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National Headache Awareness Week 2005:
Stop Migraines Before They Stop You

June 4, 2005

“By effectively managing Migraine with the acute and preventive medications currently available, Migraine does not have to be a quality-of-life altering condition. Get diagnosed, get treated and get on with your life...”

– Dr. Seymour Diamond
founder and executive chairman, National Headache Foundation

 

 


June 5-11, 2005, has been declared National Headache Awareness Week (NHAW) by the National Headache Foundation (NHF) in an effort to educate the public about the impact and severity of Migraine disease, and support the more nearly 33 million American Migraineurs. This year’s theme is “Stop Migraines Before They Stop You.” According to an online survey conducted by the NHF:

  • 51% of sufferers experience more than 10 Migraine attacks per month.

  • 52% have missed holiday celebrations because of their condition.

  • 92% have missed a hobby-related activity

  • Migraine sufferers also lose 157 million work days each year, which in turn costs industry $50 billion annually.

  • 90% of sufferers have been unable to complete a work or school day because of a Migraine attack.

  • 41% feel that their boss and/or co-workers are not understanding of their condition.

  • 46% believe that their Migraines have caused them to miss out on career advancement opportunities.

The NHF has established three goals for National Headache Awareness Week:

  • to gain recognition of Migraine pain as a real and legitimate condition

  • to let sufferers know that there are new treatments available

  • to encourage sufferers to see a healthcare provider for proper diagnosis and treatment.

National Headache Awareness Week emphasizes five tips to stop Migraines before they stop you:

  1. Get Diagnosed. Only by receiving an accurate diagnosis can Migraine sufferers begin the process of taking control of their condition.

  2. Partner With Your Healthcare Provider. A wide variety of treatment options exist and together with your healthcare provider you can determine which is most appropriate for your individual circumstances.

  3. Identify Your Triggers. Keep a headache diary including foods, time of onset, pain duration and location or other factors that you experience with your Migraine attack.

  4. Use Effective Self-Management Strategies. Work with your healthcare provider to determine if techniques such as massage, guided imagery or biofeedback could improve your condition.

  5. Utilize The National Headache Foundation As A Resource. Call 1-888-NHF-5552 or visit www.headaches.org for Migraine-related topic sheets, to find a support group in your area, subscribe to NHF Head Lines, and much more.

Summary
Migraine is a true neurological disease characterized by episodes or attacks that may or may not include a headache among their symptoms. Still, too many people are under the misconception that Migraines are "just bad headaches." Because of this and other misconceptions, Migraineurs face not only the physical pain of the disease, but unnecessary emotional pain caused by being misunderstood and not receiving the support they need. To the five tips the NHF offers, I would add Educate Yourself About Migraine Disease. Being educated about Migraine disease is essential to working as a partner with doctors and other healthcare professionals as well as educating those around us. In the words of Dr. William B. Young of the Jefferson Headache Center, “An educated patient is a better patient. I'd rather have a treatment partner than a dishrag.” If your doctor is not willing to work with you as a treatment partner, it's time to find a new doctor. Remember, you are ultimately responsible for your own health, and your doctors work for you. We live in a new era, an era in which patients are beginning to ask questions and expect answers. Good doctors know and respect that. Taking charge of our health care ensures better care, and knowledge is essential to taking charge.
 


National Headache Foundation Press Release: “NATIONAL HEADACHE AWARENESS WEEK JUNE 5-11: National Headache Foundation Offers 5 Tips to Stop Migraines Before They Stop You.” Chicago. May, 2005.

 

 
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NOTE: The information on this site is for education and support only. It is not medical advice and should not be construed as such. Always consult your physician if you have new or different symptoms. Never change your treatment regimen or add herbals, supplements, etc., without consulting your doctor.

 The American Headache and Migraine Association (AHMA)...

a patient-focused, patient-driven organization for patients with Migraine and
other headache disorders and their family, friends, and care partners.
Anyone interested in the concerns or patients with these disorders is welcome to join.

The AHMA exists to EASE the burden of Migraine and other headache disorders through Education, Awareness, Support, and Engagement.

www.ahma.ws


 

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NOTE: The information on this site is for education and support only. It is not medical advice and should not be construed as such. Always consult your physician if you have new or different symptoms. Never change your treatment regimen or add herbals, supplements, etc., without consulting your doctor.

All content on this site is physician reviewed by Dr. John Claude Krusz.

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