28th January 2019

Concern about high numbers of people left isolated because of migraine

90% of people with migraine report that it leaves them feeling isolated

The Migraine Trust is very concerned about the high numbers of people with migraine who are left isolated because of the condition. Many of the people seeking our help report feeling lonely and isolated because of the condition.

We ran a survey to understand the problem further and found that 90% of people with migraine report that it leaves them feeling isolated.

The survey of over one thousand people with migraine also found that 75% of people with migraine avoid agreeing to attend social events because they are concerned that they will get migraine and be unable to attend. Asked how often they missed out on social events because of migraine, 34% said weekly, 41% said monthly, 18% said quarterly, and 5% said annually.

Explaining how migraine affects her social life, one woman with migraine said:

“Most people do not understand how debilitating migraine is, people assume I’m just anti-social and don’t like going out, which is not the case. I choose to remove myself from most social situations because migraine always wins. It leaves me feeling isolated and alone on a weekly basis.”

We are encouraging people with migraine who feel isolated to invite their friends and family to their home for a small gathering as a way to combat their isolation. Emphasising how this can be a low-key event, Wendy Thomas, Chief Executive of The Migraine Trust, says:

“Too often people with migraine decline social invitations because they are concerned that they will get a migraine. This has a huge impact on their life, leaving them feeling lonely and isolated.

“A good way to combat this is to have those that you are close to come to you. They will understand if you have to cancel because you get a migraine.

“You can invite them for tea and biscuits or whatever you like. The main thing is to take that important step in overcoming your isolation.”

We have created a Meet-up pack to support people with migraine in organising social events with their friends and family. People can email fundraising@migrainetrust.org to be sent a pack.