Home | Health | Pain & Pain Management | Migraines | How to Get Fewer Migraines

How to Get Fewer Migraines

by Contributing Writer
  • Overview

    Migraine headaches can be severely debilitating. In addition to intense pain, symptoms of migraines include nausea, vomiting, disorientation and confusion. Most migraine headaches occur on one side of the head and feature pulsating or vibrating sensations. While anyone may experience migraines, they are more common in women. Hormonal fluctuations, certain foods, sleep issues, environmental factors and stress are all believed to contribute to migraines. Thankfully, there are several things you can do to get fewer migraines.
 
  • Step 1

    Determine which things trigger migraines for you by keeping a food and activity diary for one month. For some people, particular foods will trigger migraine headaches. Avoid such foods altogether. Even smelling certain foods is enough to start a migraine, in some individuals.
  • Step 2

    Maintain a regular sleep schedule. Irregular sleep patterns can trigger migraines. Try to go to bed at the same time every night, and rise at the same time as well. To avoid migraines, at least seven hours of nightly sleep is recommended.
  • Step 3

    Exercise. Cardiovascular exercise has been shown to relieve tension and pressure associated with migraine headaches. Aim for at least 30 minutes of exercise, three to four times per week. Make sure to warm up thoroughly at the beginning of your exercise routine. Gradually raising your heart rate will keep headaches at bay.
  • Step 4

    Talk to your doctor about hormonal medications. Certain hormones, particularly estrogen, lead to migraine headaches. If you are on birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy pills, they may be contributing to your migraines. Discuss alternative treatments with your doctor.
  • Step 5

    Stay away from flashing lights. Bright, flashing lights commonly trigger migraine headaches. If you are in an area that has such lights, cover your eyes with a dark cover.
  • Step 6

    Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. Avoid processed foods whenever possible as chemicals present in them may cause migraines. Try to consume fresh, natural foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains as much as possible.
  • Step 7

    Avoid cigarettes and excessive alcohol. Cigarette smoking can cause and exacerbate migraine headaches. Likewise, too much alcohol consumption can trigger migraines.
  • Step 8

    Maintain proper posture. Poor posture such as hunching your shoulders or slouching your neck can lead to more frequent migraines. Keep shoulders relaxed and your spine in a neutral position while sitting and standing.
  • 3
  • Sleep Exercise Healthy diet
  • Sleep
  • Exercise
  • Healthy diet
  • Keep a record of your migraines. Write down the date, time of day and descriptive details regarding your migraines. Take this record with you when you see your doctor.
  • Keep a record of your migraines. Write down the date, time of day and descriptive details regarding your migraines. Take this record with you when you see your doctor.
  • Avoid chocolate and red wine if you get frequent migraines. Both are known as trigger foods for migraines.
  • Avoid chocolate and red wine if you get frequent migraines. Both are known as trigger foods for migraines.

References & Resources