Beating the Holiday Migraine Beast
For those who suffer with migraine headaches the holidays tend to really bring on the beast—with triggers abounding! From the stress of extra holiday relatives and other guests, plus crowded stores and financial dilemmas, not to mention the various food and smell triggers and the extreme temperature triggers—if you are prone to migraines, this time of year can be the worst. Here are a few preventative and abortive tips to keep you in the right mind and spirit, enjoying the season to the fullest.
5 Migraine Prevention Tips
- Be mindful of stressors. If you feel stress or anxiety building up, take a step back. When possible, remove yourself from the situation or the conversation or the thought and go do something to relieve the stress.
- Manage stress. Things to do to relieve stress include: meditation, exercise, being playful, watching a funny movie, spending time with friends and loved ones doing and activity together, doing something creative like drawing, painting, sculpting, singing, dancing or writing. You can also take a natural relaxant such as Relax Already. It has all-natural ingredients and works great.
- Rest. Getting plenty of sleep is critical to keeping stress in check and preventing migraines. Make certain that you sleep for 6-10 hours every night and maintain good sleep hygiene such as having a dark, cool, quiet room; a comfortable bed and sleepwear; do not eat a heavy meal just before bed; be well hydrated but try not to drink fluids right before bed; take a warm shower or bath before bed to help lower your body temperature for sleep, etc. If you feel tired, it’s okay to take a brief power nap (15-20 minutes) in the middle of the day to help you rejuvenate but only if you can still sleep well at night.
- Avoid anything known or perceived to be a food or beverage trigger. Common food and beverage triggers include certain aged cheese and foods with artificial additives such as chemical food color, preservatives and flavor enhancers, plus coffee (or other caffeinated beverages), and alcoholic beverages especially inexpensive wines.
- Avoid certain odors known or perceived to be an odor trigger such as some perfumes and colognes and other fragrance-rich products such as creams and even room fresheners. Avoid laundry detergent and fabric softeners that contain heavy fragrances. Avoid tobacco smoke such as cigarette smoke and cigar smoke.
- Once you get a migraine headache, there are few remedies more effective than drinking plenty of water and resting in a cool, dark, quiet room. Sometimes a warm bath or shower can help. If this doesn’t help, get on a migraine remedy such as MigraGone that is taken daily to help prevent and reduce severity of migraines.
- When possible, meditation, Tai Chi and yoga can offer some relief to help with pain management.
- Mild scents that you do not find irritating during a migraine can be relaxing such as peppermint, lavender or chamomile—you can infuse in an herbal tea or very lightly spray a bed sheet with the scent.
- Gentle relaxation massage can be helpful if your migraine isn’t too intense that you are overly sensitive to touch.
- Do consult with a physician/chiropractor/neurologist if your migraines occur frequently or greatly interfere with your ability to enjoy life.