CAYMAN ISLANDS – Dr. Rose Giammarco, one of Canada’s leading headache experts, says headache disorders continue to be underestimated, underrecognized and undertreated.
The renowned headache specialist, who has been hosting a monthly series of “headache treatment” clinics at Health City Cayman Islands, believes that appropriate recognition, diagnosis and treatment, as well as lifestyle modification and patient education, can improve significant disability and quality of life in affected patients.
The medical expert said headaches are among the most common complaints presented to the family physician’s office. Additionally, almost 50 percent of the adult population reporting a headache within the last year.
Of these, more than 30 percent reported migraine. Chronic migraine, defined as a headache on 15 or more days of the month. This affects between two and four percent of the world’s adult population.
“Chronic migraine carries with it a significant disability. According to a 2013 global burden of disease study, migraine was found to be the sixth-highest because of worldwide years lost due to disability,” Dr. Giammarco stated.
Tips For Easing Headache Pain
The neurology specialist endorses The American Migraine Foundation “SEEDS” advice for migraine management:
- Sleep: Keep your bedtime and the number of hours of sleep you get the same each night in a cool, dark room.
- Exercise: Physical activity can reduce the frequency, severity and duration of migraine attacks.
- Eat: Have regular meals throughout the day, stay hydrated and avoid fasting. Meals that are high in protein, fiber and healthy fats and low in processed foods will help prevent dips in blood sugar that may trigger a migraine attack.
- Diary: To receive an accurate diagnosis of your migraine and optimized treatment options, keep a headache diary and share it with your doctor.
- Stress reduction: Virtual tools, such as apps like Headspace and Calm, are helpful resources that can guide you through relaxation techniques, mindfulness exercises, meditations, breathing techniques, and biofeedback.
Worldwide headache and migraine communities are continuously working together for headache disorders to be recognized as legitimate neurobiological diseases. They also encourage people with migraines or chronic headaches to consult a medical professional for proper diagnosis and treatment and aim to enlighten individuals with headache disorders about the various treatments available.
Health City’s headache clinics, led by Dr. Giammarco, are held monthly at its East End clinic. The next round will be offered on December 8 and 9, 2022.