Migraines are recurring and often debilitating headaches. They may be accompanied by nausea, body pain, vomiting and other symptoms. Many people who experience migraines must miss work and may lose income as a result of them, and it is common to have one or more migraines per month. It is estimated that 70 percent of those who get migraines are women, and approximately 18 percent of all women get migraines. With this in mind, you may be wondering what you can do to prevent migraines or to minimize their length and severity when they do strike.
Create a Quiet, Relaxing Environment
Many people who experience migraine headaches are able to tell when one is coming on. For example, you may see an aura immediately before getting hit with the full force of pain and other symptoms. As soon as possible, head to a dark, quiet room. Invest in room darkening blinds, such as those from Shutterflex, so that you can rest peacefully during the day. Blinds are especially helpful if you are one of the many people who have light-induced migraines.
If your migraines are caused by light, however, it’s important to make sure that you keep that in mind when it comes to your home environment. As stated before, you should have blinds that keep the light out. You might also want to watch out for how much digital technology you have displayed around your home. By this, I mean alarm clocks, TV’s, computers, and pretty much anything with a screen. Such items can also trigger your migraines. Try to make sure that these things are not used in the room that you retreat to in order to feel relieved from your head pain.
Know How to Treat Yourself Naturally
Your doctor may prescribe one or more prescription drugs that could help you, but there are also natural remedies available. For example, aromatherapy, herbal remedies and acupuncture provide some people with exceptional relief. These natural remedies are ideal if you cannot take prescription drugs or if you want to reduce or limit your intake of medications.
Another form of natural treatment is getting adjusted by a chiropractor. The way that your neck cracks can actually help your migraine pain to decrease. Don’t try to do that yourself, though. Always make sure to go to a qualified professional. Look at reviews and search among your friends for references as you want to make sure that only the best person is handling your condition.
Get Your Hormone Levels Checked
One common cause of migraines in women is their hormones. Specifically, many women report that their migraines coincide with a decrease in estrogen that usually occurs just before menstruation. Pay attention to your migraines in conjunction with your menstrual cycle. If you notice that your migraines start a day or two before your period starts, talk to your doctor about hormone therapy treatments that may provide relief.
One good way to keep track of whether or not your migraines are related to your hormones would be to keep a calendar. Create a special color coding system so that you can mark down the days that you have a migraine and on what days you might be going through your menstrual cycle or feeling hormonal. Do this for three months and then show the calendar to your doctor. Together, you can decide whether or not there truly is a connection between your hormones and your migraines. This will then help your doctor to know how to better help you. Maybe this means that you will need to go on birth control. Perhaps you’ll have to change your schedule around to adjust for your cycle. Whatever it is, knowing what is wrong is the first step to solving the problem.
Live a Healthy Lifestyle
Everything from the foods you eat and skipping meals to the amount of sleep you get, your alcohol intake and your stress level can lead to migraines or can make them worse. It is important to understand how your lifestyle may be contributing to this health issue. Keep a journal of your sleeping, eating and drinking patterns for a few months, and log when you get migraines in your journal. You may be able to spot contributing factors that lead to your migraines, and you can easily adjust your lifestyle to decrease their severity and frequency.
It may seem like migraines develop out of the blue and as though you have no other choice but to suffer through them in misery. However, you can see that there are reasonable and helpful steps you can follow to limit migraines substantially.