What Is a Migraine Hangover?
A migraine hangover, also called postdrome, is the last stage of a migraine. It can linger a few hours to more than a day after the headache goes away. Postdromes don’t always come, but experts believe that they happen up to 80% of the time.
There’s also no way to know how intense your postdrome will be. It isn’t necessarily linked to how severe your migraine is.
Symptoms of a Migraine Hangover
How do you know if you’re having postdrome? Symptoms vary, but you might be:
- Unable to concentrate
- In a general bad mood
- Drained or washed out
You might also notice physical symptoms, like:
Causes of Migraine Hangover
Researchers don’t think one single thing causes postdrome. It’s part of the migraine itself, as it affects systems all over your body.
Migraine Hangover Treatment and Home Remedies
A doctor who specializes in headaches can help you understand your migraines and find treatments that work.
Once you’re in postdrome, it’s important to practice what’s called good headache hygiene.
Do you notice that your postdrome is worse when you look at a screen? Stay off your phone or laptop.
You can also try:
- Ice packs
- Heating pads
It can be a good idea to keep a headache diary. On a notepad, on your phone, or in an app, keep track of:
- What your symptoms are
- How you’ve dealt with them
- Which things work or don’t work
This will help you in the future when you need to feel better.
Don’t ignore your symptoms or try to push through them and return to your regular life too fast. Let yourself recover completely from both the headache and the postdrome before you dive back into everything.
Migraine Hangover Prevention
During the earlier phases of the migraine -- prodrome, aura, and headache -- make sure you stay hydrated and try to do some light stretches if possible.
Avoid anything that makes your migraine worse, like overstimulation or trying to do too much too fast.
Of course, one of the best ways to prevent the postdrome phase is to avoid a migraine in the first place. How do you do that?