Treatment for migraine headaches

Migraine headaches are painful and throbbing headaches that last for 4-72 hours. It is caused by specific changes within the brain. Severe pain in the head is accompanied by sensitivity to light, smells and sound.

Causes of migraine headaches

  • Skipping on meals
  • Stress
  • Drinking red wine
  • Poor sleeping habits
  • Changes in the normal routine
  • Monosodium glutamate
  • Strong odors
    Migraine headaches

    A throbbing headache on one side of the head.

  • Chocolate

Symptoms

  • A throbbing headache on one side of the head.
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Performing activities and exposure to noise, light and odors can worsen the condition
  • Pain can spread to the other side of head and pain can be felt on both sides of the head.
  • Some people have an aura before the start of a migraine. This is characterized as seeing spots, flashing lights and wavy lines. The hands, face or arms can be numb. The aura usually starts about 30 minutes before the headache occurs.

Treatment

  • Take a rest in a quiet, dark room. Close the eyes and relax. Avoid reading or watching TV.
  • Apply a cold pack on the painful area. It relaxes the body and increase circulation of blood and lessens pain. Wrap the ice pack in a towel before placing on the affected area. Avoid applying the pack directly on the skin to prevent frostbite and worsen the condition.
  • Apply a damp cold towel on the painful area. Wet a towel and wring out the excess water and place it in the freezer for at least 5 minutes. Take it out of the freezer. Refold and put it back again in the freezer. Wrap the towel around the head or neck until pain is reduced.
  • Apply warm packs and heating pads on the affected area to relax the tensed muscles. Another alternative is to take a warm bath or shower.
  • Drink caffeinated drinks to lessen the migraine pain in the early stage to enhance the effects of pain medications such as acetaminophen and aspirin.
  • Massage the head and the neck to lessen the pain.
  • Maintain regular sleeping schedules. Wake up and get out of bed at the same time every day. Take short naps at least not more than 20-30 minutes to prevent interruption of sleep at night.
  • Soak in a warm bath to relax the body.
  • Eat at the same time everyday and do not skip meals. Avoid eating foods that might cause migraines such as aged cheese, caffeine or alcohol and chocolates.
  • Perform regular exercises every day such as swimming, walking and cycling. Start exercises slowly to prevent the occurrence of migraines.
  • Perform some relaxation techniques such as deep breathing. Inhale and exhale slowly and deeply for 10 minutes every day to relax the muscles and sit quietly at least for minute.
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