Work Makes Me Sick

For the past 8 or 9 years, I’ve had migraines. They didn’t develop until I was an adult, and they increased in frequency and intensity after having kids. They are generally hormonally related. I’ll get a migraine, and start my period the next day. The past year or so, I’ve had them once a month (duh), sometimes every other month, but definitely manageable with OTC migraine meds (Ex.cedrin, generally).

Since starting this new job, my migraine frequency and intensity has more than quadrupled. In a 5 day work week, I leave at the end of the day with a migraine (complete with light sensitivity and nausea – NOT a tension headache) at least twice, often three times. Yesterday, after being at my interview and coming back to the office at lunchtime, the headache came within an hour of being back. It got so bad that I chose to do my work by printing out what I was working on and keeping my head down concentrating on my desk instead of my computer.

Here’s the thing, I know it’s not my computer, because I’ve spent my entire adult working life in front of a computer. I’m on the computer at night all the time. Best I can figure, it’s a result of the fluorescent lighting overhead. One of my coworkers was having similar issues and removed the bulbs from the light over her.

The migraine I got yesterday afternoon was not really gone today, and it only took me an hour and a half before I was so nauseous I was non-functional. The weird thing was that my head didn’t hurt that badly, but the nausea was horrible. I did a bit of reading, and found that fluorescent lighting is basically in a constant flickering state, which can wreak havoc on people.

I’ve always worked in offices, but they’ve generally had higher ceilings than this one, maybe the proximity of the lighting to my workstation is creating a problem too. So removing the bulbs and moving to task lighting (like a desk lamp) should resolve the issue.

I hope. Otherwise what the hell am I supposed to do?


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