Your Child's Doctor Visit

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last review date: November 2010 | Last updated: May 2020

If a young person has a migraine that keep returning, it may be time to see a doctor. It is important to find a doctor that is a childhood migraine specialist. If you’re having trouble finding one, ask a local neurologist to help you find a migraine specialist.

Doctors will ask:

  • How often do migraines occur?
  • What other symptoms does the child have?
  • Have any migraine triggers or causes have been identified?
  • Has the child suffered any head injuries?
  • Did anything about the child’s routine change before the migraine pain began?
  • Is the child taking any medications?
  • When did the migraine symptoms first begin?
  • What makes the symptoms improve?
  • What makes the symptoms worse?
  • Does anyone else in the immediate family suffer from migraines?

Therefore you should take a migraine journal to the appointment The journal should describe past migraines, how long they last and what the child was doing immediately before the migraine symptoms began.

Also, let children or teens know what to expect of the doctor’s appointment. Most doctors exclude any other cause of the pain before they diagnose migraines.

The doctor may:

  • Take blood samples
  • Measure blood pressure
  • Ask you to record information about the migraine pain in a journal
  • Suggest changes in lifestyle to reduce migraine pain, such as getting eight hours of sleep, avoiding caffeine, reducing stress, exercising regularly etc.
  • Teach relaxation techniques
  • Order brain imaging tests, such as a CAT scan or MRI to rule out any other cause of the pain
  • Suggest trying over-the-counter pain relievers
  • If nothing else works, prescribe medications to prevent the migraine attacks from happening as frequently or to make them less severe

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