Winter Health Woes—Solved!
Why now? Changes in diet, weather, sleep patterns, and stress or hormone
levels can trigger these headaches. You'll know it's a migraine if you have
throbbing pain and nausea, vomiting, and/or sensitivity to light and noise.
What to do: Watch what you eat, especially if cheese, wine, and chocolate
trigger your migraines. Also, reduce stress and maintain a regular sleep
schedule. At the first twinges of a migraine, take an OTC pain reliever such as
Advil. For moderate to severe migraines, ask your doctor about a prescription
medication such as Imitrex.
Why now? Hitting the party circuit can mean drinking more than usual. And
downing too much alcohol causes dehydration, irritates the stomach, lowers
blood sugar, and disrupts sleep-a recipe for next-day headaches, shakiness,
nausea, and exhaustion.
What to do: Drink less. When you do indulge, limit yourself to two-and drink
a glass of water in between to prevent dehydration and increase the time over
which the alcohol is absorbed. If the damage is already done, pop an OTC
painkiller such as Advil or Aleve before bed-with lots of water-to reduce
hangover symptoms, says Robert Swift, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at Brown
University. Queasy? Take Pepto-Bismol that night and in the morning. Then stay
hydrated by drinking water. Also consider taking a walk: Exercise increases
blood flow and oxygen intake, so you'll feel like yourself again faster.