Migraine is a neurological disorder that can cause several symptoms. Intense, debilitating headaches generally characterize it. The symptoms can also include nausea, vomiting, numbness or tingling, increased sensitivity to light, and sensitivity. It can run between families and happen to people of all age groups.
Read the full blog and learn about the symptoms, types, diagnosis, and treatment of migraine.
What Are The Symptoms of Migraine?
A migraine that starts in childhood, adolescence, or young adulthood may advance through the four stages listed below:
Not everyone’s condition of migraine goes through all four stages. Let us now discuss the symptoms people commonly experience in these stages:
Prodrome (Early Warning)
30% of migraine sufferers face Prodrome phase symptoms. It is a warning sign of an impending attack and can start anytime, ranging from a few hours to a few days before the attack.
- Mood changes
- Food cravings
- Frequent yawning
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Muscle stiffness
- Inability to concentrate
- Increased sensitivity to sound or light
- Poor sleep quality
- Trouble speaking and reading
Nearly 25% of the total cases go through this phase. Unfortunately, it happens an hour before the headache strikes.
Aura occurs when there is an electrochemical reaction in the brain.
- Visual disturbances
- Temporary vision loss
- Numbness or tingling sensation on body parts
Attack Phase (during headache)
A attack is very exhausting that typically starts at one part of the brain. However, with time, the site of the pain may move to other parts of the brain.
Different people experience different types of pain in this phase –
- Ice pick in the head
The intensity of the pain may increase through day-to-day activities and other concrete activities. The duration of the pain can last up to 72 hours for this phase.
- Increased sensitivity to smell
- Sensitivity to light and sound
- Neck pain
- Muscle stiffness
Postdrome (after headache)
This phase is called “migraine hangover.” Some sufferers take time to recover from intense headaches. You can take pain relievers prescribed by your doctor to get relief from the pain for this phase.
- Mental confusion
- Lack of understanding
What are the Types of Migraine Headaches?
The two prominent types of migraine headaches include:
Migraine Without Aura:
This type is called “common migraine,” and it is one of the most common type. It accounts for about 75% of the overall cases.
People experience throbbing pain in one part of the head. The severity of the pain ranges from moderate to severe, and routine physical activities can significantly increase the pain.
Symptoms may include nausea and vomiting. You may even feel challenged to withstand intense light and sound.
It doesn’t start with aura, and the symptoms can last from 4 to 72 hours.
2. Migraine With Aura:
Also called “classic migraine.” You may start feeling strange and get an indication of the impending headache.
You get a ringing sound in your ears, feel dizzy or see bright and flashy light. About one-quarter of the cases with aura can hurt a lot. However, the condition is not life-threatening. Certain medications and treatments are available for its treatment.
Some other types of migraine also exist, which are listed below:
- Migraine Equivalent: If you ever had a migraine at your younger age, you can get stuck with this type when you get old(after 50 years). It is similar to a migraine with aura, except that a headache does not succeed.
- Complicated Migraine: The symptoms of the complicated migraine last until you experience the headache and go after that. The common symptoms of this include temporary loss of vision, difficulty in speaking and comprehending things, tingling, numbness, etc.
- Menstrual Migraine: Several women get a migraine before, during, or after their menstrual cycle. They usually experience symptoms similar to that of classic migraines.
- Abdominal migraine: children are generally more susceptible to this type of migraine. They don’t experience throbbing headaches. Instead, get a sensation of nausea and vomiting.
What cause a migraine?
Low blood sugar level
HRT(Hormone Replacement Therapy) medications
How Is Migraine Diagnosed?
The doctor utilizes radio waves and a strong magnetic field to produce comprehensive pictures of blood vessels and the brain. With an MRI, doctors can detect –
- Internal bleeding
- Other brain and neurological disorders
2. CT Scan:
A CT scan produces cross-sectional pictures of different brain parts by using successive x-rays. With this test, the doctors can detect –
- Brain damage
- Internal bleeding
- Other medical emergencies
What Medications Treat Migraine?
The migraine treatment can help relieve the symptoms and avoid the risk of a future attack.
There are two broad categories of medications available:
- Preventive Medications: These medications can reduce the pain and frequency of migraines when taken regularly.
- Pain-relieving Medications: These medications relieve the symptoms during a migraine attack.
Let us now have a brief discussion on the above-listed categories of medications:
Antidepressants can help prevent the risk of migraines. Example: Amitriptyline, Aripiprazole (Arijoy 5mg)
- Weight gain
2. Blood Pressure Lowering Medicines
- Beta-Blockers – It makes your heartbeat slower by blocking some of the hormones. Examples: Propranolol, Metoprolol.
- Calcium Channel Blockers: It blocks calcium away from your heart and blood vessels. It also helps blood vessels widen and relax as per the requirement. Example: Verapamil.
- ACE Inhibitors: It can reduce the frequency of headaches. Examples: Lisinopril, Candesartan.
- Weight gain
3. Anti-seizure medicines
It can decrease the frequency of headaches. Example: Topiramate, Valproate
- Weight changes
4. Botox Injections
Adults need to take Botox(onabotulinumtoxinA) injection once every 12 weeks to prevent migraines.
- Blurred vision
- Muscle stiffness and weakness
- Trouble swallowing
5. CGRP Monoclonal Antibodies
These drugs are FDA(Food and Drug Administration) approved and are given once every month to prevent migraines.
- Reaction on the site of injection
- Pain Relievers
- Bleeding and ulcers of the gastrointestinal tract
- Over-exploitation of medicines
Narcotic opioid medications containing codeine
3. Anti-nausea Drugs
Anti – nausea drugs such as chlorpromazine, Prochlorperazine and Metoclopramide can help with migraines.
- Mood swings
Such as Sumatriptan and Rizatriptan.
- Chest pain
- Tingling of the skin
Answering Your Questions
What migraine feels like?
It is a headache that usually affects one side of the head and causes extreme throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation. It’s commonly accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and excessive light and sound sensitivity.
Is migraine curable?
There is presently no cure, however there are several therapies that can help alleviate the symptoms. It may take some time to figure out what treatment is best for you. It’s possible that you’ll have to test a variety of medications or combinations of medications before you find the most effective ones.
Can you sleep off a migraine?
Sleep has been highlighted as a typical relief method for some – in fact, nearly 90% of migraineurs in a study of 75 reported trying to sleep to relieve their pain.
Can migraine be serious?
These headaches are unlikely to result in death or permanent brain damage. It may, on the other hand, may raise the risk of cardiovascular events and stroke in patients.
Does crying help migraines?
Not really, crying can trigger a migraine in some people, especially those who are predisposed to them.
How long can migraines last?
If left untreated, it can persist anywhere from 4 to 72 hours. The frequency with which it strike varies from person to person. Migraines can hit once a month or numerous times a month.
What foods trigger migraines?
Some of the common triggers are as follow:
- Dairy products such as yorgut
- Citrus fruits, dried fruits, bananas, raspberries, red plums, papayas, passion fruit, figs, dates, and avocados.
- Yeast based breads and delicacies.
How can I prevent migraines naturally?
Some of the things you can add in your everyday to prevent migrain are :
- Diet chnages
- Stress managment
- Essential oils.
Is coffee good for migraine?
Caffeine can help with any type of headache, including tension headaches and migraines. That’s why it’s found in so many over-the-counter pain medications. It has the potential to increase their effectiveness by up to 40%. Caffeine alone can sometimes be enough to stop the pain in its tracks.
Can migraine cause brain tumor?
Despite the fact that headaches are a common indication of a brain tumour, only a small percentage of headaches suggest cancer.
Can migraines cause brain damage?
They are excruciatingly painful. You’ve probably wondered if they have a long-term effect on your brain if you acquire them. According to research, the answer is yes. They can result in lesions, which are areas of brain damage.
How do you tell the difference between a migraine and a headache?
Headaches are pains in the head, face, or upper neck that can vary in intensity and frequency. Migraines are a type of primary headache condition that causes excruciating pain. They are characterised by more severe and debilitating symptoms than headaches. However, some may not result in head pain.
Why do migraines get worse at night?
Stress, tense muscles, and exhaustion can all cause tension headaches that worsen migraine. Tension headaches can occur at night as a result of tension that has built up during the day.
Why do I wake up in the middle of the night with a migraine?
Dehydration, poor sleep hygiene, interrupted sleep, and medication withdrawal could all be contributing factors to your episode when you wakeup. These attacks may be reduced by sleeping 8 to 10 hours per night, drinking enough of water, and avoiding excessive alcohol intake.
Can migraines be caused by stress?
Yes, not only does stress cause migraines, but it can also prevent you from sleeping, which can give birth to this condition.