30 - 9/26, there's a 20% off sale for all costume and costume accessory orders of $75+ with code Spooky.

When looking for the right costume, kids with unique needs have a lot of extra factors to consider: wheelchair wheels get tangled up in too-long material, feeding tubes could get twisted the wrong way, and children with sensory processing disorders struggle with the wrong kind of fabric, seams, or tags. There are a lot of different obstacles that can come between a kid and the ability to wear the costume of their choice, which is why it's so awesome that more and more companies are recognizing the need for inclusive creations that make it easy for everyone to enjoy the magic of make-believe.

Created with inclusivity in mind, the adaptive line is designed to discreetly accommodate tubes or wires from the front or the back, with lots of stretch, extra length and roomier cut, and self-stick fabric closures to make getting dressed hassle-free. The online shop provides details on sizing and breaks down the magical elements of each outfit and accessory, taking the guesswork out of selecting the perfect costume for the whole family.

Your child will be able to defeat Emperor Zurg in comfort with the Buzz Lightyear costume featuring a discreet flap opening at the front for easy tube access, with self-stick fabric closure. There is also an opening at the rear for wheelchair-friendly wear, and longer-length inseams to accommodate seated guests. To infinity and beyond!

An added bonus: many of the costumes offer a coordinating wheelchair cover set to add a major boost of fun. Kids can give their ride a total makeover—all covers are made to fit standard size chairs with 24" wheels—to transform it into anything from The Mandalorian's Razor Crest ship to Cinderella's Coach. Some options even come equipped with sounds and lights!

From babies to adults and adaptive to the group, shopDisney's expansive variety of Halloween costumes and accessories are inclusive of all.

Don't forget about your furry companions! Everyone loves to see a costumed pet trotting around, regardless of the occasion. You can literally dress your four-legged friend to look like Sven from Frozen, which might not sound like something you need in your life but...you totally do. CUTENESS OVERLOAD.

This year has been tough for everyone, so when a child gets that look of unfettered joy that comes from finally getting to wear the costume of their dreams, it's extra rewarding. Don't wait until the last minute to start looking for the right ensemble!


*Upworthy may earn a portion of sales revenue from purchases made through affiliate links on our site.

Photo by Tod Perry

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