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How To Lower Migraine Pain

Take Time For Yourself

Headache Treatments : How to Reduce Migraines

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We all need time to ourselves. Set aside a period of time every day that is just for you. Whether you meditate, listen to a relaxation or meditation app, exercise a bit, or just sit quietly doing nothing, use this time to focus on you, how youre feeling, and what you need. This self-care will pay off, leaving you more relaxed and aware of yourself.

Preventative Medication And Therapies

If you experience frequent migraines, your GP might discuss preventative medication options with you.

It is important to note that preventatives for migraines are not pain medication, but help to reduce the number of migraines. They take time to work, so the minimum time period required may be three to six months. Contact your GP or specialist for further information. All of these treatments have their advantages and disadvantages and some of the medications might not be suitable for everybody.

You might find that this medication reduces the frequency and severity of your attacks but does not stop them completely. You will need to continue your other migraine treatments when you experience an attack.

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends that GPs and specialists should consider the following drugs and therapies if they think you might benefit from preventative treatment:

Beta blocking drugs

These drugs are traditionally used to treat angina and high blood pressure. It has been found that certain beta-blockers prevent migraine attacks. Beta-blockers are unsuitable for people with certain conditions.

Topiramate

This drug is typically prescribed for the treatment of epilepsy but has also been found to help reduce the frequency of migraines. Again, it is not suitable for everyone. In particular, women who are pregnant or thinking about getting pregnant should be advised of the associated side effects.

Amitriptyline

Acupuncture

Botulinum toxin type A

What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider

  • Will my child grow out of their migraines?
  • What medications do you recommend for me?
  • What should I change about my lifestyle to prevent my migraine headaches?
  • Should I get tested?
  • What type of migraine do I have?
  • What can my friends and family do to help?
  • Are my migraines considered chronic?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Migraine headaches can be devastating and make it impossible to go to work, school or experience other daily activities. Fortunately, there are some ways to possibly prevent a migraine and other ways to help you manage and endure the symptoms. Work with your healthcare provider to keep migraines from ruling your life.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 03/03/2021.

References

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Tips To Avoid A Migraine

Once youve had a migraine, you will want to do whatever it takes to make sure you dont experience it again. There are some simple things you can do to help avoid a migraine from menopause in the future

Learn what your migraine triggers are. Specialists recommend keeping a migraine journal so you can keep track of how often you are experiencing these headaches, as well as try to learn what is responsible for causing them.

Once you know what your triggers are, do your very best to avoid them. You wont be able to avoid every potential stressor, but you can certainly cut down on cheese or drink less coffee if it helps to curb your migraines.

Make sure you are getting enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can lead to all sorts of problems, including stress and migraines.

Talk to your doctor about medication options. There are plenty available, and you and your doctor can work together to find one that will work for you.

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Massage To Treat A Migraine

How to reduce Migraine Headaches

Massaging is one of the best way to treat migraine and headaches. It effectively blocks pain signals sent to the brain and also boosts serotonin activity that regulates some serotonin receptors. This is how it helps in reducing the frequency of migraine as well as its symptoms. This is one of the most affordable amongst all the home remedies for migraine. Try to get a scented oil and mix it with peppermint and ask someone to give a gentle massage on your head with first two fingers in a circular motion.

If you dont have scented oil follow the steps to make it at home to treat migraine and headache. Take 2 tablespoons of hot sesame oil in small bowl. Mix in ½ teaspoon of cinnamon and cardamom powder. Mix it well and leave it for a few minutes. Pour this mixture on the head and affected area. Give a gentle massage for 10 minutes. Repeat this for a week once in a day.

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Lifestyle Changes May Curtail Migraine Pain

Tight muscles and stress are among the leading triggers of migraine pain. There are actions you can take that can improve your pain. A self-assessment of your daily activities can help you identify triggers.

You should consider whether any of the following is a contributing factor in your migraine pain:

  • Improper ergonomics at work
  • High levels of stress or anxiety
  • Loss in overall physical flexibility
  • Joint disease
  • Food allergies

What Medicines Help Relieve Migraine Pain

For mild to moderate migraines, over-the-counter medicines that may help relieve migraine pain include:

  • aspirin
  • acetaminophen
  • an acetaminophen, aspirin, and caffeine combination
  • ibuprofen
  • naproxen
  • ketoprofen

People who have more severe migraines may need to try abortive prescription medicines. A medicine called ergotamine can be effective alone or combined with other medicines. Dihydroergotamine is related to ergotamine and can be helpful. Other prescription medicines for migraines include sumatriptan, zolmitriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, almotriptan, eletriptan, and frovatriptan.

If the pain wont go away, stronger pain medicine may be needed, such as a narcotic, or medicines that contain a barbiturate . These medicines can be habit-forming and should be used cautiously. Your doctor may prescribe these only if they are needed and only for a short period of time.

Recommended Reading: How To Wean Off Nortriptyline For Migraines

How To Get Rid Of A Headache Naturally

A lot of factors such as stress, food intolerances, lack of sleep can trigger headaches. Knowing and identifying which factor caused your headache or migraine can help you tackle it accordingly and get rid of it faster. While there are medications that work to relieve headaches, you can also try a few of these natural headache treatments at home. Below are a few ways that you can get rid of a headache naturally.

Ways To Reduce A Migraine

How Supplementing WIth Magnesium Daily Can Help Reduce Migraine Pain

If you are suffering through migraines from menopause, here are ten ways to help reduce a migraine.

  • If it is not a trigger of yours, try caffeine. Either a small cup of coffee, or a migraine headache medication containing caffeine.
  • Rest in a quiet room. Close the door to dampen down any loud noises.
  • Make sure the room is dark. Draw the curtains and shut off the lamps.
  • Try temperature changes. Take a warm shower or use a heating pad on your neck. Alternatively, use a cool rag on your forehead or wherever the pain is worst.
  • If the motion doesnt make you sick, try some neck rolls and head turns to release the tension in the muscles in your neck.
  • Try to relax. Practice some meditation or guided breathing exercises.
  • Have a family member or friend massage your neck and shoulder muscles.
  • Give acupressure a try. Use your thumbs to apply pressure at the base of your skull. Rub in small circles to try to relieve the pain.
  • If you can travel, consider having an acupuncture session. An acupuncturist can place needles in specific spots to help alleviate the pain you are feeling.
  • Sleep. If you can, try to fall asleep so that you can rest the migraine headache away without being bothered by stimuli.
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    How Are Migraines Diagnosed

    To diagnose a migraine, your healthcare provider will get a thorough medical history, not just your history of headaches but your familys, too. Also, they’ll want to establish a history of your migraine-related symptoms, likely asking you to:

    • Describe your headache symptoms. How severe are they?
    • Remember when you get them. During your period, for example?
    • Describe the type and location of your pain. Is the pain pounding? Pulsing? Throbbing?
    • Remember if anything makes your headache better or worse.
    • Tell how often you get migraine headaches.
    • Talk about the activities, foods, stressors or the situations that may have brought on the migraine.
    • Discuss what medications you take to relieve the pain and how often you take them.
    • Tell how you felt before, during and after the headache.
    • Remember if anyone in your family gets migraine headaches.

    Your healthcare provider may also order blood tests and imaging tests to make sure there are no other causes for your headache. An electroencephalogram may be ordered to rule out seizures.

    I Get Migraines Right Before My Period Could They Be Related To My Menstrual Cycle

    More than half of migraines in women occur right before, during, or after a woman has her period. This often is called “menstrual migraine.” But, just a small fraction of women who have migraine around their period only have migraine at this time. Most have migraine headaches at other times of the month as well.

    How the menstrual cycle and migraine are linked is still unclear. We know that just before the cycle begins, levels of the female hormones, estrogen and progesterone, go down sharply. This drop in hormones may trigger a migraine, because estrogen controls chemicals in the brain that affect a woman’s pain sensation.

    Talk with your doctor if you think you have menstrual migraine. You may find that medicines, making lifestyle changes, and home treatment methods can prevent or reduce the pain.

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    What Is A Migraine

    A migraine is a severe, often throbbing, headache that tends to occur mainly on one side of the head, according to McMahon. Migraines are also accompanied by other symptoms. These may include nausea, potential for vomiting, light and sound sensitivity, aversion to odors, as well as confusion or mental clouding, he adds.

    You might experience vision disturbances, such as flashes of light or blind spots before migraines take hold. This is called migraine with aura or classic migraine. Most people, however, have common migraine or migraine without aura .

    Massage The Pain Away

    How to relieve headaches in 2020

    A regular massage may seem like a luxury, but when a migraine strikes, it can be the best way to relive all that’s built up in your head.

    Learn how to give yourself a calming and pain relieving massage, and you can prevent your migraines from growing worse, quickly. As you stretch and massage both the neck and the base of the scalp, you will stimulate blood flow and relaxation, sending the pain away from your head.

    Check out Theory & Practice of Therapeutic Massage for more on how to relieve the pain of headaches and migraines through massage.

    Image via Shutterstock

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    Relationship Of Poor Posture With Headache And Backache

    If you often find yourself slouching while standing or sitting, this can strain the muscles in the neck, back of the head, upper part of back and jaw, and result in the exertion of extra pressure to the nerves of these areas.

    As a consequence, poor posture causes pain in the back of the head, front of head, neck and upper part of your back. It also causes muscles tightening and straining which exacerbate the episode of migraine headache.

    What Are Some Migraine Risk Factors And Triggers

    Some things make you more likely to get migraine headaches . Other things may bring on a migraine .

    Common migraine risk factors include the following:

    • Family history: You are much more likely to have migraines if one or both of your parents had migraines.
    • Sex: Women are more likely than men to have migraines.
    • Age: Most people have their first migraine during adolescence, but migraines can start at any age, usually before age 40.

    Common migraine triggers include the following:

    • Food and drink: Certain food and drink may cause migraines. Dehydration and dieting or skipping meals may also trigger migraines.
    • Hormone changes: Women may experience migraines related to their menstrual cycles, to menopause, or to using hormonal birth control or hormone replacement therapy.
    • Stress: Stress may trigger migraines. Stress includes feeling overwhelmed at home or work, but your body can also be stressed if you exercise too much or dont get enough sleep.
    • Senses: Loud sounds, bright lights , or strong smells may trigger migraines.
    • Medicines: Certain medicines may trigger migraines. If you think your migraines might be related to your medicine, talk to your doctor. Your doctor may be able to prescribe a different medicine.
    • Illness: Infections, such as the cold or the flu, may trigger migraines, especially in children.

    Foods that may trigger migraines:

    • aged, canned, cured, or processed meat
    • aged cheese
    • soy sauce

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    When Its Time To See A Doctor

    Every person experiences migraine differently. The key is to find a treatment that works for you. If migraines are disrupting your day-to-day life and you cant control them with at-home or over-the-counter treatments, then its time to see a doctor.

    If headache is frequent enough or disabling enough to cause a degree of dysfunction missing work or family activities, for example then its reasonable for you to discuss migraines with your healthcare provider, says McMahon.

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  • Jesse Ford
  • Four Ways To Reduce Migraine Pain And Frequency

    Remedies to Get Rid of Headaches Naturally [Reduce Migraine Pain Using Home Remedies]

    By Angie Rakes, MD, Pain medicine specialist Published May 14, 2019

    Almost everyone experiences a headache now and then. But if youre a migraine sufferer, you know the difference.

    Migraine headaches are one of the most severe forms of headaches. They often cause severe throbbing on one side of the head and may also cause vomiting, nausea and sensitivity to light and sound.

    Although there is no cure for migraines, the right medications and/or therapies can help reduce the pain and frequency of migraines.

    Headache specialists are here!

    Many people dont seek medical advice soon enough for their migraines and tend to overmedicate. People who take over-the-counter medications on a regular basis may experience rebound headaches, and in rare cases, may develop toxicities in the liver and kidneys.

    Here are four therapies that have shown to be effective in reducing migraines:

    Abortive medications The key to treating migraines is to stopping or aborting them before they become full-blown. There are several abortive medications that are very effective at stopping a migraine if taken with the first sign of its onset.

    Preventative medications These are taken daily for patients that suffer two or more headaches a week and can help lessen the frequency and severity of headaches.

    The key to managing headaches is not to ignore them. Seek out medical evaluation and treatment if they should continue to occur.

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    Exercises For Migraine Reduction

    The creation of a migraine treatment plan begins with a thorough evaluation by the physical therapist. The therapist will ask about any diagnostic tests that have been conducted, the frequency of the pain, pain medications you have tried, and details of your overall symptoms. Measuring your necks range of motion and a postural assessment are also usually completed.

    Based on your evaluation, exercises may include the following:

    • Cervical Retraction, Flexion, Side-Bending, and Rotation: Improving flexibility and improving range of motion to release tension in the neck
    • Rhomboid Strengtheners: Increasing the support of the upper back and help hold proper alignment
    • Pectoral Stretches: Lengthening chest muscles to help posture and decrease pain

    Tai chi, yoga, isometric, and other low-impact exercises are often beneficial for migraine sufferers. Take note of any exercise or movement that you believe may lead to a migraine. You should consult your physical therapist or doctor before starting any exercise program.

    Theories About Migraine Pain

    Older theories about migraines suggested that symptoms were possibly due to fluctuations in blood flow to the brain. Now many headache researchers realize that changes in blood flow and blood vessels don’t initiate the pain, but may contribute to it.

    Current thinking regarding migraine pain has moved more toward the source of the problem, as improved technology and research have paved the way for a better understanding. Today, it is widely understood that chemical compounds and hormones, such as serotonin and estrogen, often play a role in pain sensitivity for migraine sufferers.

    One aspect of migraine pain theory explains that migraine pain happens due to waves of activity by groups of excitable brain cells. These trigger chemicals, such as serotonin, to narrow blood vessels. Serotonin is a chemical necessary for communication between nerve cells. It can cause narrowing of blood vessels throughout the body.

    When serotonin or estrogen levels change, the result for some is a migraine. Serotonin levels may affect both sexes, while fluctuating estrogen levels affect women only.

    For women, estrogen levels naturally vary over the life cycle, with increases during fertile years and decreases afterwards. Women of childbearing age also experience monthly changes in estrogen levels. Migraines in women are often associated with these fluctuating hormone levels and may explain why women are more likely to have migraines than men.

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    Why Are Migraines Less Common In Men

    Men are three times less likely to experience migraines than women. Research suggests that even with migraines, the pain is less severe than in women.

    There are many reasons men have less migraines, including differences in genetics, migraine triggers, and levels of estrogen in the body.

    This article explains why and how migraines are different in men than women.

    The hormone estrogen is closely linked to migraines. There are three types of estrogens:

    • Estradiol
    • Estriol
    • Estrone

    Estrogen is found in both the male and female bodies. Some research has shown that men who suffer from frequent migraines have higher levels of estradiol in their bodies than men who dont get migraines.

    Studies have shown that fluctuating levels of estrogen, which are common during the menstrual cycle and pregnancy, can trigger migraines.

    It is not clear why the fluctuations in estrogen lead to a migraine attack. Some research suggests it may be related to the effects of estrogen on the neurotransmitter serotonin, which regulates pain and mood.

    Estrogen can also alter blood pressure and blood vessels two factors that have been linked to migraines.

    While the number of reported migraines in men is low, the prevalence of migraine attacks may actually be higher in men. Studies suggest that men are less likely than women to see a doctor about their migraines, which means more men might have them than statistics show.

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