Updated February 2021

How keeping a headache diary can help ease your migraine symptoms

When a headache strikes it can take you down for the entire day and more. Headaches and chronic migraines can keep you from enjoying life or earning a living, but there is a way you can take control of this frustrating and painful condition.

If you are suffering from frequent headaches it could be beneficial to keep a headache diary to keep track of pain levels, possible triggers for the headache, and the times of day that the headache starts. A headache diary is a very simple but effective method of keeping track of your headaches and helping us to provide you with the right treatment plan for you.

Some Ideas of What to Record in Your Headache Diary

  • Time the headache started and ended
  • Location of the pain (temples, behind eyes, back of the neck, etc.)
  • Type of pain (stabbing, pressing, throbbing, etc.)
  • Pain intensity from 1 – 10
  • Are any other symptoms present? Nausea? Dizziness?
  • Medication or treatment taken
  • Did the medication or treatment work?
  • How was your normal routine affected?
  • Did you sleep well the night before the headache? How many hours of sound sleep did you get?
  • What did you eat or drink before the headache? Diet sodas, caffeine, artificial sweeteners, and chocolate are all headache triggers.
  • Was stress a factor today?

No Two Headaches Are The Same

You might think that your headaches are of the same intensity today as they were yesterday, but very often we find that no two days are the same. You may have eaten a trigger food yesterday or been under more stress today. By recording the details of every headache episode in your diary, you may start to notice an obvious pattern of events that you hadn’t noticed before.

Keeping a headache diary over a 2 week period can really help us to diagnose your headache or migraine problems and to recommend the right course of treatment for you.

A Headache Diary Can Help To Prevent Headaches from Occurring

If your headaches are stress-related, our team at the New Jersey HeadacheInstitute will work with you to lower those stress levels and to find ways in which you can reduce your headaches by making lifestyle changes. If your headaches are random, as some often are, we can work on finding the right pain management treatment that will deliver swift relief when you need it the most. By keeping a regular headache diary, you could prevent headaches from occurring in the first place.

Just a Few Minutes a Day Can Make A Big Difference

It is important that you are disciplined when keeping your headache diary. By taking your diary with you wherever you go, you can record each episode as it happens, where it happens. A lot of our patients keep a note of their headaches by using their cell phones. Most people have their phones with them at all times and diary entries can quickly be entered or even spoken into their smartphone quickly and easily.

Want Relief? Schedule a Consultation with National Headache Institute Today!

At National Headache Institute, we’re here to help you get lasting relief from your headaches. Contact our specialists in migraine management today to book a consultation at one of our three headache clinic locations in Houston, Miami or New Jersey. Your headache diary can help us to find the right migraine and headache treatment that best suits your individual needs.