It was the first day of my college hostel life and I was the roommate of a girl who suffered from migraines almost 10 days in a month. Initially I cared less, took it to be a simple headache and did not even bother to ask her if she needed something despite the fact that she used to stay inside the room for hours together lying down, missing classes and suffering in pain. Isn’t it common that all of us get headaches and me, I suffer from sinus and spring back from a groggy head many times which makes me no different from her right? One day I suddenly bounced upon an article in a magazine that spoke about taking care of people with migraine and I was shocked to find that migraine headaches are one of the top 10 disabling conditions (WHO report). Slowly I started showing much concern towards her condition though sometimes I got it all wrong-comforting her with cranky sentences such as ‘It is just a headache. Don’t worry, it will disappear’ or ‘Forget about it, attend classes and divert your attention. Maybe you would become normal’ which aggravated her cortisol levels and put her off mood even more. But in a while I became adept in handling her, sometimes that she comes straight to me for motivation and care when she suffers from one of those migraine days.
Way Too Much than a Headache
Migraine is a neurological disorder involving nerve pathways and brain chemicals that can make the patient suffer from loneliness and isolation. It’s unlike any ordinary headache causing intense pain (mostly on one side of the head), heightened sense of smell, sensitivity and vision changes. The recovery period might take anywhere between few hours and days. Being near a loved one with migraine is taxing on the person staying with the patient too, as he/she is unaware of what exactly happens inside the patient’s body and also doesn’t know how to react to the situation. I hope you get an easy hold on handling your migraine-affected friend with more care and compassion after reading this article.
13 Things Not to Say to Someone with A Migraine: https://www.huffingtonpost.in/2015/08/04/what-not-to-say-to-people-with-migraine_n_4745863.html
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.