Do you sleep poorly? A migraine awaits you, but … not immediately

The latest reports from scientists show that people who sleep fragmentarily, e.g. new parents, are more likely to experience migraines. Interestingly, it does not occur immediately, but we will feel its effects after a few days. Why?

Less sleep does not cause a headache, however …

A team of researchers from the Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston has initiated new research on the connection between sleep disorders and migraine. Although headaches have been attributed to sleep disorders for a long time, now the problem has been discussed somewhat more accurately. To bring closer the nuances of this relationship, Dr Bertisch and her team conducted a prospective cohort study involving 98 adults. The study included both diary entries and objective sleep measures by actigraphy.

Study participants experienced relatively frequent migraine episodes, but no more than 15 times a month. Their average age was 35 years. As part of the study, they had to fill in an electronic diary twice a day recording their sleep, pain, diet and other habits affecting health for a period of 6 weeks. During the study period, participants experienced a total of 870 migraine episodes. After considering other potential triggers for migraine – including caffeine and alcohol intake, exercise, stress levels and day of the week – the researchers came to some interesting conclusions.

Sleeping for 6.5 hours a day or less, as well as poor quality of sleep, did not affect the occurrence of headache in the subjects. However, there is a difference in the case of intermittent fragmentary sleep. As many as 39% of participants complained of migraines 1 day after (that is, not the day after a “rough” night, but the next one), which was reflected in both diaries and actigraphy.

Migraine – a typical course

The first symptoms of an attack vary due to the type of migraine we’re dealing with. The most typical course of a migraine can be divided into three phases: 

Darkness in front of the eyes, a blur of colours, sensitivity to fragrances, sharp light, white spot on one side of the image. Increasing headache up to acute, sensitivity up to intolerance.

Drowsiness, fatigue, exhaustion.

It should be remembered that each patient feels differently before the migraine attack.  Patients can experience symptoms preceding an attack such as mood swings, impaired concentration and loss of appetite, even a few days earlier.

How to relieve migraine

We can cope with migraine with homemade remedies and even if they do not fight the pain 100%, they will alleviate troublesome symptoms. Here’s what you can do:

– take care of proper hydration and eat small meals regularly. Dehydration and hunger are conducive to the occurrence of migraines and intensify its symptoms. 

– reach for the coffee. Many different over-the-counter painkillers contain caffeine. It is a natural ingredient that in some cases reduces or alleviates headache. Before you reach for stronger medicines, check whether natural supplements are enough.

– lock yourself in the bedroom, close the windows carefully and close the door so that no sounds reach you. You can also try to put a cool compress on your eyes and forehead. You can also cover yourself with a weighted blanket which regulates the nervous system, instead of the usual one.

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