When you feel a migraine coming on, do you panic? Just think of the symptoms that are about to hit: painful throbbing in the head, vomiting, blurred vision, sensitivity to lights, sounds and even smells, lightheadedness and so on. It’s no wonder that many sufferers are overwhelmed with anxiety about an impending migraine attack.
But, even if a migraine is on its way, there are strategies you can use to lessen its impact. Here are three ways you can cope with a migraine attack and hopefully, find some relief.
1. Take Your Medication As Directed
If you’ve had a history of migraines, you’ve probably spoken with your doctor about which migraine medications to use before the symptoms set in and which to take during an attack.
Some migrainers prefer over-the-counter pain relievers. Ibuprofen, aspirin, and Excedrin can all be effective in decreasing the painful symptoms of migraines. Doctors usually suggest taking a full dosage of the pain reliever at the first sign of a migraine. If the pain persists, be sure to alert your doctor. Going beyond the recommended dosage may cause other dangerous health conditions.
For more severe migraines, doctors often prescribe triptans. This class of prescription medication decreases the swelling of blood vessels in the brain. Some research shows that sufferers should wait until the pain starts to take the triptan medication. This is because the medication is designed to work within one to two hours and taking it too early may encourage breakthrough pain later.
2. Wear Sunglasses – Even Indoors
Most migraine sufferers report a painful sensitivity to light during an attack. This condition, called photophobia, can be brought on by any type of light – sunlight, TV screens, or reflected glare.
If light is a source of discomfort during your attacks, you might find some relief in wearing sunglasses or specialized migraine glasses. MigraLens glasses have been approved by the Migraine Action Association. They’re specially designed to filter out the type of light that is most disturbing to migrainers. FL-41 tinted glasses are another option. These glasses are coated with a special rose-colored filter that seems to be effective for migraine sufferers.
3. Get A Massage
A relaxing massage is great way to prevent migraines, but it’s also useful in treating the condition during an attack. Scientists at the University of Miami Touch Research Institute found that massaging migraine patients with light touch near the head as they lay on their back is very effective during the headache stage. They also reported positive results when the patients’ hands and feet were stimulated with massage.
What techniques or comfort measures do you use to cope with migraine attacks?
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