According to the Migraine Trust, one in seven people suffer from migraines. If you are one of those people, you know how the onset of a migraine can affect your work life. So how do you cope? What changes can you make? Take a look at our top tips for managing your migraines at work.
Keep a diary to work our your triggers
Migraines can be triggered by a wide range of factors including stress, skipping meals, caffeine and spending long periods of time at a computer screen. While you can’t fully control your migraines, there are things you can do to understand what triggers them and how to avoid these triggers.
By keeping a diary of your migraines and what was happening in your life when they occur, you can start to work out if there are any patterns in what causes them and adjust your day accordingly. You might, for example, find that they occur when you’ve had more coffee than usual, or when you haven’t stepped away from your desk all day.
Tell your employer
This may seem obvious but being open with your employer is essential. They can’t help if they don’t know. Tell them you suffer from migraines and work out a plan to help you avoid triggers.
Don’t get stressed
OK, so this one is easier said than done, but stress in the workplace can be a major factor for migraine sufferers. As with all triggers, it’s all about managing it the best you can to lessen the likelihood of a migraine attack. Think about what it is that causes you stress and work out how you can combat it. Talk to your manager about ways you can handle your workload and plan your time carefully to avoid unnecessary stress.
Once you know your triggers you can start to make changes to help manage your migraines. Some common things you can try in the workplace include using an anti-glare screen, slowly reducing the amount of caffeine you drink (some people find cutting it out all at once can trigger a migraine), taking regular breaks from your screen and making sure you don’t skip lunch no matter how busy you are.
You can find a wealth of information on coping with migraines on the Migraine Trust website.