What Makes For The Most Effective Ice Pack For Headache
That depends on the situation and the user. In general, ice packs for headaches containing water are not flexible, which means they can’t wrap around your noggin. Many disposable chemical cold packs lose their heat quickly, although one of our finds claims it stays cool for eight hours.
Most gel-based ice packs, while easily conforming around the head and neck, don’t freeze and therefore warm up too quickly.
If you are experiencing frequent attacks, it’s time to invest in a more serious ice pack for headache and Migraine. Rotating ice packs simply isn’t practical at this point continuous relief is necessary.
With wearable ice packs, it’s also easy to get up and go to the bathroom or get a glass of water without removing it. Wearable hats and wraps keep ice in place while you sit, walk, carry something or try to sleep. . Many can be used on other parts of the body as well.
Do I Apply Ice Or Heat For The Relief Of My Headaches/migraines
When you are suffering from a headache or a migraine you will do just about anything to try to ease them. The most common thing that people will reach for after a pain killer will be an ice pack or a heat bag. So which is more effective to help relieve a headache/migraine?
Interestingly the answer is.neither.
The most common cause of headaches and migraines are dysfunctions in the upper 3 joints of the neck. Due to the chronic nature of these conditions, ice and/or heat will not help to alleviate these joints. However, one of the biggest things that is important during a headache/migraine attack is comfort! Therefore if you feel as though ice or heat is comforting or soothing, it certainly will not make the pain worse and by making yourself feel more at ease, this will in fact help your headache/migraine pass quicker.
The most important thing when applying an ice pack or heat bag is to never place them on the front of your neck. You have a lot of important structures in through the front of the neck that should not be affected by either ice or heat. Also, due to the top 3 joints because the cause of most headaches/migraines, if you place an ice pack or heat bag on the back of your neck, often it will cause your head to poke forwards, further encouraging these headache/migraine inducing dysfunctions. Therefore when applying ice/heat, applying it to the lower neck/shoulder area for maximum benefit and comfort.
Myth : Its Okay To Apply Ice To Your Bare Skin
Regardless of how little time you leave ice on the skin, its not a good idea to place it directly on there in the first place. Using ice or an ice pack directly on the skin can cause severe frostbite in minutes with long-lasting effects. When ice comes in contact with skin, it forms ice crystals on skin cells and decreases blood flow, depriving the tissues of oxygen that produces underlying and permanent damage. Instead, use a protective layer such as a cloth or a sleeve into which you can insert your hot or cold pack. Alternatively, you could use direct to skin products such as clay wraps or oat bags that are made with a soft fabric.
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Migraine Be Koool Gel Sheets
Disposable adhesive patches with cooling compound built-in.
- Fit: One size fits everyone. Can use one on the forehead and another on the neck if needed.
- Function: Adhesive patches stay firmly in place. Disposable means they’re single-use, less environmentally friendly. Expect cooling, not coldness. The manufacturer says they stay cool up to eight hours.
- Fashion: Very thin, easy to disguise under a hat or scarf if you need to wear it in public.
- Storage: Fits in a backpack or purse to start relieving pain if you’re out in public or on an airplane when an attack strikes.
- Price: $12.75 for a pack of 4 sheets
- Our Rating: **
Compression cold wrap headband developed by an entrepreneur whose wife also lives with Migraine.
- Fit: Soft fabric hugs the head with compression via Velcro closure. One size fits all.
- Function: Has a vinyl side for intense cold and a felt side for moderate cold. Gel stays cold for up to an hour, with easy replacement ice packs.
- Fashion: Looks more like a sports headband with a logo, which makes it a good pick for men. Could fit under a loose-knit beanie or scarf if you wanted to wear it in public.
- Storage: No freezer packaging or carrying case.
- Price: $29.95 + S& H
Some Believe That Forcing A
But making yourself get a brain freeze, what some people call an ice cream headache, can actually stop a migraine for some people.
Migraines are tricky once they begin, it can be near impossible to get them to stop or go away. Many people have learned tricks, however, that help them to control their migraines. Using essential oils, placing an ice pack on the head or back of the neck, and massaging the neck or scalp are just a few examples. But perhaps the strangest home remedy for migraine is the brain freeze technique.
A brain freeze is generally something we avoid. The instantaneous pain in the head that happens after eating ice cream or slurping an ice-cold drink through a straw is a common experience, and it doesnt feel very good. But making yourself get a brain freeze, what some people call an ice cream headache, can actually stop a migraine for some people.
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Offering Both Compression And Cooling Therapy The Headache Hat Is Incredibly Versatile And Can Be Worn Multiple Ways
Have you ever found yourself wanting to squeeze your head in the midst of a migraine, or pressing a cold glass against your forehead for relief? The Headache Hat is designed to offer both cooling and compression, to help relieve the pain of headaches, neck tension, and more.
The hat, which is essentially a wrap, is made of cotton, spandex, and micro fleece, so it’s comfortable to wear. Simply freeze the specialized ice pack, insert it into the hat, and enjoy the cooling relief. The ice pack’s individually wrapped cubes shape themselves around your head, making the hat comfortable to wear.
This hat is one of my favorite go-to items for migraines, but I also use it after long days of working at the computer. It’s highly versatile, and you can wear it in many different ways including as a face mask, an eye mask, and a neck pillow.
The fact that you can pull down part of the hat as an eye mask is beneficial when migraines cause light sensitivity. I’ve found that the combination of cooling and compression has been particularly helpful in relieving my migraines.
The Headache Hat has a 4.5 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, based on 918 reviews. , “The ice feels really good, but what I think I especially love the most is the way that you can tighten the stretch around for tension in the right places. I can either cover my eyes and listen to soft music to relax, or keep my eyes open so I can get things done when necessary.”
Taking A Bath Works To Relax Your Muscles Which Might Just Ease The Sensation Of Pain In Your Head Too
Taking a hot bath has also been known to make it easier for people to fall asleep, which would surely be a welcome event when your head is killing you. One way to take your bath experience to the next level would be to add epsom salts to the tub. Epsom salts are filled with magnesium, which has been associated with a number of health benefits, including its ability to work as a potential remedy for headaches, according to Healthline.
But taking a bath isn’t the only form of temperature therapy that might work to cure your headache, and it’s not just hot temperatures that can help.
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How To Treat A Migraine Using Everyday Things That Help
Besides the above acute treatment using ice and heat simultaneously, lets talk about how to treat a migraine and prevent further attacks by establishing some lifestyle changes:
1.Keep a migraine journal and not just a food list. When you get a migraine, write down what you can remember about the last three days. Who visited, or who made you angry at work? Did anything bother you? Did anyone bother you? Did you miss a meal, or have a bad night’s sleep? By keeping track you might see a pattern emerge.
2.Keep regular eating and sleeping routines. Wake up and go to sleep at the same time every day, and yes even on weekends no sleeping in.
And eat regular and nutritional meals. Snack throughout the day between meals to keep your blood sugar levels balanced. Never skip meals. You might like to read my article on migraine headaches nutrition.
3.Practice relaxation techniques. Keep it simple. Exhale as much as you can and let the breath come back in and take a full, deep breath. Hold it for 5 10 seconds, dont let stress happen, just let it be comfortable, and then slowly breathe out. If you can, repeat this up to ten times and close your eyes.
I use relaxation CDs – for some of my favorite ones. I’ve done a whole bunch of meditations for you… here’s the link.
5.If you havent already stop smoking. Smoking is known to cause blood vessel constriction. Nasty mix for migraineurs.
When Out And About
- I find its mostly fluorescent lighting that messes me up. I wear my sunglasses at night and indoors at stores, restaurant etc. Bare bulbs are violent…that’s the word that best describes it for me.
- I wore sunglasses in a cinema once, as I didn’t want my kids to miss the film.
- Hoodie up indoors at the mall AND double diphenhydramine for sinus pressure and allergies which make the migraine worse, especially during the spring and fall weather blowout months.
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Can Cold Packs Ease Migraine Pain
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The word ” headache doesnt really do justice to a migraine. Migraines dont just ache they take over. Once the pain starts, its hard to think about anything else.
Millions of migraineurs tackle their pain with prescription or over-the-counter drugs. But there are other options. For about $4, you can buy a pack of four WellPatch Migraine pads from Mentholatum. Users are instructed to stick a pad on their forehead as soon as pain starts. The pad is filled with a watery gel that starts evaporating when the package is opened. The evaporation cools the skin beneath the pad, a sensation thats enhanced by a subtle scent of menthol. According to the package, the cooling lasts up to eight hours.
Migraine Be Koool pads, a very similar product from Kobayashi Healthcare, also sell for about $1 each. Like the WellPatch Migraine pads, Migraine BeKoool pads stick directly to the forehead and cool the skin through evaporation. And, like the WellPatch, they have a little menthol for extra cooling.
The claims: The WellPatch website says that the pad cools and soothes the discomfort associated with migraine. Todd Cantrell, director of marketing at Mentholatum, clarifies that the pads dont really treat the migraine itself but can make the whole experience a little more bearable.
Curious about a consumer health product? Send an e-mail to .
Read more at latimes.com/skeptic.
The Impact Of Migraine On Education
Migraine can have a significant impact on a childs attendance and performance in school. Chronic migraine attacks can disrupt a childs ability to go to school. A child should not have to miss out on school due to their migraine.
It can also impact the education of adults living with migraine, making it harder for them to learn and study.
Support from schools, colleges and universities can be decisive in enabling them to successfully learn with migraine.
32 daysChildren with migraine take on average between 32 days and three months off from school due to their migraine compared to the general population who take between three and 13 days off per year
25,000,000It is estimated that the UK population loses 25 million days from work or school each year because of migraine
My first memory of having a migraine attack was of holding my head at primary school, it was all I could do to stop it dropping and hitting the old wooden desk
“My hemiplegic migraine was the worst throughout sixth form and as a result my performance and attendance at school werent great”
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Rest In A Quiet Dark Room
Many people with migraine report sensitivity to light and sound, which can make headaches worse. According to a study published in Nature Neuroscience, the pain caused by light can be traced to a group of light-sensing cells in the eye called intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells , which help maintain sleep-wake cycles and pupil response to light. In rats, these cells converge on brain cells that transmit pain.
Exposure to light activates the ipRGC cells and the pain-transmitting cells, and the cells remain activated for several minutes. The researchers theorize that that mechanism could be the reason headache pain gets worse in the light and improves 20 to 30 minutes after being in the dark.
Go to a room thats dark and quiet, and you may be able to sleep, Dr. Good says. Not all headaches respond to sleep, she notes, but the chemicals released in your brain during sleep may help ease your pain. Also, she says, if youre sensitive to sounds, blocking them out could help.
Cold Therapy Is A Common Measure
and an old one: Cold therapy as a migraine relief measure was first documented as early as 1849. 1
In fact cold therapy has been cited as the most common self-administered pain-relief measure used by those suffering from migraine without aura and the second most common measure applied by those experiencing migraine with aura. 2
However, there are few clinical studies on the use of cold therapy in migraine, and exactly how cold works to ease a migraine remains poorly understood. Further, cold therapy may not be effective for all migraines or in all individuals. 3
One clinical study of 100 migraine sufferers showed that 75 percent found that cold therapy provided them with at least some relief, but of course more studies are needed.
Understanding some of the theories regarding how cold therapy may make migraine sufferers feel more comfortable can enable you to discuss this potential option with your doctor.
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The Best Way To Attack Head Pain Is To Keep Track Of When And Where It Tends To Happen
By tracking your head pain , you can slowly tick off possible reasons for the pain. For example,if you get a headache whenever you’re super hungry, it could be due to low blood sugar. Or, if you get a headache at the end of the day and realize you’ve only had a glass of water, there’s a good chance it has something to do with dehydration. Above all, make sure you talk to a medical professional about it, especially if your headaches are getting in the way of your life on a frequent basis.
For now, you might as well take a hot bath. Even if you don’t have a headache, soaking up the bubbles after a long day is always an amazing way to relax.
Pay Attention To Advance Notice
The prodromal phase of a migraine, the first to occur, can alert you that a migraine attack is imminent. People may experience these or other symptoms:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Food cravings
- Sensitivity to light, sounds, or smells
Getting to know premonitory symptoms like these and others is important, but remember that what you experience early on in a migraine is personal to you. Dizziness, irritability, ringing in the ears, seeing spots of light, and other symptoms are all worth paying attention to.
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Tips To Ease Migraine Pain
Even if you avoid triggers and practice healthy habits, you may still experience migraine attacks. Here are some home remedies that might bring relief.
When a migraine attack sets in, all you want is relief. For some people, taking migraine medication can help ease the pain, says , an associate professor of neurology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore.
But is there anything else you can do to help shorten the attack or make the symptoms more bearable until the medication starts to work?
If youre in need of migraine first aid, try the following suggestions. Most of these interventions are free and come with no side effects.
Brain Freeze: Does It Actually Work As A Home Remedy For Migraine Headaches
You can find all kinds of anecdotal reports that intentionally causing a brain freeze works to stop a migraine in its tracks and relieves pain. Many people find that eating ice cream, drinking ice-cold water, slurping a slushy drink, or holding cold water on their upper palate is effective.
Even people who find no relief from medications and other common migraine treatment recommendations have reported migraine relief from this seemingly strange yet simple strategy. But how could it possibly work?
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