Why is Tracking Headaches so Crucial to Treatment?

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May 26, 2022
May 5, 2021
2
minutes
Why is Tracking Headaches so Crucial to Treatment?

Tracking your headaches gives you a better perspective of what’s actually happening. Studies have shown that just being more aware of how often your attacks are occurring can improve the frequency of migraines.  For many people, tracking headaches is the first step toward treatment. 

It allows you to be more aware of triggers and patterns.

So many subtleties become apparent when you start tracking.  Whether the trigger is inadequate sleep, stress, or even the barometric pressure dropping - tracking unmasks important factors that can be acted on.  Everyone’s triggers are unique and limiting or avoiding all potential triggers almost never works. When you track your headaches you can come up with a unique and individualized plan for what really affects you. 

Your doctor needs to know how often you have even minor headaches.

There are important subtypes of migraine that are diagnosed specifically based on the frequency of minor versus severe attacks. The treatments your doctor chooses will depend on this information - and some medications will not work effectively if you are treating the wrong kind of headache.  

Are you really getting better? Have you plateaued?

Once you’ve started a treatment plan, it becomes even more important to observe how well (or not) the plan is working.  You might see a slow but gradual improvement when you thought you were stagnating.  You might notice improvement (or worsening) of other symptoms not directly associated with your migraine attacks, that might be attributable to a new medication or other treatment.

You can be aware, early.

Even if you’ve improved it’s important to keep an eye on your attacks. Migraine can sometimes even worsen in people who have their attacks well controlled.  This can tip you off reaching out to your doctor sooner.  Early treatment can break up a bad migraine cycle before it gets worse.

Tracking migraine attacks is universally regarded as a mainstay in migraine treatment.  But sometimes patients have said that can feel onerous to remember what to track. Using a modern tool such as a tracking App can help you develop a new helpful habit that can improve your condition.

That's why Neura Health's user-friendly digital headache tracker makes this important process a lot simpler.  Your tracker data is seamlessly shared with your neurologist ahead of your upcoming virtual appointment, ensuring he or she has the most accurate picture of what you've been experiencing.  That way, you can focus your time together on your upcoming treatment plan, rather than recounting every detail of what you've gone through.

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Thomas Berk, MD
Thomas Berk is Medical Director at Neura Health and a former Clinical Assistant Professor at the Department of Neurology at NYU Grossman School of Medicine.
About the Author
Thomas Berk, MD is Medical Director of Neura Health and a neurologist and headache specialist based in New York City. A former Clinical Assistant Professor at the Department of Neurology at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, he has over 12 years of clinical experience. He graduated from the NYU Grossman School of Medicine and completed his neurology residency at NYU as well. He completed a headache fellowship at the Jefferson Headache Center in Philadelphia. He is an emerging leader of the American Headache Society and has been on the Super Doctors list of rising stars for the past five years.

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