Video Q & A:

Prevention 101


What is a migraine diary?

Expert:   Joshua Cohen, M.D., M.P.H. , St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center »

Who knew that writing a few words in a diary could help cure or prevent a migraine? But they're not just any words. Watch this to find out why they're so important!

Transcript: If you get migraines, you’re going to try HARD to prevent an attack. But if you don’t identify your migraine TRIGGERS, you’re not going to be able to avoid getting hit by a headache that seems to come out of the blue. The BEST way to identify what sparks YOUR migraines is to KEEP TRACK of the triggers in a journal or diary. The idea of a migraine diary is simple: every time you have a headache, write about it. Include everything: the time it started…where you were and what you were doing…how long it lasted…what you ate and drank in the 24 hours before the attack… if you’re on any medication…and-- if you’re female--when you had your period. SOME common triggers that you may include are: emotional stress, certain types of foods, changes in weather, dehydration, changes in your diet and sleeping patterns, bright or FLASHING lights,certain medications, intense physical exertion, and menstruation. And that’s not even ALL of them. Once you identify potential triggers, make note of what RELIEVED your headache. Whether you took painkillers or just performed relaxation techniques, it might provide clues to your doctor about how to proceed with your treatment plan. After analyzing all the information in your migraine diary, you and your doctor may be able to pinpoint what sets off YOUR headaches so you can make appropriate lifestyle changes. More »

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