Migraines and Teens

Nancy Harris Bonk Health Guide
  • We recently read about a mother's struggle with her sixteen-year-old daughter and Migraine disease. Being a teenager has its own challenges. Getting enough sleep, eating properly and making good decisions are just a few of the daily trials a teen goes through. Having your mother tell you what to do is part of life at this stage.


    This particular teen seems to be very lucky. She is under "excellent care" from a neurologist, and currently has a good Migraine prevention plan in place. What seems to be the problem? This teen doesn't seem willing to make certain lifestyle changes to keep her Migraines under control, and this is getting to mom.

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    This would be a great opportunity for mom to educate her daughter about Migraine as a disease. Making lifestyle changes is part of living with the disease. If changes in your sleeping patterns can trigger a Migraine, then go to bed and get up at the same time every day, including weekends and holidays. Yes, even teens CAN do that Big Smile . If dehydration can trigger a Migraine, bring a bottle of water to school, with a note from mom if need be. Migraine and Headache - Tips for Living Well All Year


    Teenagers with diabetes must accept and manage their disease because of possible long-term consequenses. Let's say a teen with diabetes loves banana splits, but they spike her glucose levels. Knowing that poor disease management could eventually lead to loss of vision or even loss of limb in the future would she still eat them? Yes, some teens will do it regardless, but we need to teach them better.


    Migraine is just as much a disease as diabetes. It increases our risk of stroke and other cardiovascular events. More than 1,400 more US women who have Migraine with aura die each year with cardiovascular diseases than women who do not have Migraine. Take a look at these Migraine with Aura Linked To Cardiovascular Disease in Women and

    Migraine and Stroke Risk.


    At sixteen, it's time for a teen to start taking responsibility for their health -- with the guidance, patience and love of their family. As a mother, I'd rather have my teen learn these life skills at home in a safe, nurturing environment before she enters the harsh reality of the real world.

Published On: April 11, 2008