LifestyleHow to control migraine while working from home

How to control migraine while working from home

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New Delhi. Migraine is a debilitating neurological disease, which consistently ranks among the top 10 leading causes of years of living with disability worldwide. The main symptom of a migraine is a persistent headache with symptoms such as sharp or throbbing pain on one side of the head, sensitivity to light and sound. Despite being a very common headache disorder, affecting approximately 15 percent of the adult population worldwide, it remains poorly understood and most neglected. In Delhi, about 25 percent of the population suffers from migraine every year.

While migraine is an invisible condition, it can severely affect individuals in the personal, professional and social domains, thus affecting overall quality of life and productivity. Work from home, or the ‘new normal’, has significantly affected the lives of people with migraines, ranging from an inability to focus on work to missed workdays. It has become even more important to ensure that individuals have the understanding and tools to effectively manage migraines.

Debashish Choudhary, Professor and Head of Neurology, GB Pant Institute of Post Graduate Medical Education and Research (GIPMER) and in-charge, Headache Clinic, GIPMER, New Delhi, said, “There is a lack of understanding among people about the severity of migraine. In one of our recent studies, about 50 to 60 percent of migraineurs were not diagnosed, despite recurrent headaches. Because migraines fall on a spectrum that ranges from occasional or mild attacks to recurrent attacks, many people just call it a headache. With hectic work-from-home schedules, fear of contracting the COVID-19 infection and difficulty in accessing personal care, people are avoiding seeking medical help for the condition, instead opting for related comorbidities such as stress or depression. Blaming the symptoms.

He added, “Financial concerns due to job loss or pay cuts also contribute to increased migraine attacks, which have been more noticeable lately. The effects of migraine on one’s quality of life have also reportedly worsened, especially for many migraineurs working as essential health workers.

Migraines can become chronic due to neglect of symptoms and failure to treat the condition. Recognizing migraine as a serious condition with severe disability and adopting a holistic treatment approach is a fundamental requirement. Early detection can be a valuable aid to a smoother patient journey and better quality of life.

Here are 5 ways to manage your migraines while working from home:

Identify risk factors and monitor triggers Migraines can begin at any age but tend to peak during one’s prime productive years. In addition, women are three times more likely to be affected than men, with the prevalence peaking between the ages of 25 and 55.

Prolonged working from home as well as prolonged screen time, disturbed sleep time and irregular eating habits can increase stress levels. For migraineurs, such changes can become a migraine trigger, making their condition worse. Identifying individual triggers can help individuals better manage their migraines.

Make the right choice for diet and lifestyle:

Working from home can be daunting, but a daily routine that optimizes your physical and mental health can help keep your migraines at bay. Eating healthy meals at appropriate times or eating small, frequent meals throughout the day is associated with less frequent migraine headaches. Taking breaks from work at regular intervals can help you eat right and reduce eye strain caused by excessive screen use. Modifying your lifestyle, including smoking cessation and reducing alcohol consumption, and maintaining sleep habits and exercising regularly, can be key to managing migraines. They are also beneficial in the prevention and treatment of migraine.

Talk to an expert:

It is important to consult a medical specialist when you are experiencing severe headaches that disrupt your daily routine. Many migraine patients are hesitant to seek medical help. This could be due to a number of reasons – lack of understanding of the severity of migraine, time constraints due to busy work-from-home schedules, or more recently, lack of in-person clinic consultations due to the fear of COVID-19 infection. . However, consulting a neurologist, even through teleconsultation, is an essential step in diagnosing your condition and understanding the options available for acute and chronic management of migraine, including preventive treatment. With evidence-based information on the effects of migraine intensity reduction, quality of life, and ease of use, neurologists can guide you on the most appropriate treatment option to prevent or reduce your migraine episodes.

Track Your Migraines:

It’s a good idea to keep a diary (or download a migraine tracker app) to record your timing and severity.


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