A flat lay of water, a granola bar, a medicine bottle, and sunglasses. All of these are items that the author references in their article as part of their migraine survival kit.

Sawyer’s Fun Migraine Survival Tools

There’s something satisfying yet depressing about knowing what your migraine triggers are.

Yes, I know know that direct sunlight can make my head pain start throbbing which makes days on movie sets pretty stressful. I mean, how long can I endure being in the direct sunlight running from monsters?

I won't let migraine hold me back

People don’t get to have these life experiences every day, so I try and do everything that I can to be in front of that Hollywood movie camera. On these types of exhaustive days, I always go through my various stages of migraine consideration, like “Oh well, I can’t be outside because it’ll hurt,” and “Well, I’m just going to tough it out and feel the pain.”

These don't work for me.

I should not have to rob myself of precious life experiences like being on set with A-list actors! I want to be able to live an interesting life without migraine handcuffing me to a dark and comforting room.

My migraine survival tools

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t listen to your body and shut out the world, but here are a couple handy tools I have found that have helped me keep this acting career that I am dearly working towards whilst also dealing with the inevitable migraine that can come along with it.


I try to keep them with me pretty often, both in my backpack and in my car. I never know when harsh sun will be an issue, and sunglasses do wonders for visual migraine triggers. They’re not only very cool, but they’re also a socially acceptable sleep mask. I have actually worn mine during a directing class at my university. If you own that look, you can totally get away with wearing them inside.

Granola bar

I super enjoy having snacks on the go. I often get migraine from overexertion without food and that low blood sugar can be a killer. Eating carbs drastically helps me lower the effects of an oncoming migraine, so I try to carry food around with me if at all possible. On a side note, don’t carry one in your butt pocket. That’s your sitting pocket and it will render any food into smithereens.


STAY HYDRATED. Don’t wait till you have a dark pee to drink water! There are several really cute apps that encourage you to keep drinking water every day. My girlfriend actually has one where you feed a plant with every cup that you drink! It’s just a nice li’ digital pet that incentivizes you to keep getting your liquids. If you want to fend off those dehydration headaches then please carry a water bottle wherever you go.

Prescription medication

I literally carry my migraine prescription wherever I go. I actually stash a pill in every jacket I own, just in case I experience migraine triggers when I’m out. They're hidden in backpacks, closets, compartments, nooks and crannies; I always am in range of my pain-relieving drugs. Migraine can strike at the most inopportune time, so I always carry it on me no matter what.

Managing my triggers

These things may come naturally to you, but this collection of items has saved me on 14-hour long days on set where my director is telling me to run over and over again in the hot sun. Trust me, migraine loves to strike when I’m sprinting ten times over while wearing some snug costume khakis. I wouldn’t trade this life for anything, so it has been really important for me to find my triggers and either avoid them or handle them with acute accuracy.

Honestly, I should probably get a fanny pack. They’re still cool, right?

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