5 Mistakes Workers Make When Dealing With a Migraine


Migraines are a serious condition, and they can be debilitating. For people who experience frequent migraines, there is often the added challenge of having to deal with employers and colleagues who don’t understand how severe their condition can be. In this article, we’ll cover five common mistakes that workers make when dealing with a migraine, including:

Your migraine is interfering with work. You can’t focus.

You may be able to do your job, but it will be difficult. For some people, migraine pain is just a distractive nuisance that interferes with concentration. But for others, a migraine can make it impossible to work at all—either they’re so incapacitated by pain and nausea that they have to take time off or they have to stop working because the pain makes their vision blurry or prevents them from seeing well enough to read documents. If you’re having trouble focusing on tasks at work because of your migraines and you feel like you can’t complete them effectively, tell your employer about your condition so that together you can come up with a plan for how best to accommodate it.

Your employer is giving you a hard time about taking a sick day.

If your employer is showing any of these signs, it’s likely that they’re not particularly sympathetic to your migraines. It may also be a sign that the company doesn’t have a clear policy in place for dealing with sick days.

  • Does the employer seem understanding? Do they seem willing to work with you on finding solutions for taking it easy? Or do they make you feel like what you’re asking is unreasonable or even illegal?
  • Is there a clear policy in place for dealing with sick days? Do employees know how many sick days they get per year, and when they can use them?
  • Does the company seem flexible when it comes to taking time off when needed (for example, “I’m sorry but I need this much time off this week”).

You’re not sure when to take a sick day for your migraines.

One of the most important things to remember when dealing with migraines is that it’s okay to take time off from work. You need to pay attention to your body and know when you’re sick enough to stay in bed all day and when it’s safe for you to go into work.

If you think about what happens when you wait too long before taking a sick day, then it makes sense why this is so important:

  • If you wait until your symptoms are really bad, then your migraine will be worse on top of being painful.
  • It may even become hard for anyone else at work who doesn’t get migraines (or has never experienced one) understand how painful they can be sometimes. Your boss might think “Oh well! It looks like they just aren’t feeling well today.” But trust me—if they had a migraine themselves, they would know better than anyone else how much pain goes along with them!

You feel bad about taking a sick day for your migraine.

Migraine is a real medical condition that affects millions of people, not just you. It does not mean that you are weak or lazy or any other negative stereotype. So don’t think twice about taking time off when you need it. You shouldn’t be concerned with what your boss thinks—if anything, she should understand that migraines can cause significant impairment and still function as a normal part of life for those who live with them.

You are not alone in this struggle! Many people have to take sick days due to their migraines because they cannot function normally while experiencing the pain and discomfort associated with their triggers (bright lights, loud noises). When dealing with an episode, try to stay in a dark room as much as possible and avoid any kind of stimulation like TV or music since these things tend to make my headaches worse too!

It’s really hard to take a sick day for your migraines.

  • It’s really hard to take a sick day for your migraines. You might feel like you’re letting your employer down, or like you’ll come across as weak or unreliable.
  • You may be afraid that you’ll lose your job if you take time off work too often.
  • Your boss may not understand why it’s so important that you stay at home when you have migraines—or they may think that there are other ways for you to deal with them.

Workers should know how to ask for what they need.

If an employee is going to ask for time off, the best approach is to have a plan in place. The first step is to know your rights as an employee. In some cases, you may need to call in sick before being able to take time off. In other cases, you may only be able to take time off after having called in sick. You should also research whether or not there are any policies specific to your particular employer that might affect how often and when you can take sick days.

Once you know how much advance notice you will need (and if there are any policies regarding this), it’s important that you prepare yourself mentally and emotionally for how the conversation will go with your manager or HR representative.


We suggest that you keep these tips in mind the next time you have to take a sick day for your migraine. Remember, your employer wants you to be healthy and productive at work—and so do we! If there’s one thing we know about migraines on this blog, it’s that they suck. But with the right support system in place and some knowledge about how to manage them appropriately, we hope this article has helped give you some guidance on how best to manage yours.