5 Tips to Prevent Weekend Migraines

There’s nothing worse than having a whole weekend planned out for some well-deserved R&R when that pesky migraine comes poking its head around the back of your eye. It’s like a simultaneous punch in the frontal lobe, back of the head, and right in the gut, because now your weekend is shot. You’re committed to the treatment and management of a “let-down” headache instead, which is as dismal as it sounds. 

let-down headache is literally that – it’s letting you down from your high-stress day or week. The body is continually trying to communicate and when communications are disrupted by high levels of stress, your brain needs some time to “decompress” and come down. It hasn’t had any time to adjust to the fluctuating hormones that stress pumps through your body, so when the weekend comes, it’s ready to shut down. Literally.

Nobody likes a ruined weekend or vacation, so let’s look at a few ways to help you prevent your next migraine from interrupting your life.

Tip #1:  You are what you eat, so eat less stress

What I mean is twofold: 1) avoid stress eating; that never ends well, and 2) avoid eating foods that have been made, grown or manufactured in stress or under duress. If the cow you’re eating was frightened and hurt when it was killed, believe it or not, those stress hormones affected the hamburger you’re eating. You are literally eating the stress of the animal.  Avoid that.

Tip #2: Prepare your sleep schedule for the week

Sleep deprivation is one of the most common causes of migraine and is a huge trigger for anyone suffering from any chronic pain and illness. In a culture that rewards burning the midnight oil, it’s hard to convince yourself to get a full eight hours of quality sleep each night. Start with these sleep tips and make a schedule. Regulating your sleep will help you cope with stress better and reduce the risk of let-down headache. 

Tip #3: Cut way down on caffeine intake

I know, sometimes coffee feels like manna from heaven for your tired soul and that Diet Coke at lunch boosts you through the rest of the day, but the caffeine is likely part of your problem. Try going to half-caff and caffeine-free Diet Coke, and then down to decaf everything and eventually kill the Coke. You’ll feel more energized and awake in the mornings and your body, overall, will thank you.

Tip #4: Physical activity will always have a positive benefit

Don’t worry, I don’t mean join a gym and run a treadmill race with the person in front of you. I mean simple, daily activities you enjoy like gardening, cleaning up the house, taking a short walk after dinner, or doing your big workout at lunch. The effect exercise has on your heart, body and mind is incredible and warrants your attention. 

Tip #5: Use aromatherapy throughout the day or at the same time each day

Regulate your exposure to scents like lavender, peppermint, lemon and eucalyptus. Expose yourself to your chosen aromatherapy throughout the day, or you can create a routine where you intentionally breathe in the scent to inhale health and exhale pain. 

Don’t miss out on that “You Time” you had scheduled next weekend. Regulate your diet, sleep and stress levels in whatever way works for you. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach. If you are looking for some more guided treatments, please give me a call at my office. You don’t have to be close by, either. Phone consultations are perfectly normal!

Sources:

Migraine Again, “Weekend Migraine: 7 Tips to Stop The Saturday Syndrome”

Patient Care Online, ““Let Down” or “Weekend” Migraines.” https://www.patientcareonline.com/headache-and-migraine/let-down-or-weekend-migraines