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Seniors and Migraines

seniors migraines edmontonDealing with a headache is always unpleasant, especially when the severity of the pain is enough to impact how you are able to engage in aspects of your everyday life.

Having a migraine can take those feelings of frustration, discomfort, and annoyance that accompany a headache and amplify them to a debilitating degree. Migraines can be triggered by a whole host of different contributors and often involve multiple symptoms that can range from slightly uncomfortable all the way up to agonizing.

What is a Migraine?

A migraine is often explained as a more intense form of a headache that involves greater severity of symptoms and pain. Migraines involve pain that often feels like pounding or throbbing, and is severe in its impact on both a person’s sensation and their ability to function in their daily life. The pain that is experienced can be largely clustered in the space behind the eyes, can seem to jump from one side of the head to the other, or can be experienced in all areas of the head at once. Migraines also often come with vision troubles, dizziness, nausea, and elevated levels of sensitivity to things such as sound, light, and smell.

Seniors and Migraines

Individuals who experience migraines typically encounter their first one before the age of 40, and the regularity and severity of migraines generally declines as we move into older age. For this reason, it is especially important for seniors to discuss the occurrence of migraines with a healthcare professional (particularly when older than the age of 65). In the case of seniors, migraines can indicate larger health problems that are displaying themselves through the symptoms of migraines, such as brain injury or stroke. 

Avoiding Migraines

Migraines can be extremely painful and rather difficult to manage once they have already begun, so it is always best to incorporate strategies that have the potential to help avoid the onset of migraines all together. The following are some considerations that seniors should keep in mind:

  • Avoid Strong or Offensive Smells
  • Identify and Avoid Foods that Seem to Trigger Migraines
  • Minimize Stress
  • Reduce Caffeine and Alcohol Consumption
  • Stay Hydrated

The elements that may lead to a migraine are often different in the case of each person, and some of these triggers are entirely out of our control, such as the weather. Taking note of the consistent factors that are present every time a migraine begins can help seniors to recognize what contributes to their migraines so they can attempt to avoid them.

Dealing with a Migraine

When migraines strike, there are some behaviours and strategies that can help to deal with or lessen the intensity of some of the symptoms that seniors may encounter:

  • Avoid Overstimulation (Bright Lights, Loud Noises, etc)
  • Avoid Strong Tastes or Smells
  • Hydrate
  • Keep Away from Screens
  • Rest
  • Stay in a Dark or Dimly Setting

Seniors in Edmonton should plan to meet with a doctor should symptoms of migraines continue or strike on a consistent basis in order to talk through treatment options and rule out or identify potential causes.

Contact us today for a Free Home Care Assessment with our Nurse to discuss how our services in Edmonton, Sherwood Park, and St. Albert can help you or a loved one with Migraines.