Migraine is a neurological syndrome which causes severe, recurring and painful headaches. They can be preceded or accompanied by sensory warning signs and other symptoms. These symptoms include vomiting, nausea, dizziness, irritability, low energy, fatigue, food craving, inactivity and neck stiffness. The extreme pain that migraines cause can last for hours or even days. Migraine often affects all age groups. However, women are more likely to have migraines than men. Family history is one of the primary risk factors for having migraines.
Also read: Telltale Symptoms Of Migraine You Need To Watch Out For
Some preventive measures to deal with migraine:
1. Weather change:
Changes in the weather can have an impact on your migraine patterns. High humidity, rainy days and hot temperatures can stimulate headaches. If the weather becomes uncomfortable for you, you may need to step inside and take a break from the outdoors. You can also limit outdoor activities in the headache-inducing weather.
2. Skipping meals:
Fasting or skipping meals is not advised as it can trigger migraine headaches. Make sure you eat after every three to four hours. Both hunger and dehydration can cause migraines. Make sure you drinking enough water all day long, and never skip a meal.
Also read: Migraines: 7 Different Types Of Migraine Headaches
3. Adequate sleep:
Lack of sleep can also aggravate symptoms, so make sure you sleep for at least seven to eight hours. Even getting too much sleep can cause headaches, so do not try to make up for lost sleep by snoozing for too long. Even irregular sleeping patters may induce headache.
4. Avoid stress:
Although it is not possible that we always control stressful situations, but we can always control how we react to them. Migraines are commonly due to stressful events. Relaxation techniques such as meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises can help reduce stress levels.
Regular physical exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. But intense exercise, such as weight lifting, can trigger headaches. So it is better that you avoid these activities. Instead go for exercises that help in stress reduction without putting too much strain on the body. These include yoga, light aerobics or Zumba.
Here are some foods that can trigger headaches:
1. Artificial sweeteners:
Many processed and packaged foods contain artificial sweeteners and can be harmful for your overall health. They are used as sugar alternatives for those with diabetes. But these sweeteners can even cause migraines. Therefore, you should not include them in your diet.
Cured meats like red meat, ham, hot dogs and sausages are laced with preservatives called nitrates, which preserve colour and flavour. These foods can release nitric oxide into the blood, which dilates blood vessels in the brain. This compound nitric oxide can cause or contribute to migraines.
When you drink alcohol blood flow to your brain increases. Sulfites which are used as a preservative can also cause headache. The higher the sulfite content, the greater the chance of developing migraine. Alcohol can also causes dehydration, which may also lead to migraine. Red wine, beer, whiskey, Scotch and champagne should be avoided as they are the most commonly identified headache triggers.
Caffeine is found in foods like chocolate and cocoa, beverages such as coffee, tea, and colas, and in certain medications also. Too much caffeine or caffeine withdrawal can also provoke a headache. Therefore, it is best to avoid caffeinated foods or beverages.