Should You Ditch New Year’s Resolutions for Migraine Prevention?
Last year we posted a list of 20 New Year’s resolutions for migraine sufferers. We get that New Year’s resolutions are hard to keep, so this year we are encouraging you to resolve to manage your chronic migraine condition throughout the whole year instead of making a list of promises that will be forgotten about by February.
As we said last year, lifestyle and diet don’t cure migraines, but many sufferers feel much better and experience fewer attacks once they avoid their triggers and stick to healthy habits. Here’s to a happy and healthy 2016!
January and February – Start a migraine diary. Maintaining a migraine diary, with information about triggers, medication, reactions, headache frequency and characteristics is the most important thing you can do to help you best understand and manage your condition. Find a specialist with whom you can share your diary to help you through 2016.
March and April – Really evaluate your diet and drinking habits. Certain foods and especially alcohol are major triggers for some migraine sufferers. Don’t just evaluate what you’re eating, but also take a look at how often and how much you eat. Notice if hunger triggers migraines for you. Take time to shop for and prepare healthy meals that you can have ready when you need them. If you don’t have time to do this for yourself, enlist the help of a spouse or friend, or take advantage of a meal delivery service.
June and July – Get outside. Exercise can benefit your mood and cardiovascular health. Invite others to get outdoors with you to get some socializing that can also do wonders for your mental health. Some much needed sunshine can boost your vitamin D levels and improve your mood and immune system.
August and September – Get to bed. Create a sleep schedule you can stick to. Avoid screen time late at night. Make sure you are getting enough sleep for your body’s needs (most people need 7-9 hours) and see if you notice improvement in your migraines.
October and November – Do something you haven’t been able to do all year. Maybe you haven’t been able to read that book or see that movie you’ve been meaning to catch. Treating yourself can reduce anxiety which can really improve migraine frequency.
December – Find ways to fight stress. See a therapist. Go to a yoga class. Many people find the holidays and end of the year to be stressful. Because stress leads to migraines, managing your stress proactively can prevent migraine attacks.