Five ways you can ease a migraine at work

Have you ever been at work when you suddenly begin to get the dreaded migraine sensation?

It differs from person to person, but everyone has at least one giveaway sign that a migraine is about to come on. If you have been in these shoes, you know just how difficult it can be. 

You can no longer get any work done, all the lights feel so bright, you are sensitive to all the noises around you, you may have vision problems, and your head is throbbing. Focusing on your work is nearly impossible and all you want to do is lie down and close your eyes. 

Unfortunately, when you’re at work you don’t always have the luxury of taking a break or heading home for the day. That is why it is important to have some tips and tricks in your arsenal on how to subdue migraine pain at the workplace. So you can beat your migraine as quickly as possible, or at the very least reduce the pain significantly. 

In this post, we will take a look at five ways you can ease a migraine at work as quickly as possible, so you can get on with your day and accomplish your tasks.

1) Grab a cold pack or ice 

If a migraine strikes at work, the chances are what you have available to help with a headache is limited.

However, you may have an ice machine, or perhaps you or a co-worker brings an ice pack to work in a lunchbox. Whichever option you have, take the ice (or something else that is cold), wrap in a towel or paper towel, and hold it on your forehead.

Hold there for about 15 minutes or until you feel the throbbing pain in your head subsiding. Studies have also confirmed the success of holding ice on your neck to stop a migraine as well. 

Much of the time, if you catch it right from the very start, this can get rid of a migraine before you get a full-blown one.

2) Find a darker room

If you can leave your desk at work and find a room, perhaps an empty meeting room, where you can rest your eyes in dimmer light, it can help fight off a migraine. At the very least, it can soothe your eyes and give your head a bit of a break. 

Bright and flickering light can cause a migraine and make it worse, so staying in a brightly lit office area is one of the worst things you can do for a migraine. 

3) Drink coffee 

Although you may think this should be the last thing you do, drinking caffeine in moderation can ward off migraines and headaches.

If you drink caffeine in the early stages of a migraine, it could save you from getting a full migraine and will ease the intensity of the pain and symptoms you typically experience. 

If you have no other choice and need to take pain medication, like Tylenol, to fight off a migraine, taking the medication with caffeine will also enhance the pain-fighting benefits. 

It’s important to keep in mind that drinking too much coffee and other forms of caffeine can actually trigger migraines and headaches. So stick with one cup per day and limit the amount of caffeine you consume to fight off a migraine. 

4) Drink water

When you first begin the get that head pounding feeling, drink some water as quickly as possible. One of the biggest triggers for migraines is lack of water and dehydration. Sometimes all you need to do is properly hydrate your body to get rid of a migraine before it has the chance to fully develop. 

You should always keep a filled water bottle on your desk at work, so you have easy access to drinking water during the workday. You will feel more inclined to keep hydrating during the day if you always have water easily accessible. 

5) Relax, destress, and take a break

It’s not always possible to do so, but the best thing you can do when you feel a migraine brewing is to take a break from work and relax.

A migraine is often brought on by stress, so taking a step back at work, doing some deep breathing, and maybe getting some fresh air outside can help you stop a migraine. 

If possible, find a quiet spot in the office to rest your head on a table, close your eyes, and relax for 10-20 minutes. You can also try some light neck stretches to release any tension in your neck, shoulders, and upper back that may be contributing to the migraine in the first place. 

Seek help if you get migraines often

If you suffer from recurrent migraines, it may be time to speak with your doctor or get advice from another healthcare professional. There can be many different causes for migraines and getting to the root cause of yours will be the most effective way for managing migraines.

Many people have huge success with seeing chiropractors to help manage recurrent migraines. A misaligned spine, tension in the back, and other factors can contribute significantly to migraine headaches. 

In the end, sometimes a migraine at work will happen and you have no control over when it hits and when it does not. The best thing you can do in this situation is have all the tips and tricks possible to help you fight off that migraine, so you can get back to work and end your day successfully and productively.

Dr. Brent Wells is an experienced chiropractor in Wasilla where he has successfully treated hundreds of patients suffering from migraines, headaches, and other chronic issues.