Stay Ahead of Stress
It's no surprise to anyone who's held her head in agony after a fight with the boss, or the week of a big move: stress is a major migraine trigger. Researchers think that a migraine sufferer's nervous system may be especially reactive to stress hormones.
Interestingly, some people experience "let-down" migraines a day or two after a stressful event, possibly caused by the abrupt decrease in stress hormones.
If you suffer from migraines, it's essential to build stress-busting activities—such as deep breathing, listening to music, or swimming laps—into your daily routine. Practicing guided imagery with a CD may also help. Consider A Meditation to Help Relieve Headaches by Belleruth Naparstek.
Research shows that biofeedback can also help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines by teaching you to limit the physical symptoms of stress. For example, you might wear a finger thermometer and practice raising the temperature in your hands. (Warm hands = a calm mind.) To find a biofeedback practitioner near you, visit http://www.bcia.org/.