Why You Must Track Your Migraine Medication Use

We wish there was a single, magical pill that delivered complete relief from chronic migraine symptoms – but that just isn’t the reality. Most patients are recommended a combination of over-the-counter and prescription medications to combat the cascade of symptoms accompanied by a migraine attack, including:

Any time you’re taking multiple drugs at once, its imperative you track what you take, when you take it, how much of it you take and how the medication influences your condition. Otherwise, You’ll be unable to distinguish if and how the drugs are helping and you could put yourself at risk for misusing medications. A migraine diary makes medication tracking easy. And best of all, new apps like iHeadache for Apple or My Migraine Log for Android enable you to track on the go – leaving no room for excuses. Here are 3 other important reasons why you must track your migraine medication usage.

You may also be interested in this: The Top 5 Migraine Apps and Why You Need Them

1. Reference For Physicians

When it comes to migraine treatment – knowledge is power…

If, at any point during your journey to find migraine relief, you decide to switch physicians or see a specialist, you can save a lot of time by providing your new doctors with a comprehensive history of your prescription and non-prescription medication usage. By giving them a record of your treatment history, they may be able to identify an alternative approach to your care that requires less migraine medication, results in fewer side effects and delivers better relief. Most importantly, you can skip all the new doctor formalities by arriving to your first appointment prepared with everything they’ll want to know. 

The same can be said for existing physicians. Provide them with a greater level of insight into how often you are using medication. If they see that you are using certain drugs too often, they may switch you to a more effective regimen to cut back on the amount you need to feel relief.

Here’s why a migraine diary can save your life: Can A Migraine Diary Save your Life?

2. Reference For Yourself

Migraine medications have a way of changing on sufferers and what works today might not have the same effect tomorrow. If this occurs, your greatest resource for answers will be your trusty migraine diary. Even the slightest change to your routine could be enough to alter the way your medication(s) react with one another and your body. Your migraine tracker will be able to quickly determine whether the sudden change in impact is due to:

  • Medication misuse
  • Change in Habit
  • Introduction of new medication or supplement
  • Diet/lifestyle change

Armed with this insight, you can call your physician with answers to all the initial questions they are likely to ask – saving you both time and getting you to a solution faster.

3. Determinant of Other Treatment Procedures

In the migraine world, the efficacy of treatment could indicate that a patient is an ideal candidate for procedures that offer more lasting results. Take Botox injections, for example, which can be a determinant for migraine relief surgery (the removal of the peripheral nerves thought to contribute to migraine pain). More invasive yet proven and lasting procedures commonly won’t be considered until all other treatment options have been exhausted. This is where a detailed migraine medication log will work in your favor. By illustrating what treatments you’ve already tried, your doctor will be better equipped to determine what treatments you can try next.

The major point we’re making here is that tracking your migraine medication usage is one powerful way for you to take control of your treatment regimen and help physicians narrow down the best possible medications and interventions for your unique condition. Download a free migraine diary or a mobile device app and start recording as much information about your daily diet, activities and medication intake as possible. Schedule time into your day and make logging information a habit.  Lastly, share findings with your physician(s) to make certain the road to relief you’re on has you traveling in the right direction.

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Image Source: Gatis Gribusts

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