Christmas is just a few days away, and this is the time of parties, shopping, and having fun with family and friends. This is also a time when headaches are more prevent especially if you are subjected to migraines. Preparing meals, shopping, forgetting to eat regularly, or having too many engagements and being sleep-deprived all can cause headaches. In addition, we tend to neglect ourselves while doing for others in this season of giving. Taking care of yourself is important so you can enjoy all that the holidays have to offer, and without the pain of a headache or migraine.
Stress and anxiety can trigger headaches for many individuals, especially for those who are prone to headaches or migraines. It is probably easier to say then do, but pace yourself and learn how to say no, you can’t possible fulfill every obligation or responsibility that comes with the holidays. Even in this holiday season of giving, you have to take me time and prioritize it. This will help to decrease the number of headaches or migraines. If you are in pain with a headache you are not enjoying the holidays, and neither is anyone else around you.
One thing to remember when giving gifts, there is a possibility of tense headaches from carrying heavy packages. Try not to carry to much at one time, and put a hot or cold compress on your neck to help with relaxing the muscles and preventing a stress or tension headache. At this time of year everyone is making merry, and drinking. Don’t drink on an empty stomach, or mix your cocktails. In addition, if you are drinking and do develop a headache remember that that is the first sign of dehydration, which can happen with drinking alcohol to excess, because it can become toxic to your body.
This time of year the increase of depression many people are aware of, but the increase of headaches is not something many people are aware of. Why are headaches more prevalent around this time of year? This time of year the body and mind are subjected to many stresses. In addition, many people change their routines to attend family gatherings, parties, and of course shopping, and gift-giving. Furthermore, many of the things that trigger depression also triggers headaches.
The holiday season is meant to be a special time of year. But a migraine can ruin the merriment. Here are some stress management tips on how to avoid getting a migraine during the holiday season.
Eat three times or more daily on a regular schedule; avoid fasting or postponing meals. Limit caffeine.
Don’t smoke! Nicotine and carbon monoxide may increase headaches. In addition, avoid a smoke-filled environment (ambient smoke).
Do not let the hectic activities surrounding the holidays allow you to forget your medication schedule, and try to maintain your regular patterns. Utilize rest, ice, and/or other methods that may work for you. Avoid excessive use of medications, and keep any appointments you may have with your physician during this time.
Anticipate the stress and pace yourself. Take time out to unwind, practice biofeedback, meditation, and other relaxation methods including “brief relaxation” techniques (e.g., several minutes of slow abdominal breathing) to recharge your emotional batteries during long hours of holiday preparation and celebration.
Prepare for post-holiday letdown. The holiday season eventually comes to an end and, unfortunately for some individuals, a strong emotional letdown occurs during January and February. This can make them more prone to headaches and depressed mood.
As much as possible, keep to your normal daily rhythm. Temper your indulgences. And, above all, keep things in perspective. Don’t expect to please everybody—if you spend the holidays with a headache, you are unlikely to please anybody., and get plenty of rest.