It seems like mobile technology today is capable of helping just about anyone with almost anything. Apparently, Migraine health is no exception to the rule! No, your smartphone or tablet can’t cure chronic migraine syndrome but these devices do harbor apps designed to help you better manage migraine episodes and curb symptoms.
There are a ton of tools to choose from and to help narrow down your search; we’ve put together a list of the top 5 migraineur apps. Here’s what they do and why you need them!
By: Better QOL.com
Unlike some of the migraine diary apps on the market, iHeadache will actually draw conclusions about your daily habits and how they affect migraine patterns. With each migraine attack, users can open this free app and enter the start time and duration of the migraine. From there, the app takes users through a simple process to select possible triggers, track migraine severity, record medication usage and monitor the impact of the attack on daily activity. There is even space for users to make their own notes. Every piece of data a user feeds into the app helps the app determine what activities may be causing the migraine attacks.
Why you need it: Understanding potential triggers and how your daily routine influences migraine frequency could be a major piece to your relief puzzle. Imagine discovering that a few of your actions were the root cause of most of your attacks? With this app (which is the most popular and highly rated headache diary app on the market), you could be well on your way to significant relief, just by identifying activities that negatively impact your chronic migraines and working them out of your routine. When it comes time to talk about your chronic migraine syndrome with a doctor, this tool will also ensure that you provide the doctor with enough information to make a correct diagnosis or treatment plan.
SleepBot Sleep Cycle Alarm (Apple & Android)
Sleep deprivation is a common migraine trigger that can be one of the most difficult to control. SleepBot helps monitor nightly sleep patterns to determine how much sleep you’re getting and whether that sleep was restful or not. A graph details your movement throughout the night and a recorder captures sound (beware sleep talkers).
Users can input their ideal sleep times and compare with actual results to see how the two contrast. The app keeps track of sleep patterns for the user to refer back to and outputs an average duration of sleep according to tracked data. Best of all, users can set what is called a ‘smart alarm’ that wakes the user nearest a set time when sleep is at it’s lightest.
Why you need it: Rest is an essential part of maintaining a healthy routine. Your body and brain require time off to refresh. With SleepBot, users are not only taking an active interest in their sleep patterns, but using accurate data to determine whether a problem exists that could be contributing to migraine pain. These findings can be discussed with a doctor or used to alter behavior and reduce migraine attacks.
Acupressure: Heal Yourself (Apple & Android)
By: AM Mobile
Acupressure is an ancient form of therapy that utilizes pressure points on the body to alleviate pain, release muscle tension and induce the circulation of blood. It’s safe to perform on yourself or others and this app will show you how to do it right! Users can select their issue from a list (pain relief, health maintenance, circulatory or digestive disorders, etc.) to view clear and easily understandable illustrations on how and where to apply pressure to relieve their issue.
Why you need it: Studies suggest that acupressure does help lessen or alleviate migraine symptoms. In particular, there are 5 points that are recommended for migraineurs to try:
- Acupoint 01: The crease between the thumb and forefinger when fingers are pressed together.
- Acupoint 07: An indentation on the wrist that aligns with the thumb.
- Acupoint 12: The largest crease inside the wrist, aligned with the thumb.
- Acupoint 26: Pinching the nostril.
- Acupoint L14: Located between the thumb and index finger. But pregnant users beware; this point has been known to induce labor!
Acupressure is a safe therapy to try and may positively impact your migraine episodes.
Med Helper: Prescription App (Apple & Android)
By: Earth Flare Inc.
If you are like many migraineurs and currently take more than one medication to manage your migraines or other health conditions, you already know that keeping your med schedule straight can be challenging. This is especially true if you’re simultaneously battling severe pain. MedHelper is like having a personal healthcare assistant, helping users to track the date, time and dosage of each medication. From simple regimens to complex, MedHelper allows users to keep track of refills, pharmacies, doctors and personal information like allergies, blood type and more. Set alarms, track daily regimens and never stress over your medication schedule again!
Why you need it: Prescription medications can be dangerous if not taken according to doctor’s orders. When you are trying to manage your own treatment while battling with severe pain and a hectic lifestyle, mistakes can happen. Using a tool like MedHelper will add a layer of protection to your care by making sure that the right medications are taken at the right time. The refill tracking feature of this app will also ensure that you don’t run out of a medication before you need it.
Headache Relief – Advanced Binaural Brainwave Entertainment
By: Banzai Labs
Binaural Therapy guides your brainwave activity into a desired state by encouraging it to follow the frequency of an audio signal. Studies suggest that apps like Headache Relief – Advanced Binaural Brainwave Entertainment can reduce headache symptoms, increase concentration, and help with countless other conditions when set to the correct frequency and listened to via headphones. In this particular app, there are several programs to choose from with frequencies that vary and change to guide your mind to a state of relaxation.
Why you need it: Not only has binaural therapy been proven to help with migraine symptom relief, but it also helps with relaxation and sleep, two important components that can often influence a migraineur’s symptoms. It’s safe to use and best of all; the app only costs .99 cents. Before applying this therapy, users should be aware that binaural therapy can be powerful. Your first few listening sessions should be conducted in a safe environment until you understand how your body will respond.
Most of the apps listed here are free or can be purchased for only a couple dollars. At the very least, give them a try to see if they help you better manage your schedule, track your symptoms and even relieve pain. Talk to others within your migraine community; see what they’re using and share any tools that you find to be successful with them. If you have specific questions about some of the therapeutic tools and how they might physically interact with your condition, contact your physician.
Image Source: Kārlis Dambrāns