Migraine is a severe, chronic headache, often accompanied by nausea and sensitivity to light, that can be debilitating at times. Some people experience an aura as a precursor, or warning sign, just prior to the onset of the migraine. The aura may appear as flashing lights or tingling in arms and legs. To stop the aura and eventual migraine, start treating the migraine as soon as aura symptoms are experienced.
Things You'll Need
- Over-the-counter medications and ointments
- Prescription medication
- Dark room
- Hot washcloth or shower
- Ice pack
- Vitamins, herbs and minerals
Take a preventative migraine medication if your migraines tend to happen at least two times a month. These are prescribed by your doctor, who will advise you to either take them daily or prior to known stimuli, such as menstruation in women.
Take an over-the-counter pain reliever immediately when an aura begins. Ibuprofen and aspirin can soothe a mild migraine. A stronger combination of acetaminophen, aspirin and caffeine, as found in Excedrin, can also be used.
Drink plenty of fluids to keep your body hydrated, especially if you have been feeling nauseated and vomiting.
Rest in a dark room, as light can sometimes trigger or aggravate an oncoming migraine. Some people find it beneficial to go to sleep, though sometimes too much sleep can worsen a headache.
Relax. Some people find relaxation techniques, such as meditation or yoga, to help offset the migraine. Get a massage.
Use cold therapy. Some people like to use an ice pack. Others may use a hot washcloth that they allow to cool on their head and face. Over-the-counter products such as Head-On, Icy Hot and Mentholatum can also ease symptoms.
Use heat therapy. Some people benefit from taking a hot shower or sitting in a bathroom that is steaming up. Others may like a hot water bottle. For some, though, this could make it worse.
Try alternative treatments, such as biofeedback and acupuncture, to prevent or reduce migraine onset.
Try using herbs, such as feverfew and butterbur (if you are not pregnant), to relieve migraine auras and migraine onset. Riboflavin, CoenzymeQ10 and magnesium supplements may also relieve symptoms. Homeopathic combinations can be found at natural stores. Remember, when using herbs, check with your doctor or pharmacist about any interactions with any drugs you may also be taking.