The global health crisis has undoubtedly shaken the world to its core. Worst of all, it has exacerbated common health problems like a migraine episode and a throbbing headache on top of the head. Chances are, you’re among the thousands struggling with more severe bouts of headaches. According to a report, headache frequency has significantly increased in 2020 compared to the previous two years. Headache specialists also claim that most of their patients have observed worse symptoms of headaches and migraines.
Have you ever wondered what’s causing this turn of events? Have you been struggling with more frequent and intense migraine attacks and headaches? Read on our discussion below to learn more about migraines and headaches this pandemic.
Migraines, Headaches, and Stress
A web-based study on the impact of COVID-19 on migraineurs reveals that the pandemic adversely affects migraineurs. Some of the key findings that you may find helpful in understanding pandemic migraines and headaches are as follows:
- 59.6 percent of the respondents claimed they experienced more migraine episodes than the previous years.
- Out of the 1018 patients, 10.3 percent said their condition became chronic.
- Sleep appears to be an essential factor in the sudden changes in headaches and migraine frequency, as 78.1 percent reveals that they have difficulties sleeping.
- 79.5 percent have symptoms of depression and anxiety.
- Rebound headaches might also play a part in the upward trends of pandemic migraines and headaches as 58.7 percent report overuse of pain medication.
Indeed, headaches and migraines can cause debilitating effects. Both symptoms also aggravate due to heightened stress levels, diet changes, and social isolation, which are among many patients’ main complaints during this pandemic.
On top of these, more and more headache and migraine sufferers can’t get a proper diagnosis as patients with COVID-19 fill emergency rooms and clinics.
Managing Headaches and Migraines During the Pandemic
If you notice worst symptoms like an increased throbbing headache on top of the head or chronic migraine attacks, you may find it helpful to try the remedies and strategies listed below:
Keep track of your symptoms
Note the factors that trigger your headaches and migraines. You can keep these details in a diary so you can quickly refer to them when consulting with a neurologist or an upper cervical chiropractor. Some of the common triggers that patients note in the journal include:
- Changes in sleep pattern
- Stress, anxiety, and depression
- Excessive or low intake of caffeine
- Alcohol abuse
- Hormonal changes, especially in women
- Prolong exposure to computer or mobile screens
- Sedentary lifestyle, especially because of the pandemic restrictions
- Environmental changes like air pressure, temperature, and humidity fluctuations
- Dietary changes or eating trigger foods that contain additives
- Skipping meals frequently
- Failing to hydrate the body properly
Avoid excessive intake of pain relievers
While pain medication like NSAIDs may come in handy in providing short-term relief, you should avoid taking excessive doses.
Maintain communication with your headache doctors
Many physicians nowadays provide telemedicine options for their patients. If you frequently have headaches or migraines, it’s good practice to consult with your doctors to know the best course of action you should take.
Unplug and limit the use of your gadgets
Try spending at least 15 minutes away from your phone, laptop, or desktop each day. Short breaks from your electronic devices could help you get away from the news and lessen digital eye strain.
Maintain an active lifestyle even while staying at home
We know it can be extremely challenging to deal with the new WFH arrangement and limited access to fitness centers like aerobics clubs and gyms. However, these shouldn’t limit you from maintaining an active life. Here are some tips you can use:
- Find workout routines that can work in your available space
- Jazz up your workouts with music or activity video games
- If you have kids, take the time to play with them in your yard
- Create a dedicated space for your workout equipment
- Try doing yoga or weight training for a change
- Schedule regular walks or runs around your neighborhood
Try natural remedies to ease your pain
Besides seeking medical assistance, trying natural remedies for migraines and headaches might be useful for you. Here are promising natural pain relief options you can try:
- Using essential oils extracted from plants like lavender and peppermint
- Trying acupuncture therapy to reduce headache symptoms
- Using cold to regulate blood flow and minimize inflammation
- Applying a warm compress to ease tight and sore muscles, especially around the neck
- Staying in a dimly lit and cold room during a migraine episode
- Getting an upper cervical chiropractic adjustment
Finding Lasting Relief for Migraines and Throbbing Headache on Top of the Head
Dealing with headaches or migraine episodes can get tricky. Often, effective management of the symptom boils down to finding the possible root cause of the pain. Now, studies haven’t found a definite explanation behind the occurrence of headaches and migraines. However, more evidence shows that a neck misalignment may be a contributing factor to the pain.
If you have been experiencing worsening migraine attacks or painful headaches during these past few months, you can try seeking upper cervical care. It’s an approach that focuses on correcting the alignment of C1 and C2 bones. When these two bones shift from their original alignment, they can trigger all kinds of problems, including migraines and chronic headaches. By restoring them to their original position, you can potentially see major improvements in your condition.
Start managing a throbbing headache on top of the head and a migraine attack today! Contact a nearby upper cervical chiropractor to schedule your visit and get your neck bones assessed and adjusted.