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College may be hazardous to your health

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“Ask The Experts” is written and provided by Scholarship Media. It does not reflect the views of The Collegian or its advertisers.

I was never sick in high school. I started getting headaches in college. What can I do?

This question is relevant for nearly all college students. Headaches and migraines are the most under-reported and undertreated condition for students. Statistics vary widely on this problem, but over 40 percent of students typically suffer at least one incident every few months. This is much higher than the 12 percent reported by adults.

You may be suffering a migraine, much more severe than a headache. Some may need prescription medicine. Studies show that migraines are often an inherited tendency.

College lifestyle is considered a major cause of the problem, because it triggers the attacks. It is no surprise that triggers include: lack of sleep, change in routine, stress, lack of exercise, and diet. Diet means eating your favorite fast foods, particularly artificial sweeteners and MSG.

Headaches/migraines lead to missed classes and loss of study time. This has focused attention by researchers and doctors to better understand the problem.

You need to be more proactive, beyond typical responses of aspirin, head massage and darkening the room, advises Axon Optics, a pioneer in migraine research. Identification and reduction of the triggers that effect you is the best first step.  

With so many suffering real effects, most still choose to suffer in silence.