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Can Migraines Keep You From Working

Kids Experience Unique Stomach Issues With Migraine

How to Prevent Your Migraines

Paula: Can you explain cyclical vomiting and abdominal migraines?

Dr. Starling: Cyclic vomiting syndrome and abdominal migraine are variants of Migraine, and they’re actually more common in our pediatric population. With abdominal migraine, individuals will have episodes of abdominal pain that is usually poorly localized somewhere in the stomach area.

These episodes will come and go, similar to migraine attacks that will come and go. There are patients for whom abdominal Migraine develops into a more chronic problem similar to Chronic Migraine.

Cyclic vomiting syndrome is another Migraine variant where they’ll have episodes where they’re unable to stop vomiting, and then episodes where they’re doing okay in between – similar to having episodic Migraine. Both of these things, as I mentioned, are more common in the pediatric population, but they can be treated effectively with the same types of medications that we use for Migraine, whether they have a headache or not.

That is another important concept: Migraine should not be synonymous to head pain. Migraine is a sensory processing disorder, and so some people have Migraine without any head pain at all, and they may only have nausea, the abdominal pain, all of these other symptoms that talk about.

What Are The Symptoms Of A Migraine

Migraine pain is generally severe. The pain is often isolated to one particular spot or side of the head. Migraines can also cause nausea or vertigo. In severe cases, they may even cause vomiting.

Unlike migraines, tension headaches are generally mild to moderate, steady, and felt throughout or across your head. Tension headaches dont cause nausea or sensitivity to light or sound.

Other common migraine symptoms include:

  • severe, throbbing pain
  • flashing light
  • strobing light

Migraines with aura can even cause short-term vision loss, blind spots, or tunnel vision. Its possible to experience the visual disturbances of an aura without ever feeling a headache.

These symptoms may feel worse when you move around, walk, or climb stairs.

You may also experience neck pain as a symptom of a migraine. Neck pain can be seen as the first symptom of exercise-induced migraines.

You should see your doctor immediately if you have neck pain and a headache along with a fever. You may have meningitis. Meningitis is an infection of the membrane covering the brain.

Can My Employer Refuse To Fulfill My Request For An Accommodation

Under the ADA, your employer is not required to provide you with an accommodation in two situations: 1) if the employer can demonstrate that the accommodation would be an undue hardship for the company and 2) if the employer can demonstrate that your disability poses a direct threat to the health and safety of individuals in the workplace. Both situations are unlikely to apply to women with migraines.

1. What Is an Undue Hardship?

The ADA defines as undue hardship for employers as a situation that would be unduly costly, extensive, substantial or disruptive, or would fundamentally alter the nature or operation of the business. An employers size, financial resources, or the nature of the operations may be factors in determining whether an accommodation represents an undue hardship.

Employers may wrongly believe that workplace accommodations are too expensive, which is often untrue for women with migraines. In fact, 57 percent of accommodations for migraines do not cost anything, and the remaining changes typically cost $500 or less.

2. What Is a Direct Threat?

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How Can I Tell If I Have A Migraine Or Just A Bad Tension

Compared with migraine, tension-type headache is generally less severe and rarely disabling. Compare your symptoms with those in this chart to see what type of headache you might be having.

Migraine vs. bad tension-type headache

Aura before onset of headachex

Note: Rebound headache may have features of tension and/or migraine headache. Adapted from a table produced by the American Council for Headache Education.

Although fatigue and stress can bring on both tension and migraine headaches, migraines can be triggered by certain foods, changes in the body’s hormone levels, and even changes in the weather.

There also are differences in how types of headaches respond to treatment with medicines. Although some over-the-counter drugs used to treat tension-type headaches sometimes help migraine headaches, the drugs used to treat migraine attacks do not work for tension-type headaches for most people.

You can’t tell the difference between a migraine and a tension-type headache by how often they occur. Both can occur at irregular intervals. Also, in rare cases, both can occur daily or almost daily.

Aug How Someone With Chronic Migraine Can Qualify For Social Security Disability

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If you experience chronic migraine that makes it difficult or impossible for you to work you can file a claim for Social Security disability benefits. You will need to provide medical documentation of your illness in order for your claim to be approved. This medical documentation will help support that you are unable to work for at least 12 months, which is a requirement for applying for disability.

Medically Qualifying For Disability Benefits With Migraine

A migraine attack can incapacitate someone for days. The light and sound sensitivity, as well as the physical toll that migraine disease takes on the body, can mean that the person needs days of recovery time. But in order to be approved for disability benefits due to migraine disease, there needs to be an underlying medical condition or a person needs to ask for a Medical Vocational Allowance.

All of the conditions that qualify for Social Security disability benefits are listed in the Social Security Administrations Blue Book, and there is no official listing for migraine disease. However, migraine can be symptoms of other health problems that are listed in the Blue Book. If you experience migraine due to any of these conditions you can be approved for disability benefits based on Blue Book listing for these conditions:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Anxiety
  • Epilepsy

Medical Vocation Allowance And Residual Functional Capacity

Applying For Social Security Disability Benefits

If You Are Denied

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Keep Your Manager Informed

Migraine is a fluctuating and episodic condition and its impact on you at work may vary. Keeping your employer informed of any relevant changes to your condition or treatment can help them to provide you with the necessary support that you need. Your doctor and Occupational Health can support you in this process. You may also want to provide your employer with The Migraine Trusts website and information resources to help debunk any misconceptions or confusion about the condition.

How Common Are Headaches From Computer Screens

It is likely that we all have dealt with the following scenario at one time or another:

The unfortunately truth is that headaches or migraine attacks from the computer screen are a common occurrence, but researchers have had a difficult time pinpointing just how widespread it is for the general population. Most often it is linked to computer vision syndrome, or CVS for short, which specifically refers to visual and other symptoms that result from screen exposure and which may affect as many as 90% of computer users.2

Among those with CVS symptoms, headache is frequently cited as the most prevalenteven though, ironically, it is not directly related to the eye. Researchers from across the globe have found that between 19% to 53% of those with extended exposure to their PC or laptop screen suffer headaches as a frequent side effect in many cases, recurring headache symptoms lasted a week or more.1,4,10 Workers who specifically use the computer as a primary function of their job have also been found to have more headache episodes, although just a few hours of constant use for an extended time period can have the same effect.1,3

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Is My Workplace Causing My Migraines

I teach preschool getting 4 year olds to stay quiet is pretty impossibleI felt that coworkers in the past were not respectful nor understandingThe light, the noise I couldnt take it anymore…if I will be able to handle the busy, bright, fluorescent lighted officeI have an incredible boss who will send me home

For many community members, balancing work and migraines comes down to where you work. Depending on your migraine causes and triggers, the workplace can either encourage or discourage your symptoms- especially when workplace lights, sounds, smells, or activities tend to spark an attack. Although many of you have shared positive experiences with coworkers and employers, some of our community members have found that people in the workplace are not so understanding. To combat your workplace-triggers, we urge you to talk to your employer about workplace accommodations, and know your health and medical rights. If your coworkers lack of empathy is affecting your migraine management, check out this sample letter for explaining migraines to an employer, or consider resources for talking to people about migraine.

How Are Migraines Diagnosed

3 Things You Can Do @ Home & Work to Prevent Headaches | Stanley Chiropractic | Wichita Chiropractor

Your doctor can diagnose migraines by the symptoms you describe. If the diagnosis is not clear, your doctor will perform a physical exam. Your doctor might want to do blood tests or imaging tests, such as an MRI or CAT scan of the brain. These tests can help ensure there are no other causes for the headache. You may also be asked to keep a headache journal. This can help your doctor identify the things that might cause your migraines.

If headache pain is getting in the way of your daily activities, its time to see your family doctor. Read More

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Chiropractic Techniques That Can Help Manage Migraines And Headaches

Migraines and bad headaches are commonly dismissed as ailments that can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers. As mentioned before, drugs can be effective, but they do have some drawbacks. It would be best if you saw a chiropractor.

Hands-on manipulation of the spine can relieve muscle tension and soothe the nerves controlling the blood flow to the brain. Youll get better, so youll be able to make decisions, process emotions, and live your life to the fullest. Moving forward, lets see what chiropractic techniques can help manage migraines and headaches.

Risk Factors To Keep In Mind

Migraines occur most often in adults between ages 25 to 55. Women experience migraines three times more often than men. Women between the ages of 20 and 45, and women who are menstruating are especially susceptible. People with a family history of migraine headaches are also more likely to experience migraines.

Exercise-induced migraines are more likely to occur in people who are exercising in hot, humid weather, or at high altitudes.

You should see your doctor if youre in your 50s and suddenly develop the symptoms of a migraine. People who have migraine headaches very often will have a pattern of having headaches at an earlier age, sometimes even in high school. Headaches that begin later in life need further evaluation to make sure there isnt something else thats causing the headaches.

Your doctor will ask you some questions. Your answers can help them diagnose your condition. They may ask you these questions:

No medical test exists to test for migraines specifically. Your doctor cannot diagnose migraine headaches through:

  • blood tests

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Works For Most: Vitamin B Feverfew Melatonin Butterbur

Vitamin B2: A Belgian study found that 60 per cent of people who took 400 milligrams of this vitamin everyday had half their usual number of migraines.

Feverfew: This popular herb offers mild and transient benefits, according to British researchers, but in a recent study of a feverfew extract containing a consistent level of parthenolide, migraines were reduced from five per month to three. Further research shows there is conflicting evidence on the effectiveness of this herb.

Melatonin: Two-thirds of study participants who took melatonin before going to bed every night for three months said the number of migraines they experienced dropped by 50 per cent.

Butterbur-based remedies: One expert calls these the best safety-tested herbal to date for the treatment of headache. According to the journal Neurology, 68 per cent of those who took a butterbur product called Petadolex saw the number of migraines they experienced drop by 50 per cent.

Got a bad case of indigestion? Try these home remedies.

The Financial Costs Of Migraines

Migraines at Work: Coping With Migraine Pain at Work or ...

While most sufferers experience a migraine attack about once or twice a month, the Migraine Research Foundation reports that about 14 million Americans are affected by debilitating pain, fatigue, and other symptoms on a daily basis. As the eighth leading cause of disability in the world, according to the World Health Organization , migraines may prevent employment entirely and may erode your social life, your enjoyment of hobbies, and even your ability to care for yourself, you home, your pets, or your children.

Given these implications, the costs of chronic migraines obviously cannot all be quantified in dollars, but the financial impact cant be overlooked either. Unlike many chronic illnesses that develop later in life, migraines tend to strike during a persons most productive years. Theyre most common in people ages 25 to 55, according to the WHO, which means they take a tremendous toll on earnings ability. In fact, the Job Accommodation Network estimates that 157 million workdays are lost in the U.S. annually due to migraine headaches.

Diagnostic expenses only skim the surface of ongoing healthcare costs youll face though. Once you have a diagnosis, migraine medications become a major, monthly expenditure. The American Journal of Managed Care reports average prescription costs of more than $160 per month for a single migraine medication, and many patients require multiple drugs to manage symptoms and decrease the frequency of attacks.

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Ways To Curb Headache Triggers At Work

Many jobs — whether because of the nature of the responsibilities or the work environment itself — can worsen headaches in someone with a migraine condition.

Minimizing the impact of work-based triggers may help keep migraines at bay. Here are tips:

  • Drink more water. Dehydration is a common migraine trigger.
  • Limit caffeine. It’s dehydrating and acts as a diuretic. Plus, too much caffeine can be a trigger for some people.
  • Avoid salty foods. You’ll have to drink even more to make up for it.
  • In some jobs — such as teaching or working in a call center — it can be tough to take a bathroom break. In that case, you may need to involve your manager. “This is one circumstance where working with the administrator is important,” Rosen says. Perhaps they can assign someone to cover for a few minutes.
  • Don’t let yourself get hungry. Hunger is a common headache trigger. It’s easy to skip lunch or snacks when you’re under pressure to get things done at work. But that’s a mistake. “Be sure to get that lunch break and make sure you have additional snacks to eat,” Rosen says. Avoid sugary snacks and instead opt for healthier fare, such as nuts, protein bars, and fruit.
  • Check your set-up. If you have a desk job, the ergonomics of your desk matter. Something as simple as setting your computer screen at an appropriate level so you aren’t looking up or down can help prevent headaches.
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