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Migraines are the bane of many a professional’s daily life, being a specific form of headache that affords seemingly no respite when it comes on. According to Brain Research UK, around 190,000 migraines occur each day, ranging from light inconvenience to full-scale medical events. Migraines, and on a wider level, headaches, can have a real limiting impact on your ability to work – but what can be done to reduce their impact?
Test Your Vision
One of the fundamental root causes of common and frequent migraines is your eyesight. If you are struggling with your vision, you could be introducing unnecessary strain to both your brain and the muscles in your head – leading to pain and discomfort.
As such, getting your eyes tested by an optician could be one of the more effective ways to address your headaches. With contact lenses of the right prescription strength, you will be able to better focus on your work without unknowingly squinting or straining.
Address Your Workstation
There may be some environmental issues exacerbating the incidence of your migraines. There are some people who are particularly sensitive to harsh light and can experience aural migraines as a result of short-term exposure to bright lights or long-term exposure to harsh blue light. A light filter for your computer monitor could reduce the impact of blue light, and make your screen more comfortable to look at. Likewise, any desk or accent lamps in the vicinity should be turned away.
Hydration is important for a great many reasons, but it can have a profound impact on the incidence of migraines – as well as on the health of your eyes, which – as we have thoroughly determined by now – are themselves linked to headaches. Drinking the recommended 8 glasses of water a day ensures your eyes do not dry out and enables waste salts and proteins to leave the brain quicker and smoother.
Lastly, the importance of taking regular breaks from your work can never be understated. There are numerous physical and cognitive benefits to taking breaks, particularly if those breaks incorporate physically leaving your desk or workstation to stretch your legs. With specific regard to eyesight, regular breaks from your desk can give your eyes a chance to relax.
When sitting at a desk and staring at a screen for extended periods of time, your eyes are straining to maintain a relatively close focus. This can cause blurred vision and tension headaches. A good way to formalize the habit of giving your eyes time to rest is to adopt the 20:20:20 rule: every 20 minutes, you remove your gaze from your screen and, for at least 20 seconds, look at something 20 or more feet away. This ‘stretches’ your eye muscles and prevents strain, thus minimizing the possibility of developing migraines.