Migraine is a common neurological disorder that typically causes severe, recurring headaches that may throb or pulse. It affects millions of people worldwide. Migraine attacks can be extremely debilitating and can significantly affect a person’s quality of life.
In this blog, we will discuss some symptoms of the medical condition along with tips to ease the pain of migraines.
Symptoms of Migraine
Migraine is characterized by episodes of moderate-to-severe headache, and sometimes also comes with a variety of additional symptoms, including:
- Throbbing or pulsing headache that is usually moderate to severe in intensity
- Normal to severe sensitivity to light and sound
- Nausea and vomiting
- Visual disturbances such as flashes of light, zigzag lines, or blind spots
- Tingling or numbness in the face, hands, or feet
- Dizziness or vertigo that is mild or severe enough to make performing everyday activities difficult.
- Fatigue and exhaustion
- Difficulty in concentrating, thereby making it difficult to perform everyday tasks.
It’s important to note that not all people with migraines experience all of these symptoms. Symptoms can vary from person to person and from one migraine attack to another.
Tips to ease migraine pain
Here are some tips you can follow to ease migraine pain:
Identify migraine triggers
The first step in managing the painful condition is to identify triggers. Triggers are things that can bring on a migraine attack. Some common triggers include stress, weather, alcohol, hormonal changes, lack of sleep, certain smells and foods like chocolate, cured meats, dairy foods, red wine, peanuts, and aged cheese. Keeping a diary of migraine attacks and tracking triggers can help you identify what triggers your migraines.
Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is essential for managing migraines. Lack of sleep is a common trigger for migraines. Adopt healthy sleep habits like going to bed at the same time every night and getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night, maintaining a consistent sleep schedule.
Dehydration or a lack of fluid intake is another common reason for migraines. Make sure to consume plenty of water all day long. Avoid caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, such as beer, wine, and liquor, as they can cause dehydration. If you find it challenging to drink enough water, try eating foods that contain plenty of water, such as fruits and vegetables, broths and soups, yoghurt, cottage cheese, watermelon, peaches, strawberries etc.
Stress is a significant trigger for migraines. It is essential to manage stress to reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine attacks. Find ways to relax, such as taking a warm bath, listening to music, or practising yoga. Make time for enjoyable pursuits like reading, dancing, participating in sports, dancing, or playing with your pet. Additionally, schedule some time each day, even if it’s just 10 minutes, to relax. Try to avoid situations that cause stress, if possible. If you are unable to avoid stress, try stress-management techniques such as deep breathing or progressive muscle relaxation.
Regular physical activity can help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine attacks. Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural painkillers. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day, such as walking or cycling. If you are new to exercise, start slowly and build up the intensity gradually.
Use Essential Oils
Essential oils can be used to relieve migraine pain. Peppermint oil and lavender oil are two essential oils that have been shown to be effective in reducing migraine pain. You can inhale the oils or apply them topically to the temples, neck, or forehead.
Apply heat or cold
Applying heat or cold to the head can help relieve migraine pain. Some people find that applying a cold compress to the forehead or temples can help reduce the intensity of a migraine attack. Others find that applying heat, such as a warm compress or a hot shower, can help relieve tension in the neck and shoulders, which can trigger migraines.
Acupuncture is a traditional form of Chinese medicine that involves the insertion of thin needles into specific points of the body. It has been shown to be effective in reducing migraine pain. Acupuncture can help reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine attacks and improve overall quality of life.
Take migraine medications
There are several medications available to treat migraines. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can be effective in relieving mild to moderate migraine pain. Prescription medications can be used to treat more severe migraine attacks. But before taking any medication you should always consult your doctor.
A migraine is more than just a bad headache. Migraine headaches can be debilitating and prevent people from engaging in daily activities like going to work or school. Thankfully, by following the above tips, you can potentially avoid getting a migraine or cope with and endure the symptoms. To reduce the impact of migraine headaches on your life, it is recommended that you consult your physician.