Lifestyle changes are a vital component of managing migraine. Our doctors and specialists play an important role in our treatment of migraine, but our overall wellbeing can be greatly impacted by things we can do for ourselves.
Below are some key areas we need to think about regarding our lifestyle and some simple things you can do to make changes. These small changes add up, support other treatments you may be receiving, and offer you the best chance at a better outcome overall.
Practicing healthy sleep habits and seeking help when needed are important steps in managing migraine. Too much, too little, and broken sleep can all be migraine triggers.
The importance of a good sleep routine can make a difference. Going to bed late, waking up at different times, and how well you slept can all contribute to migraine. Keeping to regular sleep patterns and sticking to a schedule may result in fewer or less painful migraines.
Sleep can also relieve the pain from your migraine attacks and regular naps can help manage your migraine, allowing you to make the most out of your day. Tips for a better night’s sleep.
Research has shown a long-standing relationship between sleep quality and migraine. It’s noted that people with migraine are more likely to suffer from insufficient sleep and are more prone to sleep disorders such as insomnia and sleep apnea. Remember, if you have trouble sleeping, make sure you seek help from a professional.
Read more about sleep here.
Certain trigger factors can be related to environmental issues such as dust, smoke, high altitude, weather changes, heat, humidity, loud noises, strong smells, and exposure to glare or flickering lights.
Sitting in front of a computer at home or work for long periods of time can cause problems if you experience migraine.
While you can’t always control environmental factors, there are some things you can do – especially in the workplace, including:
- Taking regular breaks,
- Using anti-glare screens, and
- Making sure your workstation is properly set up.
Some people with migraine find sunglasses very helpful in reducing the effects of glare. Light sensitivity can be a symptom of migraine, but it can also be a trigger. There are multiple migraine-specific glasses on the market. Migraine glasses are designed to filter out specific types of light known to be triggers for migraine. The most common type of migraine glasses is a filter called FLE-41 that is applied to the lens. These glasses may help reduce sensitivity to light and in turn, lessen the affects light has on migraine.
Read more about support at work here.
Taking care of your mental health is crucial for anyone who lives with migraine. Common symptoms of anxiety, like excessive worry, fear, and irritability, can trigger migraine symptoms. And living with migraine fuels anxiety!
Having a psychologist as part of your care team is a really good idea for anyone living with migraine. Aside from just having someone safe to talk to, your psychologist can help you put in place plan and give you practical skills to manage your anxiety, stay calm, and stay positive.
Staying connected to community, getting the help you need, and giving yourself permission to feel whatever your feeling rather than trying to drown it out are all very important in managing your migraine.
Read more about mental health and migraine here.