You know the tell-tale signs all too well: sensitivity to light or smells, throbbing pain on one side of your head, dizziness, visual disturbances; all of which point to one thing: a migraine. For sufferers of migraines, the condition is not just a bad headache.
Migraines cause a number of neurological symptoms that can cause a severe loss in quality of life if not managed efficiently. Simply put, migraines are a serious chronic condition that can affect both your work and personal life. Managing chronic pain can put a damper on your mood, energy, and sleep.
While approximately one in four women will experience a migraine at some point in their lives, there are a number of effective ways to deal with them when they attack.
1. Drink Water
Are you drinking enough water during the day, especially after a workout? Dehydration can cause migraines in individuals who are not properly hydrating on a daily basis.
If you feel thirsty, that means your body is already slightly dehydrated. Our brains need electrolytes and water to function properly and keep inflammation at bay.
According to a 2014 study, without enough water, your brain tissue can actually shrink and increase your sensitivity to pain.
2. Unwind in the Dark
Overstimulation and constant exposure to artificial light can cause migraines in some people. An effective way to combat migraines often involves removing any external stimuli that may be aggravating the situation.
Switch off the lights and lay down in cool, dark room for a while. Try progressive muscle relaxation as you lay quietly, tensing and releasing muscles in your face, neck and shoulders.
3. Eat on a Schedule
Lack of food can also trigger migraines, especially in children and adolescents. Prone to skipping meals and waiting until they’re starving to eat something, kids can actually be causing avoidable migraines.
If you or your child suffer from migraines, make a commitment to eating three meals a day and snacking on nutritious foods between meals. Try and eat at the same time everyday, avoiding foods high in sugar or salt.