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Migraines and Other Headaches

Recognizing Migraine HeadachesWho Can Help?, The Doctor Takes The History, The Physical Exam, Other Diagnostic ToolsDraw A Picture Of Your Headache, Honesty Is The Best Policy

Headaches are scary. Headaches interfere with your life. Headaches make you depressed. However, the more you know about your headaches, the better you will be able to deal with them. Steve Lindner, M.D., a pediatric neurologist in Dallas, Texas, says that most kids want to know three things about their headaches:

  • What is the cause?
  • What will make my headaches better?
  • Are you sure I don't have a life-threatening illness?

Most people don't go to the doctor if they feel they don't have to. Even those with the most severe headaches tend to treat themselves with over-the-counter pain medications, or just suffer. But when headaches start to interfere with your life, you need to get help.

Draw A Picture Of Your Headache

Think back to your most recent headache. Was it unusually bad? Can you remember the worst headache you ever had? Do you have a headache right now? Try to draw how it feels. Where does it hurt? How much does it hurt? What color is it? Make some labels to go with your picture. Draw cartoons. Take your pictures to your doctor. You will be surprised how much he or she will appreciate it.

Honesty Is The Best Policy

Above all, be honest with yourself and your doctor.

“I was missing school because of headaches,” says Natasha. “When the doctor asked me — right in front of my mom — about drinking alcohol, I said, ‘Oh, I don't drink!’ Yeah, right. I was drink ing every weekend and staying up half the night. No wonder I had headaches.”

Additional topics

Medicine EncyclopediaMigraines and Other Headaches