Migraines: How to manage head pain at work

Posted by K R on

Erika Penzer Kerekes has had migraines for more than 30 years. When she has one, the throbbing pain in her head can make it impossible to do her job. She's a communications manager for a nonprofit in Los Angeles. "I'm usually able to abort the headache soon after I feel it coming on by taking medication and having a cup of coffee. But there have been times when I've had to shut the door to my office, turn off the lights, wrap ice packs around my head, and stretch out on the floor with my feet up the wall until it passes," she says. Migraines can be made worse by stress, exhaustion, bright lights, and noise. That can make the job a tough place to be. More than 90% of people with migraines are unable to work while they're having one. According to the Migraine Research Foundation, Americans lose 13 million workdays each year because of migraines. Kerekes says her boss knows her situation and is accommodating. Plus she says her company has a generous sick-leave policy. But not everyone feels so free to talk about having migraines. Can you be honest about your migraines? Is it really OK to miss work for a headache?

Read More: WebMD

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