Migraine

Migraine is a headache disorder characterized by recurrent headache, throbbing pain and pulsation in one side of head. People often name it half headache. One may experience nausea, vomiting, irritation, sensitivity to light etc. The pain may last for an hour to days and the pain is pretty much severe and disturbing. Moreover, some people may experience the warning symptoms, aura during which they feel flashes of light and tingling sensation in limbs.

To handle migraine, medicines are used. Also, some precautionary measures and home based remedies can be effective to relive pain and symptoms.

Signs and symptoms of migraine

  • Throbbing Pain on one side of head
  • Pulsating or throbbing sensation
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blurry vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Irritation and mood swings

Prodrome

One or two days before the migraine attack, people may experience some warning symptoms including food cravings, constipation, and anxiety.

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Aura

This is the stage which some may or may not experience. These are visual disturbance signs due to nervous system problems. People may experience flashes of light, blurry visions, shapes and colors. Also, some may feel ticklish pain and numbness in one side of face and arm. Most of the time, people experience other signs without aura phase.

Post-drome

This is the after phase of migraine in which people feel moodiness, dizziness, sensitivity to light and sound etc.

Causes

Serotonin level in brain helps to lessen pain sensation in headache and migraine. During migraine, serotonin levels decrease in brain. This level drop causes the terminal nerve to release neuropepetides. Transfer of these neuropeptides to the brain layers, meninges cause severe pain migraine. Possibly, genetic factors, age and diseases such as Alzheimer’s are other causes of this disorder.

migraine_triggers

Hormonal changes in women especially during pregnancy, age, quality of food we eat, stress, food additive, alcohol and drugs are major factors which trigger headache. Medications you use for some other disease, irregular sleep-wake pattern are also triggering factors for migraine.

Possible Complications of symptoms

Signs and symptoms may gets severe and complicated if not treated in time. Sometimes, complications happen such as:

Chronic migraine: In this case, pain lasts for more than three months.

Migrainous infarction: aura signs which last for more than an hour are the sign that brain is having less blood supply. The problem with blood supply in brain may be due to some internal injury or stroke.

Status migrainosus: in status migrainous, people may have severe migraine pain which last constantly for more than three days.

Preventive options

Just by avoiding some major triggering factors, complications can be prevented. You should:

Have a healthy lifestyle

Food that we eat and the lifestyle choices are major factor not only for most of the health issues. Therefore, choose a healthy lifestyle. Do exercise regularly; avoid too much caffeinated drinks and alcohol. Skipping meals and not having enough sleep trigger migraine. Thus, it’s wise to avoid these unhealthy habits.

Reduce stress

A stress free life is a healthy life. Try some relaxing routine such as 5-10 meditation which will help you to calm your nerves.

Manage hormonal imbalance

High levels of estrogen or hormonal imbalance is one contributing factor for migraine. For the reasons, avoid taking medicines which contain estrogen or increase estrogen levels in body.

Transcutaneous supraorbital nerve stimulation (t-SNS)

Recently food and drug administration FDA has approved this preventive therapy for migraine. This device is like a head band with electrodes. People using this device have reportedly experienced less severity of pain and less frequent attacks.

Treatment

For treatment, two categories of medications are used:

  • Pain relieving: medicines which help you to relieve pain during migraine attacks.
  • Preventive medicines; which people take on regular basis to reduce the frequent migraine attacks.

Taking pain relieving medicines help to cope with severe pain. These reduce the severity of pain and other symptoms during migraine attack. Some of the pain relieving medicines are:

  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Acetaminophen
  • Tylenol
  • Triptans
  • Ergot

Medicines like these actually block the pathways of neurons which transmit pain signals to brain. Moreover, preventive medicines reduce the frequency of migraine attacks.

Bottom line

Migraine can be handled with medicines and preventive options. If remain untreated, the symptoms may get complicated. Therefore, if your symptoms are severe and if you experience frequent attacks, it’s better to consult a physician in time.

 

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