- 11 August 2019
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What Exactly Brings Migraine Headache Into Your Busy Schedule
Are you experiencing headaches which are becoming more frequent and more intense?
Are you confused of information available on the Internet or from people around you making it hard for you to differentiate common headache from Migraine Headache?
Then, This Blog is for you!
More than half of all migraine sufferers have never been diagnosed; they are mistaken for common headaches. Migraines are three times more common in women than in men. Crazy! Right?
Take a few minutes to go through this blog to learn about migraines, so you can have a general understanding which might help you to differentiate common headaches from migraine headache and thereby seek appropriate treatment. This blog is going to provide you information about migraine, causes, signs and symptoms, and treatment options available for treating migraine, especially at Sunshine Hospital Hyderabad.
What is Migraine?
A migraine is an intense form of headache that feels like severe throbbing pain or a quivering sensation, usually occurs on one side of the head. Migraine is commonly associated with vomiting, nausea, and extreme sensitivity to sound and light. Migraine attacks may last from a couple of hours to days. The pain experienced with migraine is so intense that it could interfere with an individual’s daily life.
What Can Trigger a Migraine Headache?
The exact cause of migraine is relatively unknown, although most people with migraines have a genetic predisposition. However, there are a few common triggers that could bring about a migraine headache, and these triggers are:
- Imbalances in the brain chemicals
- Environmental factors causing allergens
- Changes in the brainstem and its interactions with the trigeminal nerve
- Sleep (Too less sleep, staying late at night, sleeping in the mornings, etc.)
- Changes in weather
- Genetics inherited
- Preservative foods
- During menstruation
- Feeling overtired
- Skipping meals
- Emotional triggers
- Certain Medications
Signs and symptoms of Migraine
There are several signs and symptoms brought about by migraine headache, and during a migraine attack, you tend to experience a mix of migraine symptoms. A migraine headache often begins as a dull pain and grows into throbbing pain. Physical activity usually makes it worse. Pain can move from one side of the head to the other or feels like it affects the entire head.
Signs and symptoms associated with migraine are:
- Sensitivity to light, noise, and smell
- Feeling very warm or cold
- Pale skin
- Loss of appetite
- Blurred vision
- Nausea and vomiting
- Upset stomach with belly pain
- Fever (in rare cases)
Most migraines last about 4 hours; however, in severe cases of migraine, a headache may last for more than three days. The periodicity of the migraine episode varies from individual to individual; for example, some people may experience migraine every few days, while others suffer from migraines once or twice a year.
Types of Migraine
There are various types of migraines. In 1988, the International Headache Association developed a classification system for migraine headaches, which was approved by the World Health Organization. This System provides different names for various types of migraine headaches that cause different symptoms. This classification helps doctors to diagnose and treat accordingly.
The most common types of migraines are:
- Migraine with aura
- Migraine without aura
Migraine with Aura
An Aura is a non-physical energy field said to be present around a human being. Some people may experience an aura before or during a migraine. MIgraine with Aura usually involves visualizing shapes/bright spots, etc., but may also include other disturbances. Each symptom usually starts gradually, increases in a few minutes and lasts 20 to 60 minutes.
Visual auras include:
- Vision loss
- Difficulty speaking
- Weakness and numbness in the face
- Bright flashing of dots or lights
- Blurry vision
- Temporary vision loss
Other auras can affect your other senses, and you cannot describe those feelings. You can also have a ringing sound in your ears or change in smell, taste, or touch.
This kind of a migraine is rare, and is further classified as follows:
Hemiplegic migraine: Rare condition and a severe one, involves temporary weakness on one side of the body
Ocular migraines: It is caused by a decrease in blood flow or spasms of blood vessels in the retina or behind the eyes. Short-term loss of vision either partially or entirely in one eye, along with dull eye pain that can spread throughout your head. In case of vision problems, it is recommended to consult a doctor immediately.
Migraine with brainstem aura: Unusual and rare type of migraine, also known as Basilar type migraine
Status migrainosus: This is a rare and severe type of migraine, can last more than 72 hours. Pain and nausea are so severe that you may need to go to the hospital. Sometimes, this type of migraine can be caused by a medication or drug withdrawal.
Ophthalmoplegic migraine: this type of migraine Causes pain in the eye area, and paralysis of the muscles around the eye. This condition warrants urgent medical help because the symptoms can also be caused by pressure on the nerves behind the eyes or aneurysms. Some of the Other symptoms of this rare type of migraine include droopy eyelids, double vision, or other visual changes.
Migraine Headaches Without Auras:
70% to 90% of people with migraine experience this type of migraine. These are more common than Migraine Headache with Aura. During this type of migraine, you may feel pain, vomiting, or diarrhea. A few hours before the onset of headaches, you may experience the following symptoms:
- Feeling very tired
If you suffer from migraine headache caused due to a familial history of migraine or migraine headaches, a neurologist may diagnose migraines based on your medical history, symptoms, and physical and neurological examinations. If your condition is unusual, complicated, or sudden severe, testing to rule out other causes of your pain may include:
- A CT Scan
- An MRI
There is no cure for migraine, but there are drugs which are used to subside the effects of migraine or even prevent from recurrence. The occurrence of migraine headaches can be brought down by avoiding triggers. Types of migraine treatments available are:
- Acute medicines
- Pain relief
- Nausea medicine
- Blood pressure-lowering medications
- Anti-seizure drugs
- Botox injections
- Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) monoclonal antibodies
When Should You Contact a Migraine Doctor?
We, at Sunshine Hospitals, have a panel of able and experienced Neurologist to evaluate and treat patients suffering from migraine headaches. So, please contact us if you have the following signs or symptoms:
- If you have a change in the frequency, the severity of migraines
- New and progressive headaches lasting several days
- Symptoms of migraines that last for more than 72 hours
- Headaches are caused by coughing, sneezing, or other physical tension
- Significant unintentional weight loss
- Weakness or paralysis that continues after a headache
- Headaches are related to head trauma or unconsciousness
- Numbness in the neck
- Reduced awareness or confusion
- Paralysis on one side of the body
As discussed at length in the blog, migraines have no known cause and are symptomatic in nature. Migraines have a specific set of signs and symptoms and trigger points. The problem with migraine is that they could easily pass for a common headache, and hence, many people do not pay necessary attention to the condition. In most cases of migraine headaches, patients approach doctors after Experiencing severe bouts of migraine headaches.
In today’s times, the unhealthy changes we brought about in our lifestyle is predisposing us to fall prey to migraine headaches. That includes but not limited to several hours of viewing mobile/computer/laptop screen without a break, staying up late nights, not having adequate and restful sleep, and allowing stress from jobs eating up our personal life/space, etc.
Hence, we recommended to consult a doctor as soon as you sense the headache symptoms experienced by you maybe, just maybe, related to migraine. Feel free to get in touch with our Neurologists to get your queries, if any, answered about Migraine Headaches. Please pick up your phone and call us at 040 44550000
About Sunshine Hospitals:
A Multi Super Speciality Institution, 500 bedded Sunshine Hospitals (Paradise Circle, Secunderabad) is promoted by globally reputed Joint Replacement Surgeon Dr AV Gurava Reddy (Orthopedic Doctor) and like-minded associates who share the objective of making world-standard healthcare available, affordable and accessible to the common man. Sunshine has now become one of the best hospitals for many treatments including Orthopedic, Gastroenterology, Cardiology, Trauma and Neurology.