Impact of Migraine Headaches in the Workplace

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Anyone who has ever suffered from a migraine headache knows that they can be debilitating. Oftentimes, the only thing a person can do to get any relief is to sleep it off. Unfortunately, migraine headaches are quite common. In fact, Fujitsu Corp. discovered that close to one in five of the 2,400 employees surveyed revealed that they suffer from migraine headaches, which cost the company an estimated $350 million per year. To help employees who suffer from migraines, Fujitsu is participating in a workplace initiative developed by the International Headache Society’s Global Patient Advocacy Coalition (IHS-GPAC). The program helps advocacy groups, employers, and employees address migraines in the workplace and provide the best care available.

According to the chair of the IHS-GPAC, employers who do not address migraines in the workplace run the risk of losing approximately $2,000 per employee each year. However, there is a general lack of understanding and awareness about migraine headaches. They are often undiagnosed, misdiagnosed, and under-treated. By participating in the workplace initiative, Fujitsu is taking proactive steps to address the issue head-on and help reduce the stigma of migraines in the workplace.

Answers to Common Migraine-Related Questions

  • How does a migraine impact an employee’s ability to do their job? In addition to the severe headache, migraine sufferers often feel nauseous, experience visual disturbances, and have a sensitivity to bright light. Regular migraine sufferers often feel stress and anxiety associated with anticipating the next headache. They must also deal with the stigma that comes with the fact that migraines are often misunderstood. It is difficult for people to get through the workday when a migraine sets in.
  • Are employers less likely to hire someone who suffers from migraines? Like any other employee who has a chronic health condition, migraine sufferers are employable. Employers may need to make accommodations, but when employees understand that their employer is willing to be flexible, they are more likely to be productive when they are headache-free.
  • What can employers do to support workers who suffer from migraines? When employers are flexible, open-minded, and willing to make accommodations, migraine sufferers are less likely to be absent from work.
  • What are specific employee benefits that can help employees with migraines? Making flex-time available for people with migraines is extremely helpful, particularly for those who suffer from light sensitivity. Other steps include eliminating scented products and adjusting the lighting in break rooms.
  • How can employers and employees work together to make the workplace more friendly for migraine sufferers? Raise awareness of the issue and provide an effective roadmap for strategies to create a workplace that supports migraine sufferers. Employees can discuss their experiences with migraines to help reduce the stigma.

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for Victims of Migraines

If you suffer from migraine headaches at work and your employer is unwilling to make accommodations, contact the Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton as soon as possible. We will ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the full financial benefits you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us online. Located in Baltimore, we serve clients throughout Maryland.