Migraine Headaches (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
You can't cure migraines, but you can use medicines and other treatments to feel better.
The goal of treatment is to reduce how often you get migraines and to stop the headaches with the fewest drug side effects. Your doctor may have you try several types of medicines and may adjust the doses to manage your migraines.
Find and avoid migraine triggers
Keeping a headache diary(What is a PDF document?) is a good way to find your triggers. You write down when you have a headache and how bad it is, along with details such as what you ate and what you did before the headache started. You look for patterns to your headaches. This information can help you know what to avoid to prevent a migraine.
You may take:
For mild to moderate migraines, you may first want to try over-the-counter pain relievers that have fewer side effects and cost less than other medicines. But if they don't help, you may need prescription medicines.
If medicines to stop a migraine don't give you enough relief, or if you're taking them more than 2 times a week, talk to your doctor about whether you should take medicines to prevent a migraine.
Try other treatments
You may want to try complementary treatments along with medicines. These may include:
For more information, see Other Treatment.
Before you try these treatments, be sure to ask your doctor if they are safe for you.
How you think can affect how you feel. So finding ways to relax and change your negative or worrisome thoughts may help prevent headaches.
You may want to try:
For more information, see Living With Migraine Headaches.
Treatment if your headaches get worse
If treatment doesn't stop your migraines, you and your doctor may make changes. You may try different medicines, a new mix of medicines, or different doses.
If you have already tried several types of medicine, your doctor may want you to have tests (such as an MRI or CT scan) to look for any other cause for your headaches.
It is possible to be diagnosed with migraines when you really have another type of headache. (But it's more common for a person to be diagnosed with another type of headache when he or she really has migraines.)
It can be hard to tell the difference between migraines and other types of headaches such as sinus, tension, or cluster headaches. The symptoms can be the same. And you may have more than one kind of headache. Different types of headaches need different treatment.
Other things to think about
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