For those people who battle chronic migraines and headaches, the prospect of Thanksgiving and Christmas can leave them wondering… how are they supposed to enjoy the season?
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make sure the holidays a bit easier — and hopefully migraine free.
1. Manage Your Food Triggers
This is a no-brainer. Since the holidays center around food — do you know which foods will trigger a migraine? If you’re hosting dinner, be sure to prepare some foods that you can eat without triggering a migraine. If you’re attending a dinner hosted by someone else, take something with you that you know you can eat without triggering a migraine.
2. Plan and Prep
Keep in mind that many foods can be prepared in advance and frozen. Some, you’ll want to cook, then freeze; others, you may well want to get ready to cook, then freeze to be cooked on the holiday itself. If you don’t have enough freezer space, check with a friend, neighbor, or family member to see if they can store some frozen foods for you.
3. Delegate, Delegate, Delegate!
Do you have a list of things that need to be done before the holiday? There can be many tasks that have to be done and checked off, especially if you’re hosting the celebration. You don’t have to do it all yourself. Let family and friends help. Assign tasks to those best suited to them. Make it a BYOB party. Ask everyone to bring their own drinks and a dish to share. Your guests will enjoy it just as much as they would if you take on all the food and drink preparation. You’ll enjoy it more!
4. Issue Requests With Your Invitation
Are fragrances a migraine trigger for you? If so, it’s NOT rude to ask people not to wear them around you, especially if the celebration is in your home. If you’re hosting the celebration, think about written or emailed invitations, even for close family. This gives you the opportunity to ask that people not wear colognes, perfumes, or other scented products that will trigger a migraine.
5. Watch Your Sleep Schedule
There are various sleep problems that can be triggers:
- too much sleep
- too little sleep
- disrupted sleep
- poor quality sleep
- irregular sleep schedule
It’s recommended that migraine sufferers go to bed and get up at the same time every day, including weekends, holidays, and vacations.
Sit Back and Enjoy
Surround yourself with family and friends who truly care about you, and they won’t care if every detail is perfect. Do what you can do – no more – then relax.