Three Treatments for Chronic Migraine
While migraines are a common ailment, chronic migraine, or a headache that occurs more than 15 days a month for at least three months, affects only about three percent of the population. However, chronic migraines are typically debilitating, and can cause you to miss out on the joys of life, such as school, work, exercise or socializing, due to lasting and intense pain. Fortunately, there are three ways to treat chronic migraine.
Lifestyle Modification and Trigger Reduction
Sometimes, chronic migraine can be triggered by your lifestyle. What you’re eating and drinking, along with your stress levels and how much sleep you get on a regular basis can all contribute to headaches. Additionally, other conditions, such as depression or fibromyalgia, can exacerbate your migraine, so it is important to manage your medical conditions carefully, as instructed by your physician.
The first step in treating migraines with a lifestyle change is to determine their trigger. If getting more sleep eases your headache pain, or drinking more water helps you suffer from migraines less frequently, you should make it a habit to continue to do the things that reduce your pain.
Acute Headache Treatment
While it’s important to avoid the overuse of over-the-counter pain medication, once you and your doctor have identified an appropriate dosage and regimen for your “bad” days, or have identified your triggers, acute treatment, such as pain-killers, can be helpful in curbing your minor pain before it worsens.
To avoid overuse, make sure you stop taking over-the-counter medication as soon as you reach the point where the maximum dosage is no longer helpful. At this point, a more extensive treatment plan may be necessary to help you manage your pain.
Unlike acute treatment, preventative treatment helps prevent migraines before they occur, rather than simply treating the pain after it starts. Common preventative treatments for chronic headache pain include:
- Beta-blockers: Used to relax blood vessels and prevent pain.
- Anticonvulsants: Typically used to prevent seizures, but can also be useful in preventing migraines.
- Botox: Injected into the face and scalp once every three months to help prevent and reduce headache pain.
- Antidepressants: SNRIs can be useful in preventing pain associated with chronic migraine.
- Calcium-channel blockers: They ease the narrowing of the blood vessels and prevent pain.
- NSAIDs: Prescribed to those who are prone to migraines around their period to prevent an attack.
- CGRP Inhibitors: CGRP or calcitonin gene-related peptide is a molecule involved in causing severe headache pain. CGRP inhibitors block this molecule and help prevent pain before it begins.
As always, your specific treatment depends on your physician, your underlying medical conditions and history, and your lifestyle. If you’re suffering from debilitating headaches, schedule an appointment with your doctor.
About Minivasive Pain and Orthopedics
At Minivasive Pain, we specialize in pain management, and are experienced in helping migraine-sufferers. Iit is our mission to treat the causes of your pain with both the highest standards of care and quality. With several locations throughout the Houston area, caring for your joint aches and stiffness is easy. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, visit https://www.minivasivepain.com/contact-us/ or call us at (346) 800-6001.