Migraines; if you’ve never experienced one, count yourself very lucky! Many people can tell you many horror stories about migraines and how they hinder them from fulfilling their every day life. Some people get migraines only on occasion and they are the lucky ones.
Many others suffer from Frequent migraines getting them anywhere from once a week to multiple times a day, EVERY day.
- More than 28 million people in the United States have migraines
- Migraines are most often seen in adults 25 to 55 years old
- Women are nearly 3 times more likely to have migraines than men
- About 50% of migraine sufferers go undiagnosed
ProdromeOne or two days before a migraine, you may notice subtle changes that may signify an oncoming migraine, including:
- Food cravings
- Neck stiffnessAuraAuras are usually visual but can also be sensory, motor or verbal disturbances. Each of these symptoms typically begins gradually, builds up over several minutes, then commonly lasts for 10 to 30 minutes. Examples of aura include:
- Visual phenomena, such as seeing various shapes, bright spots or flashes of light
- Vision loss
- Pins and needles sensations in an arm or leg
- Speech or language problemsLess commonly, an aura may be associated with aphasia or limb weakness (hemiplegic migraine).AttackWhen untreated, a migraine typically lasts from four to 72 hours, but the frequency with which headaches occur varies from person to person. During a migraine, you may experience some of the following symptoms:
- Pain on one side of your head
- Pain that has a pulsating, throbbing quality
- Sensitivity to light, sounds and sometimes smells
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurred vision
- Lightheadedness, sometimes followed by faintingPostdromeThe final phase — known as postdrome — occurs after a migraine attack, when you may feel drained and washed out, though some people report feeling mildly euphoric.
Do not worry! There IS hope!
Although the exact cause of Migraines is unknown (causes varying from genetics to environment factors) Migraines have grown to have many common “triggers” that can be tracked, treated, and sometimes prevented.
- Diet induced
- Sugar induced
- low-blood sugar
- Hormonal Changes in Women
- indoor air quality
- Food–alcohol, aged cheeses; chocolate; aspartame; overuse of caffeine; monosodium glutamate (MSG),
- bright lights or Sun Glare
- toxic fumes
- changes in wake-sleep patterns
- intense physical exertion
- over exercising
- poor nutrition
- over powering smells like Perfume
- Certain Medications-especially oral contraceptives and vasodilators, such as nitroglycerin
- How was your eating the last few days? What did you eat? Did it contain a lot of sugary/high processed/simple carbohydrates?
- How is your stress level?
- Have you been in any locations with fumes, exposure to gas fumes, paint thinner, pollution, etc
- Have you been watching a lot of TV in dark rooms, playing a lot of video games? Been outside in the sun for long hours without Eye protection?
- Have you been pushing yourself physically lately?
- Have you started any new medications recently?