The good news is that people over the age of 40 or so rarely develop migraines for the first time, and if you have had them since you were young often the incidence of migraines diminishes with age. However, if you already have a propensity for migraines you may continue to have them into old age.
Here are some ways to prevent and treat migraines:
- Some believe that certain triggers may bring on migraines. If you can isolate what usually brings them on, you may be able to prevent them or at least lessen their severity. Triggers might include certain types of food, hunger, fatigue, stress, onset of menstruation, use of oral contraceptives, or extreme sunlight.
- If you feel a migraine coming on, relax in a quiet, dark place.
- Put a cool cloth or cold pack on your forehead. don’t use heat, as it may exacerbate a migraine.
- Have someone massage your neck and shoulders.
- At the first sign take a pain reliever like aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen, or the prescription pain reliever your doctor has recommended.
Some of the most common causes of tension headaches are stress, hunger, eyestrain, bad posture, or lack of sleep. Normally an over-the-counter pain reliever can take care of the symptoms. To reduce the frequency and intensity of tension headaches try these tips:
- Exercise regularly. Exercise reduces the tension that causes headaches.
- Make a conscious effort to improve your posture.
- Try to reduce emotional stress. If something has upset you give yourself time to relax and practice breathing techniques.
- When doing prolonged work at a desk, take frequent breaks. Change positions; get up and walk around.
- Cut down on caffeine, but slowly so you don’t have withdrawal headaches.
In conclusion, there are ways you can reduce or prevent headaches. However, if a headache persists or is unusual in its pain you might have to see your doctor. Don’t forget, your Medicare benefits cover doctor visits for chronic headache conditions. In some cases, Medicare may pay for Botox treatment for migraines and other severe headaches. Speak with your doctor.