Children who suffer from migraines should be given a lot of care and it is necessary to educate the parents or the caregivers as to how to take care of children. They should be educated about how to prevent migraines as well as keep a track of migraine attacks. It becomes the responsibility of the doctor to educate the children, the parents and the caregivers regarding the disease. Those children who have a mild case of migraine should rest and their stress levels should be reduced. It is the responsibility of the doctor to explain to the parents that migraine is not related to tumors found in the brain or any life threatening disease and that proper care, meals on time and adequate amount of sleep should take care of migraines. It is difficult to help a child recognize the signs and symptoms of migraine but it goes a long way if one can take precautions in preventing the migraines. One should maintain a migraine diary for children and twelve hours before the attack, the causes and reasons should be recorded and dealt with. Other factors that should be included in the diary are –
Symptoms that occur before a headache
Activities undertaken before the headache started
The type of headache and the location where it occurred
Medicines that were taken and its after effects.
Before the attack happened, one should note down the sleep cycle and how the changes in sleep patterns affects the migraine.
One should keep a track of the menstrual period if it is applicable.
The most important factor is to record the date and the time when the migraine happened.
One should note down all the foods and drinks that were taken before the attack occurred.
But even after taking all the precautions it is not necessary that one can prevent a migraine attack from reoccurring. When the attack happens it is necessary to make the child lie down and to help the child fall asleep. Sleep is the best form of medicine in the case of migraine. During such an attack one will find a child resting in a foetal position with the affected side of the head on the downside. At times ice packs have been found to be effective as well. Non-steroidal medicines can be helpful when taken during an aura phase or in the early stages of migraine. Medicines that have Acetaminophen, ibuprofen or naproxen can be given to children.
One should not give aspirin to children or even to adolescents. Apart from medicine one can try self-hypnosis or biofeedback which helps children a lot. Since digestion can stop due to migraine therefore absorption of medicines can get delayed and therefore at times carbonated beverages are given to improve digestion.
Only those children who in a week experience one or two migraine attacks should take medicines for preventing migraine, otherwise for mild attacks it shouldn’t be taken as most of these medicines have powerful side effects. Caregivers and parents should understand that it is not possible to entirely prevent migraine attacks as medicines can only reduce the impact and not remove them completely.