Famous Migraineurs - Santa Claus?

Nancy Harris Bonk Health Guide
  • Being in the throes of the holiday season can occasionally ramp up quite a few things such as stress, feeling overwhelmed, and of course our Migraines. Many of us follow traditions year after year, knowing exactly how our holiday season will play out. Managing and avoiding, when possible, any Migraine triggers can also become one of those traditions. But what if the holiday season is the busiest time of year for you, and you aren't able avoid your triggers? What if you were Santa Claus and had Migraine disease? I'm just asking!


    Santa is a busy man who runs a global business, and Christmas is his biggest event of year. He employs lots and lots of "little helpers" and is totally swamped at holiday time. In addition to being Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and Chief Delivery Man, Santa is married to a lovely woman who helps care for his extended family (all the little helpers) on his compound. In essence, his responsibilities are HUGE! During this hectic season, Santa's plant is open 24/7 to ensure timely delivery to all his "customers." His mechanics work night and day to make sure his sled is ready to fly, and the stable hands put in lots of extra hours too. Of course, this doesn't include all the overtime hours Santa's "little helpers" are putting in. Plus, Santa has Migraine disease.

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    Santa's Migraines are pretty well managed throughout most of the year. He has kept a Migraine diary, which has enabled him to identify and manage many of his triggers. Unfortunately, this wasn't done until recently when he found a really good Migraine specialist to work with. Working with this new doctor, he has been diligent in avoiding the triggers he can. Santa usually attempts to start this demanding season being well rested, well fed and fairly stress free.


    But what about all the Migraine triggers Santa can't avoid? Let's talk about some of those Santa may run across each day:

    • He's working extra long hours and functioning under a lot of additional work related stress.
    • He gets up earlier than he normally does, and is going to bed a bit later than he should, so his sleep hygiene is being affected.
    • Staying hydrated and not missing meals doesn't seem to a problem because Mrs. Claus is always there to provide a beverage and snack when needed.
    • Sound - can you imagine the noise the factory produces at this time of year? I'm not sure there are any earplugs made that will stop that kind of commotion!
    • And what about the jingle bells on his sled?
    • Then there are the lights; everywhere he looks there are lights - blinking lights, bright lights, flashing light on trees, his home, and even Rudolph's red nose!

    Delivery night - his biggest and most important occasion of the year - may hold one of Santa's most unavoidable Migraine triggers; the weather. This is due to changes in the barometric pressure. Not only may his Migraines be triggered by weather changes before he starts off on his journey, but how about all those changes in air pressure while he is flying around the globe in his sled? What if he hits bad weather while he is out there? Can you imagine what his head must feel like by the time he gets home? I'm sure some years are probably better than others, and he just keeps his fingers crossed for good weather each year.


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    When Santa gets home from his exhausting, yet exhilarating night, hopefully his head feels just fine. But, if he has a Migraine that hasn't been aborted with Axert  (the triptan he uses to abort his Migraines), he can certainly work with his Migraine specialist to relieve his pain. This can be done with many different treatments and/or IV infusions. With the love and support of Mrs. Claus and his "family" Santa can go on to prepare for another exciting year. 


    Santa is a lucky man - he has a wonderfully supportive family, a fun and rewarding job, doctors who work with him as partners in his health care and a good Migraine management plan. Every Migraineur should be so lucky.


    Ho, ho, ho! 



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    © The HealthCentral Network, 2010
    Last updated December 4, 2010
Published On: December 03, 2010