You don’t have to live with the pounding, squeezing, aching misery of migraines.
More than just a normal headache, a migraine can last for as long as 72 hours, according to the National Headache Foundation. The headache is often accompanied by symptoms including nausea or vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, and visual disturbances. In addition to causing extreme pain, migraines can lead to missed school and work.
Keep these tips in mind to help prevent and treat your migraines.
- Know your triggers. Many times, migraine headaches can be set off by a certain smell or food. Getting excessive or inadequate sleep can lead to a migraine, as can stress and anxiety, head trauma, or hormonal changes. Try to keep track of what causes your migraines, and avoid these triggers if at all possible.
- Try temperature techniques. Time-honored tricks for relieving migraine pain include placing an ice pack on the painful area of your head, taking a cold shower, or soaking your hands and feet in cold water. Heat can also help—try the same tactics, but with hot water instead.
- Get a massage. Massage therapy can help reduce stress, which can trigger or worsen a migraine. Trigger point massage can also help release the tension in your neck and shoulders that is either causing or resulting from migraines. Talk with your massage therapist about your migraines to see if there’s anything else he or she can do to help relieve your pain.
- Avoid overmedicating. If you are using medications such as acetaminophen or aspirin to relieve pain, you may experience a medication overuse headache. Closely follow the guidelines printed on the label, and talk with your physician about how often you use over-the-counter pain relievers.
- Talk with your physician. Your primary care provider can be a huge help in discovering what’s causing your migraines, as well as finding the proper medication to treat and prevent migraines.
To find a physician who can help you manage your migraines, visit parkridgehealth.com/physicians.