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I have suffered from migraines off and on most of my life. My neurologist gave me tips on how to figure out what my triggers are. If you suffer from migraines or severe headaches, you may be able to see a pattern for when they occur. The worst time for a migraine to strike is when you are on vacation. Below are ways to prevent a migraine while traveling.
This summer our family took a trip to the Smoky Mountains. This vacation was unlike our usual trips, seeing as my sister and her two little girls went with us. This was the first time my sister and I have taken a vacation together since we were kids. I remember camping with my grandparents when I was around 7-years-old, now her 7-year-old daughter went with us!
Unfortunately, a migraine struck me while on the trip so severe I was sick to my stomach. Brought on by increased elevation, motion sickness, allergy attack and stress, my migraine almost ruined my trip.
5 Ways to Prevent a Migraine While Traveling
When I was a teen I took daily preventative medication, but as an adult I prefer not to. Instead I do what I can to avoid triggering a migraine when possible and always stay prepared with my essentials to knock them out.
Limit Car Sickness
When taking a road-trip, car sickness can exacerbate a migraine. Even if you are not one to usually deal with motion sickness, being confined in a vehicle for a long time can be tasking. When we drive from Texas to Tennessee the winding road starts to get to me. A few ways I limit car sickness are:
- Take Breaks – Never pass a rest stop. Get out and stretch your legs and breathe the fresh air.
- Forgo Reading in the Car – Looking down at a book or your electronic device can heighten the sensation of motion from the vehicle.
- Lemon Freshener – I use a few drops of lemon essential oil to keep the car smelling fresh during a road-trip. Cutting into a fresh lemon has been known to decrease nausea, which also helps when dealing with car sickness.
Staying hydrated is important for everyone, not just migraine sufferers. When on vacation you may stay busier than normal. Remember to always carry a bottle of water with you. This is especially important if your travels require you to spend a lot more time outdoors than usual. For example, camping, hiking, or boating may be outside of your normal daily activities and can trigger headaches when your body is strained. Remember to drink plenty of water and take rest stops in the shade.
You can tell from this photo how swollen my eyes were. Drinking lots of water also helps my allergies, which is one of the ways to prevent a migraine.
Avoid Food Triggers
There are many common foods that are known to cause problems for migraine sufferers. Chocolate and processed foods are some of the popular few. However, my neurologist suggested I keep a log of what I eat on the days that I experience a migraine to check for consistencies. While on vacation it is not as easy to cook all your own meals, so by knowing what your food triggers are you can find restaurants that suit your needs.
I always carry a small travel bag with me everywhere I go. Being prepared to handle a migraine when it strikes is imperative. No matter how much I follow the ways to prevent a migraine, there are still times I suffer from them. My daughters now both suffer from severe headaches and migraines as well. My oldest deals with tension and hormonal headaches whereas my middle child deals with doctor diagnosed migraines similar to mine.
Excedrin® provides fast relief from multiple headache types. As the #1 Neurologist Recommended* medication for migraine sufferers, Excedrin® Migraine starts to relieve the pain in 30 minutes. Consult your doctor if you think you are suffering from migraines and always use the over-the-counter medication as directed on the packaging. Remember to read the Excedrin® warnings of usage.
*Among OTC medicine for migraines. Symphony Health Solutions, 2016
I also carry Excedrin® Extra Strength with me when traveling with my oldest adult daughter. I hate to see anyone suffer from a severe headache and I know firsthand how they can ruin your day. The fast headache relief from Excedrin® Extra Strength is perfect for her, since she has not been diagnosed with migraines.
You can find both Excedrin® Extra Strength and Excedrin® Migraine at Walmart in the pharmacy aisle.
Cut Back on Stress
Traveling can be stressful. From planning a vacation to taking a long trip away from home, there are many factors that play into stressing your mind and body. Try to plan ahead and relax while on vacation as much as possible. Being stressed can trigger a migraine, even days after calming down. Try to focus on the mindset that no matter how hard you plan, things may come up.
Have you ever taken a family vacation where Excedrin® could have saved the day?