How to Prevent and Treat Migraines

Nothing will ruin your day like a migraine.

You never know when you're going to experience an attack. You might have an idea you're getting a migraine, or it can hit you out of nowhere. But no matter when or how it hits you, it can knock you out for a few hours to a few days!

The good news is that there are ways you can treat and prevent migraines. We're going to break down the stages of migraines, what causes them, how to treat a them and how to avoid them. No more lying in a dark room with a pillow over your head! It's time to fight back against.

What Are Migraines?

Migraines are like headaches on five shots of espresso. They are very intense headaches that break down into four stages: prodrome, aura, attack and post-drome. The Mayo Clinic explains that each step has unique symptoms. Prodrome might hit you one to two days before experiencing the migraine and is accompanied by neck stiffness, mood changes, increased thirst and frequent yawning. The next stage is the aura, which can happen before or during a migraine. Aura is known to affect your vision and you may see various shapes or bright lights. Then, there is the migraine attack, which can last up to 72 hours. You may feel intense or throbbing pain on one side or both sides of your head, nausea or vomiting and sensitivity to light, sound and smell. Pro-drome occurs after the attack ends, leaving you feeling exhausted and confused for up to a day after the attack.

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What Causes Migraines?

There isn't a clear cause for migraines, but the American Migraine Foundation states that several factors can trigger a migraine attack. These triggers can be genetics, hormones, food choices, medical conditions, sleep conditions, dehydration and stress. Migraines are not usually a cause for immediate concern, but in some cases require medical attention. The Mayo Clinic suggests that you seek a doctor if you experience a severe headache like a thunderclap, headache after a head injury, chronic headaches that worsen with exertion, or a headache with fever, stiff neck, mental confusion, weakness, numbness or trouble speaking.

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How Do We Treat Migraines?

There are several ways you can effectively treat migraines. Harvard Health recommends over-the-counter medication, medicinal herbs, aromatherapy and relaxation techniques. Over-the-counter medicines are usually the first course of action because they are incredibly effective. Try Tylenol, aspirin or ibuprofen, like Advil and Motrin. People seeking natural migraine relief can also try the herbs butterbur and feverfew, which have shown promising results in treating headaches. Aromatherapy is another natural migraine treatment. Peppermint oil and lavender oil may help relieve headaches and body tension. You can also try relaxation techniques such as meditation and deep breathing to reduce stress and relax the tension that builds in your body during a migraine. Finally, your morning Starbucks may be one of the best ways to treat your migraine. According to the National Headache Foundation, coffee narrows blood vessels that become enlarged during a migraine, restricting blood flow and relieving pain. Caffeine can also increase how much over-the-counter medication your body absorbs and increase the pain-relieving effects by up to 40%. However, avoid drinking too much caffeine, as it may backfire and trigger a migraine.

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How Do We Prevent Migraines?

The best way to treat migraines is to prevent them from happening in the first place. The first step is to keep a journal to track your migraines, which will help you identify your triggers. Once you identify a migraine pattern, you can incorporate the prevention techniques to address your specific triggers. Pharmacist Alyssa Billingsley lists several proven ways to prevent migraines or reduce the severity of headaches when you experience one. She recommends blue light-blocking glasses, massages, acupuncture and supplements. Prevent migraines caused by too much screen time by blue light blocking glasses. She adds that migraine sufferers are more sensitive to light and blue light can increase sensitivity, making migraines worse.

Migraines induced by stress may be reduced by massages, which can relieve tension in your body and calm your nervous system. For the people who are not afraid of needles, acupuncture may be a great option as it has shown a lot of promise in preventing migraines. Some supplements may also prevent migraines. Talk to your doctor about taking magnesium, vitamin B2 and coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) supplements. Finally, if you are experiencing frequent migraines and need more help, you can talk to your migraine prevention medication or other advanced options. For most people, exercising, eating well, proper stress management and staying hydrated with water and herbal tea (and maybe a morning coffee) will significantly reduce your migraines' frequency and severity.

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Now that you know how to treat what's inside your head, let's move on to the outside! Check out this review for Prose customized hair care products to see if it can really save your damaged hair.