Help Explaining Migraine to Those Closest to You

Patient Expert
Medically Reviewed

Having the support of our loved ones is as big an issue for those of us with migraine disease as good medical care is. No matter how well our migraine management is working, we're going to have times when a migraine knocks the daylights out of us, and we need the support of our family and friends.

Deborah I. Friedman, M.D., M.P.H., who is a migraine and headache specialist and a member of the board of directors of the American Headache Society, has written a piece to help with situations where our loved ones don't understand migraine and how to be supportive and help us when we are having a migraine attack and beyond. In "Your Loved One Has Migraines," s he begins by saying,

"There are few things more distressing than seeing your loved one in pain. Migraine, which causes repeated attacks of severe head pain associated with other disabling symptoms, affects not only the person who has it but also impacts the people close to them."

Dr. Friedman goes on to cover:

  • What is migraine and what causes it?
  • What can make it worse over time?
  • Are there behaviors associated with having migraine?
  • What can help?
  • What's the bottom line?

"Your Loved One Has Migraines" was recently published in the journal Headache, the journal of the American Headache Society, but unlike most of the content in Headache, "Your Loved One Has Migraines" is available to everyone. You can read it on the Headache web site and even download a PDF version, if you wish. Read or download "Your Loved One Has Migraines."

More helpful articles for your family and friends:

Teaching Others About Migraine - A Letter to Use

People Who Don't Have Migraine Can't Understand. Seriously?

Acts of Kindness to Perform for People with Migraines


Friedman, Deborah I., MD, MPH. "Your Loved One Has Migraines." Headache 2016;56:1368-1369.