15 Ways to Keep your Migraines at Bay


A migraine is a headache on crack. Okay, so I’ve never tried crack (or any drug of any sort for that matter) but when I compare my migraines to regular headaches, they seem so excessive. A headache is a pain. It’s annoying and it’s uncalled for and it’s irritating. A migraine, on the other hand, is just debilitating. It’s impossible to get out of bed. Light makes you want to die. It’s so painful that you cannot do anything but lie in the dark with a cool towel on your head without moving at all and wish you were in the middle of a root canal or labor without any sort of epidural – with triplets that weigh 12 pounds each. Migraines are really quite bad. I began suffering from them when I was pregnant with my husband’s and my second daughter and I’ve suffered through them for the past 5 years. Even when I was pregnant with our twins last year, I was still suffering from migraines and they were twice as bad (and that’s not a twin joke). I still get them from time to time, and it’s miserable. Fortunately, I’ve learned some very helpful tips and tricks that keep my migraines at bay for the most part.

I’m happy to share those with you, because I do know just how bad they are. They cause you to feel so completely unable to do anything, and they can last for days at a time. So here are a few things I’ve learned will keep my migraines at bay. Please don’t assume they will stop them completely every single time – they work most of the time, but they are not guaranteed to stop you from suffering migraines all together.


I’ve found that the second I feel a headache of any sort coming on, taking 3 Ibuprofen can help relieve the pain almost instantly. It’s been a great help to me when I feel a migraine in its beginning stages.


One of the best ways to keep migraines at bay is to eliminate lack of sleep. It’s not always easy, but good sleep habits can cause you to build your immune system in an impressive way, which can help you ward off headaches from stress and tension.

A Hot Shower

Sometimes it helps me tremendously to take a hot shower in which the water hits me square on my forehead for the time being. It helps to relieve the pressure and make me feel a lot better a lot faster.

A Cold Compress

Cold is another way that I feel better with a migraine. I’ve learned that when I wake up with one, I should take medication, get out of bed, lie on the couch and extend the reclining portion so that I can recline with a cold compress on my head. It helps.

Eliminate Sugar

This is my own personal issue – too much sugar sets off migraines. Your food triggers could be different, so keep a food journal. This is how I was able to pinpoint the fact that sugar was causing my migraines.

Drink Plenty of Water

The more water you drink, the less chance you have of becoming dehydrated. Since dehydration can cause migraines, it’s a good idea to go ahead and make sure that you are always drinking water to keep hydrated.

Avoiding too much Caffeine

Sometimes too much caffeine can cause you to have a headache. It can become a migraine that makes you miserable, so be careful not to consume too much.

Not Avoiding Caffeine all Together

As someone who has several cups of coffee throughout the day, I understand the importance of having plenty of caffeine to feel good. But sometimes I forget to have a cup here or there and I feel a headache begin to form and a migraine come on because of it.

Practice Yoga

Yoga is a stress relieving exercise that makes you feel so much better. It can cause you to suffer fewer migraines because it does help to eliminate a great deal of stress from your life.

Eliminate Stress

Stress is a major cause of migraines, and it’s one of the biggest reasons people suffer. If you can find a way to keep your stress at a minimum so that you’re not left feeling awful, you’re going to appreciate that very much.

Breathe Deeply

If you spend a few minutes a day focusing on your deep breathing, you can calm yourself down, ease your stress and eliminate a bit of your anxiety. This is going to help you feel better so that you’re less overwhelmed and inclined to suffer from a migraine.


Being healthy and active is a great way to boost your immune system. When your immune system is strong and capable, you’re able to suffer from fewer illnesses and live a healthier life.

Eat a Healthy Diet

When you eat right, you are less likely to become sick. When you are less likely to become sick, you are less likely to suffer from debilitating migraines. So keep that in mind the next time you have a weekend away filled with unhealthy foods; it could cause you to develop a migraine.

Lay off the Alcohol

Wine and other drinks make it more likely for you to suffer from a migraine if you already have a headache and/or you are not already feeling very well. Lay off these items until you are 100% and then drink them only in moderation and you will find that you are much happier and much healthier.

Use Good Posture

Good posture is so important to good health. The pressure and stress you put on your back and your neck can actually cause you to suffer from health issues such as migraines. For example, I find that being a writer means I spend a lot of my day hunched over my desk and my computer, and it puts a great deal of stress on my neck muscles and my back. When this gets too overwhelming, I suffer from migraines. I have to get up, exercise, practice good posture and even get a monthly massages to ensure that I’m feeling good to go.

Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images


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