Do You Know What Your Migraine Triggers Are?
Posted on May 21 2014Affecting more than 37 million people in the United States, migraines are a very intense type of headache that tends to cause intense pain and is often associated with severe throbbing, light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, vision changes and nausea. According to migraine.com, 91% of migraine sufferers are unable to work or function normally while experiencing a migraine attack and migraine sufferers spend an estimated $59 more per month on healthcare costs than non-migraine sufferers. In addition to causing intense pain and preventing sufferers from functioning normally, migraine headaches can have a significant impact on an individual’s quality of life. Although scientists are still unclear about the exact causes of migraine headaches, experts from the Mayo Clinic explain that a combination of genetics and environmental factors seem to play a significant role. Chemical changes in the brain, such as a drop in serotonin levels or hormonal changes in women, have a tendency to cause migraines. In addition, experts explain that a variety of environmental factors can also trigger the onset of a migraine headache, and each individual may be more susceptible to a different combination of triggers. Learning about what your specific migraine triggers are, and then avoiding those circumstances, is a very effective method of preventing and reducing the occurrence of migraine headaches. While migraine triggers are often different for each person, there are a variety of triggers that have been labeled as more common triggers for the onset of migraines. Common Migraine Triggers: - pregnancy and menopause - hormonal medications - salty and processed foods - skipping meals and extreme hunger - food additives, like the sweetener aspartame and the preservative monosodium glutamate - wine and highly caffeinated beverages - stress - bright lights or loud noises, as well as unusual smells - lack of sleep or changes in sleeping patterns - intense physical activity - weather changes and sudden changes in barometric pressure - certain medications Talking with your healthcare provider, who will probably suggest keeping a headache diary (where you keep detailed notes regarding when your headaches start, what you were doing at the time, foods and drinks that you’ve had within the past 24 hours, your stress levels, activity level, how much sleep you got, what medications you’ve taken, how severe the headache is, where the pain is, how long it lasts, and what provided relief), is one of the most effective methods of figuring out what your specific migraine triggers are. Once you’ve determined what your migraine triggers are you will know what types of things you should be trying to avoid. If chlorine, for example, is one of your major migraine triggers you may want to avoid situations where you are likely to be exposed to chlorine. While determining and avoiding your migraine triggers will significantly help reduce the frequency of migraine headache occurrences, Mountainside Medical Equipment offers a selection of headache relief medications and migraine relief products from some of the most trusted and relied on name brands, like Excedrin, Bayer, Ibuprofen, Advil, Aleve, and more. Sources: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/migraine-headache/basics/preparing-for-your-appointment/con-20026358 http://migraine.com/migraine-statistics/ http://www.migrainetrust.org/factsheet-migraine-triggers-10505 http://www.mountainside-medical.com/blog/migraines-affect-quality-life-burden-healthcare-system/