Posts made in October 2021

Predicting and Treating Migraines

Anyone who has ever experienced a migraine before knows that it can ruin your day—or sometimes even your week. That is why patients are always looking for ways to predict when a migraine might develop and come up with a treatment to stop it as soon as possible.

Pain management specialists are doing the same thing. Through research, they are developing the latest migraine treatments in Jacksonville, FL, to help patients better understand what is causing their migraines, how to predict them, and how to treat them.

For example, premonitory symptoms are the first indications of an impending migraine episode. These symptoms can occur a few hours or several days before a migraine reaches its peak. By learning how to recognize these symptoms, many patients are able to use home remedies or take medications that can help stop a migraine from progressing.

While nobody’s premonitory symptoms are precisely the same, the most common symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Mood Changes
  • Gastrointestinal Symptoms
  • Muscle Stiffness, Aching, or Pain
  • Food Cravings or a Loss of Appetite
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Confusion
  • Sensitivity to Light, Smells, or Sounds
  • Excessive Yawning

Once you recognize your premonitory symptoms, you can begin to make adjustments to address them and help you reduce or avoid the impact a full-blown migraine can have on your life. Some migraine treatment options include:

  • Lifestyle – Stay Hydrated, relax, exercise, and avoid your usual migraine triggers. Try incorporating a mindfulness routine, yoga practice, and good sleep hygiene.
  • Medication – If you have had success with a migraine treatment—such as an NSAID or prescription medication—try taking it during your prodrome to see if it will minimize your migraine before it peaks. It is important to remember that you should not take medication during both your premonitory phase and during the headache phase without your physician’s recommendation.
  • Social – If you notice you are entering your premonitory phase, it is good to let your loved ones know what is going on. This can help you get the support you need—such as childcare or running errands—while also letting those you interact with know you could be more sensitive or easily angered.
Pain Management

The Connection Between Smoking and Chronic Pain

Many smokers turn to their cigarettes not just for comfort, but also for relief when dealing with chronic pain. But while nicotine might induce some short-term pain relief, over time, it can worsen your pain. So how can something that delivers some form of pain relief actually make things worse? Allow our experts in pain management in St. Augustine, FL, to explain.

The nicotine in tobacco is excellent at tricking the body into feeling better—at first. Smoking triggers the release of chemicals—such as dopamine—that can give you a satisfying sensation. You may not realize that the same tobacco is impairing the delivery of oxygen-rich blood to your tissues and bones. That decrease in blood and nutrient flow can cause degeneration, fatigue, and slower healing. That means that smoking is just going to make  those painful conditions you are trying to fight worse over time.

In addition, smokers are rarely the best candidates for potentially life-changing treatments. That means even if there are some solutions available for the chronic pain you are dealing with, if you are smoking, you may not be able to see any benefits from them.

So, if you are dealing with chronic pain of any sort and want to begin seeing some relief of any kind, it is time to put down those cigarettes and pick up the phone to call a pain management specialist. There are better, healthier ways to treat your pain.