Is Your Senior at Increased Risk for Migraines?

Posted: 2/12/2019 8:00 AM by Interim HealthCare
Migraines impact more than 38 million people throughout the United States. These severe headaches can lead to many physical symptoms, but can also negatively impact mental and emotional health and well-being.  This is particularly true for the approximately 3 percent who experience chronic migraines (multiple migraine attacks each month).

Unfortunately, experts estimate that half of those suffering from migraines have not been diagnosed. This means your senior could be suffering without management or treatment. Understanding the risk your parent may face can help you give Mom or Dad the necessary care to reduce risk, and manage migraine care to mitigate the negative impact on quality of life.

Some risk factors for migraines include:
  • Family history of migraines. Approximately 70 percent of those who suffer migraines have family history of the condition.
  • Being female. Women are approximately three times as likely as men to experience migraines.
  • Frequent exposure to common triggers like chocolate and stress. 
If Mom or Dad knowingly suffers from migraines or has mentioned an increased frequency or intensity in headaches, it merits a trip to the doctor. Particularly when other health problems are an issue, seniors may downplay the severity or frequency of migraines and neglect necessary care.

Diagnosis and treatment for migraines.

Doctors often use tests including bloodwork, magnetic resonance imagine (MRI), computerized tomography (CT), or in some cases, a spinal tap to diagnosis migraine disorders. Upon diagnosis, a doctor will look a Mom or Dad's entire lifestyle, including activity, other medical issues, and any other medications to determine the best course of action. 

Standard treatments for migraines may include:
  • Dietary changes, including reduced or eliminated dairy, chocolate, caffeine, or aged meat and cheese.
  • Pain-relieving medications including over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription options to handle pain when migrains arise. 
  • Prevention medications to stave off migraines and prevent their onset altogether.
  • Lifestyle modification including rest, sleep, and meditation.
  • Alternative treatments like acupuncture and massage therapy.

Before starting any treatment for migraines, it is imperative Mom or Dad sees a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment assessment. 

Home care can make a tremendous impact on Mom or Dad's quality of life.

If your aging parent is at increased risk for suffering migraines, integrating senior home care into your care routine can make a tremendous impact on Mom or Dad's life. A senior home care services provider can work with your aging parent on a customized schedule to ensure they have the care needed to boost health, manage risk factors, and reduce the chances of a migraine attack.

If your parent does experience a migraine, this personalized care can also help to cope with symptoms and maintain daily needs. This care can be exceptionally beneficial for your senior, while also giving you the reassurance your senior is getting the proper support and assistance to maintain a high quality of life.

Learn more about senior care, then contact your nearest Interim HealthCare location to get started.