If you're one of the more than 37 million Americans who suffer from migraines, you know how painful they can be. In fact, the pain associated with migraines can be so severe that it interferes with your daily life. Even with medical treatment, and medication, migraine pain can still creep into your life. Unfortunately, migraine headaches can be brought on by a wide variety of causes. Sleep problems are one common cause of migraine headaches. If you're prone to sleep-related migraines, help is available. In addition to following the pain management plan provided by your doctor, here are four other steps you should take to help you get a restful nights sleep so you can avoid the migraines.
Give Yourself a Chance to Unwind
If you're in the habit of heading right to bed in the evening, it's time you started giving yourself a chance to unwind. Heading to bed with the day's stressful activities still on your mind is a good way to bring on a migraine in the morning. Instead, spend at least 30 minutes relaxing and unwinding before you head to bed. Take a relaxing shower, curl up with a good book, or take a short walk in the evening to get yourself relaxed and ready for bed.
Avoid Caffeine Before Bedtime
Caffeine is a good way to battle migraine pain during the day. However, when you consume caffeine before bed, it might have the opposite effect on you. Since caffeine is a stimulant, consuming it before bed will leave you tossing and turning while you're trying to get to sleep. Unfortunately, that tossing and turning to result in a morning migraine. To avoid that problem, be sure to avoid all caffeine before you go to bed at night.
Don't Force Yourself to Sleep
There's nothing worse than climbing into bed only to discover that you can't get to sleep. When that happens, don't try to force yourself to go to sleep. Instead, lay there quietly, with your eyes closed, for a few minutes. Try to breathe slowly and methodically while you relax. If you're still not able to get to sleep after about 15 minutes, get up and read a book, or meditate. Once you feel yourself getting sleepy again, head back to bed. Allowing yourself to slowly go to sleep will help promote restful sleep, and prevent morning migraines.
Make Like the Bears and Hibernate
When winter arrives, bears find a dark, quiet den to sleep in. Once they're asleep, they stay asleep all winter long. Now, you don't want to sleep all winter long, but you do want to sleep all night long. That's why you need to find your own dark, quiet den to sleep in. When you head to bed at night, turn all the lights out, and get your room as dark as possible. Turn on a small fan to create white noise, and block out any other noise that could be interfering with your sleep. The darkened room will help you sleep better and avoid the morning migraine pain.
Contact a pain management clinic for more information and assistance.