Do you ever feel like managing Migraine is a full-time job? Migraine management doesn’t have to be that complicated or time-consuming. Once we find an effective treatment plan, It’s simpler that we might think.
We make it complicated when we
- Try to avoid every possible trigger rather than test and confirm our true triggers
- Obsess over every minor change in symptoms
- Track more details than necessary
- Worry about the next Migraine attack
- Worry about what others think or say
When our symptoms improve, we may be tempted to take shortcuts. Skipping meals or medication doses is easy to do when we feel healthy. We rationalize staying up late or indulging in a known food trigger. We become less mindful of known triggers, exposing ourselves to unnecessary risks.
Let go of worry
Worry takes up more time than taking action. Fretting about potential triggers or the next Migraine attack will only make us feel helpless and overwhelmed. Instead, learn to take a matter-of-fact approach to attacks. By planning ahead, we won’t be forced to make spur-of-the-moment decisions. By knowing what to do when Migraine strikes, we eliminate the need to spend all our time worrying about Migraine.
Maintain a toolkit
Getting caught without access to our toolkit adds unnecessary stress. Whether our last Migraine attack was last year or yesterday, we can develop the habit of always having our Migraine toolkit within reach. It’s no different than having our cars stocked with a spare tire or jumper cables. Like emergency car equipment, we may not need our Migraine toolkits for a long time. When we do need it, we will be grateful we kept it well-stocked and ready for action.
Stick to a routine
Don’t be fooled by a long stretch of Migraine-free days. Stick with the basics, Migraine or not. New research tells us that maintaining routine is protective against Migraine. It’s one of the best things we can do to prevent that next attack.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Eat wholesome foods without a lot of artificial additives.
- Get seven to eight hours of restful sleep each night.
- Exercise for 30 minutes each day.
- Take your medication as prescribed.
- Treat breakthrough attacks quickly.
- Keep your doctor appointments.
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Headache disorders counselor and advocate Tammy Rome maintains a private practice specializing in treating clients with Migraine and other headache disorders. She also volunteers as vice chair of the American Headache and Migraine Association and as president of The Cluster Headache Support Group. You can read more of Tammy’s work on her website and follow her on Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.