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Am I Getting A Migraine

What Medicines Help Relieve Migraine Pain

Talking while having an ocular migraine

For mild to moderate migraines, over-the-counter medicines that may help relieve migraine pain include:

  • aspirin
  • acetaminophen
  • an acetaminophen, aspirin, and caffeine combination
  • ibuprofen
  • naproxen
  • ketoprofen

People who have more severe migraines may need to try abortive prescription medicines. A medicine called ergotamine can be effective alone or combined with other medicines. Dihydroergotamine is related to ergotamine and can be helpful. Other prescription medicines for migraines include sumatriptan, zolmitriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, almotriptan, eletriptan, and frovatriptan.

If the pain wont go away, stronger pain medicine may be needed, such as a narcotic, or medicines that contain a barbiturate . These medicines can be habit-forming and should be used cautiously. Your doctor may prescribe these only if they are needed and only for a short period of time.

How Are Migraines Diagnosed

Your doctor can diagnose migraines by the symptoms you describe. If the diagnosis is not clear, your doctor will perform a physical exam. Your doctor might want to do blood tests or imaging tests, such as an MRI or CAT scan of the brain. These tests can help ensure there are no other causes for the headache. You may also be asked to keep a headache journal. This can help your doctor identify the things that might cause your migraines.

If headache pain is getting in the way of your daily activities, its time to see your family doctor. Read More

What Should I Do When A Migraine Begins

Work with your doctor to come up with a plan for managing your migraines. Keeping a list of home treatment methods that have worked for you in the past also can help. When symptoms begin:

  • If you take migraine medicine, take it right away.
  • Drink fluids, if you don’t have nausea during your migraine.
  • Lie down and rest in a dark, quiet room, if that is practical.

Some people find the following useful:

  • A cold cloth on your head
  • Rubbing or applying pressure to the spot where you feel pain
  • Massage or other relaxation exercises

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Am I Getting Migraines Or Headaches

Hello all,

I really need help trying to figure out if I am suffering from Migraines or headaches.

When I read the symptoms to both of those conditions I have some symptoms from each. Really hope someone can help?

Basically my symptoms are:

Dull achy pain across the whole of the top of my head and it starts to fade once it gets to my forehead. its very painful.

Light and sound exasperate the pain

I feel very tired and drained

Sometimes feel nauseous and hot

It does not go away until I have a full nights sleep

I have no Visually aura symptoms or warnings that it will happen. It just starts with a slight headache pain around the top of my head then gets worse.

I tend to get them during the night, like I will wake up during the night with the headache and fall back to sleep only to wake up with it still there and it lasts until the next night when it goes away after a long sleep.

Sometimes it starts from stress or not eating breakfast. Or if I have dyed my hair.

The pain is like a dull pain but very painful and the fact light and noise make it worse and I feel sometimes hot .and nauseous mean I can not fulfil my daily tasks and have to go to bed in a dark room.

I have had this for about 20 years and I am in my 30s.

Most pain revilers dont work.

Anyone help me figure out if these are migraines or headaches or what type of headaches. I can not be part migraine and part headache, it has to be only one or the other right?

0 likes, 8 replies

Are Migraine Headaches More Common In Women Than Men

Why Am I Getting More Migraines

Yes. About three out of four people who have migraines are women. Migraines are most common in women between the ages of 20 and 45. At this time of life women often have more job, family, and social duties. Women tend to report more painful and longer lasting headaches and more symptoms, such as nausea and vomiting. All these factors make it hard for a woman to fulfill her roles at work and at home when migraine strikes.

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Why Do I Get Ocular Migraines

Migraines are caused by cortical spreading depression, a medical term used to describe abnormal electrical activity in the brain that typically starts in the occipital lobe and spreads through the rest of the brain at a slow but steady pace. Ocular migraines may be caused by this same phenomenon that takes place in the retina of the eye.

What Causes A Migraine

The cause of migraine headaches is complicated and not fully understood. When you have a headache its because specific nerves in your blood vessels send pain signals to your brain. This releases inflammatory substances into the nerves and blood vessels of your head. Its unclear why your nerves do that.

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Whats A Migraine Journal

  • Keeping a migraine journal is not only beneficial to you, but it helps your healthcare provider with the diagnosis process. Your journal should be detailed and updated as much as possible before, during and after a migraine attack. Consider keeping track of the following:
  • The date and time of when the migraine began specifically when the prodrome started, if youre able to tell its happening. Track time passing. When did the aura phase begin? The headache? The postdrome? Do your best to tell what stage youre in and how long it lasts. If theres a pattern, that may help you anticipate what will happen in the future.
  • What are your symptoms? Be specific.
  • Note how many hours of sleep you got the night before it happened and your stress level. Whats causing your stress?
  • Note the weather.
  • Log your food and water intake. Did you eat something that triggered the migraine? Did you miss a meal?
  • Describe the type of pain and rate it on a one to 10 scale with 10 being the worst pain youve ever experienced.
  • Where is the pain located? One side of your head? Your jaw? Your eye?
  • List all of the medications you took. This includes any daily prescriptions, any supplements and any pain medication you took.
  • How did you try to treat your migraine, and did it work? What medicine did you take, at what dosage, at what time?
  • Consider other triggers. Maybe you played basketball in the sunlight? Maybe you watched a movie that had flashing lights? If youre a woman, are you on your period?

What Are The ‘red Flags’ That My Visual Symptoms Are Not Due To Migraine

WHY DOES MY HEAD HURT SO BAD? WHY DO I KEEP GETTING MIGRAINE HEADACHES? HOW TO GET RID OF A HEADACHE

The typical symptoms of a visual migraine are positive, meaning that there is something shimmering or sparkling that is disrupting the vision. Migraines are less likely to cause “negative” symptoms of pure visual darkness. An episode of visual darkness typically requires additional evaluation for other conditions, including a mini-stroke .

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Common Symptoms Of A Migraine

The main symptom of a migraine is usually an intense headache on 1 side of the head.

The pain is usually a moderate or severe throbbing sensation that gets worse when you move and prevents you carrying out normal activities.

In some cases, the pain can occur on both sides of your head and may affect your face or neck.

Migraine Symptoms And Triggers In Children Are Different Than Symptoms And Triggers In Adults And Those Factors Evolve For Individuals As They Age

Every person with migraine experiences different symptoms and triggers, and those factors can change for individuals as they age. Infants and young children might not experience headaches, but they can exhibit signs that theyre likely to develop migraine in the future, said Yulia Orlova, MD, a neurologist and assistant professor at the University of Florida. And teens and adults who have headaches may see their symptoms and triggers change as they grow older.

Orlova discussed how migraine symptoms and triggers can change throughout the years, and how parents can help reduce the frequency, severity and progression of their childrens headache symptoms.

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What Are The Symptoms Of A Migraine

Individual migraines are moderate to severe in intensity, often characterized by a throbbing or pounding feeling. Although they are frequently one-sided, they may occur anywhere on the head, neck and face or all over. At their worst, they are typically associated with sensitivity to light, noise and/or smells. Nausea is one of the most common symptoms and it worsens with activity, which often results in patient disability. In many respects, migraines are much like alcohol-related hangovers.

Migraine pain can be felt in the face, where it may be mistaken for sinus headache or in the neck, where it may be mistaken for arthritis or muscle spasm. Complicating the diagnosis of migraine is that the headaches may be accompanied by other “sinus like” symptoms, including watering eyes, nasal congestion and a sense of facial pressure. Most patients who think they have sinus headache in fact have migraines.

In up to 25 percent of patients, the migraine headache pain may be preceded by an aura, a temporary neurological syndrome that slowly progresses and then typically resolves just as the pain begins. While the most common type of migraine aura involves visual disturbances , many people experience numbness, confusion, trouble speaking, vertigo and other strokelike neurological symptoms. Some patients may experience auras without headaches.

Can Using Birth Control Pills Make My Migraines Worse

Migraine Attacks: So, is it a Migraine?

In some women, birth control pills improve migraine. The pills may help reduce the number of attacks and their attacks may become less severe. But in other women, the pills may worsen their migraines. In still other women, taking birth control pills has no effect on their migraines.

The reason for these different responses is not well understood. For women whose migraines get worse when they take birth control pills, their attacks seem to occur during the last week of the cycle. This is because the last seven pills in most monthly pill packs don’t have hormones they are there to keep you in the habit of taking your birth control daily. Without the hormones, your body’s estrogen levels drop sharply. This may trigger migraine in some women.

Talk with your doctor if you think birth control pills are making your migraines worse. Switching to a pill pack in which all the pills for the entire month contain hormones and using that for three months in a row can improve headaches. Lifestyle changes, such as getting on a regular sleep pattern and eating healthy foods, can help too.

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When To Get Medical Advice

You should see a GP if you have frequent or severe migraine symptoms.

Simple painkillers, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen, can be effective for migraine.

Try not to use the maximum dosage of painkillers on a regular or frequent basis as this could make it harder to treat headaches over time.

You should also make an appointment to see a GP if you have frequent migraines , even if they can be controlled with medicines, as you may benefit from preventative treatment.

You should call 999 for an ambulance immediately if you or someone you’re with experiences:

  • paralysis or weakness in 1 or both arms or 1 side of the face
  • slurred or garbled speech
  • a sudden agonising headache resulting in a severe pain unlike anything experienced before
  • headache along with a high temperature , stiff neck, mental confusion, seizures, double vision and a rash

These symptoms may be a sign of a more serious condition, such as a stroke or meningitis, and should be assessed by a doctor as soon as possible.

There Are Different Types Of Headaches And Treatments

To say, I have a headache, is one thing. To say, I always have headaches, is another. The latter is often more concerning.

Most people get headaches from time to time. They usually go away with or without any treatment. Frequent headaches are much less common and much more serious. They can disrupt your work or personal life. They can also be a sign of an illness or injury.

Unfortunately, many people dont seek help because they think they can cope on their own, says Christy Jackson, MD, a neurologist and director of the Donald J. Dalessio Headache Center at Scripps Clinic. They may rely on over-the-counter pain relievers instead of getting medical help. In some cases, headaches are not properly diagnosed.

Consult with your primary care doctor if your headache symptoms get worse or occur more often despite treatment at home. Your doctor may refer you to a headache specialist.

No one should go through life suffering from chronic headaches, Dr. Jackson says. Not when they are treatable.

Headache specialists

Headache specialists at Scripps help people who suffer from recurring, chronic headaches through a combination of traditional and complementary care with a focus on prevention and lifestyle changes.

We evaluate your symptoms and design a treatment plan that targets the underlying physical, psychological and environmental causes of your headaches, Dr. Jackson says.

Types of headaches

Tension headaches

Migraines

Cluster headaches

Medication overuse headache

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How Can I Tell If I Have A Migraine Or A Sinus Headache

Many people confuse a sinus headache with a migraine because pain and pressure in the sinuses, nasal congestion, and watery eyes often occur with migraine. To find out if your headache is sinus or migraine, ask yourself these questions:

In addition to my sinus symptoms, do I have:

  • Moderate-to-severe headache
  • Nausea
  • Sensitivity to light
  • If you answer yes to two or three of these questions, then most likely you have migraine with sinus symptoms. A true sinus headache is rare and usually occurs due to sinus infection. In a sinus infection, you would also likely have a fever and thick nasal secretions that are yellow, green, or blood-tinged. A sinus headache should go away with treatment of the sinus infection.

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    When an arm goes limp, it can be a sign of a migraine.

    Some people experience muscle weakness on one side of the body before a migraine attack. This can also be a sign of a stroke, however, so consult a doctor to rule out any other causes.

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    What Is Migraine Aura Without Pain

    Migraine aura without pain includes changes in vision or changes in the other senses and speech but no head pain. Symptoms gradually build over 5 to 20 minutes and then go away after about 1 hour. The lack of head pain sets it apart from other types of migraine with aura. Also, no other disorder can be found to be blamed for the symptoms.1

    What Are Rebound Migraines

    Women who use acute pain-relief medicine more than two or three times a week or more than 10 days out of the month can set off a cycle called rebound. As each dose of medicine wears off, the pain comes back, leading the patient to take even more. This overuse causes your medicine to stop helping your pain and actually start causing headaches. Rebound headaches can occur with both over-the-counter and prescription pain-relief medicines. They can also occur whether you take them for headache or for another type of pain. Talk to your doctor if you’re caught in a rebound cycle.

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    Migraine Without Head Pain

    Also called a Silent or Acephalgic Migraine, this type of migraine can be very alarming as you experience dizzying aura and other visual disturbances, nausea, and other phases of migraine, but no head pain. It can be triggered by any of a persons regular triggers, and those who get them are likely to experience other types of migraine, too. The International Headache Society classifies this type as typical aura without headache.

    Why Am I Getting So Many Migraines Lately

    Ways I Know a Migraine Is Coming On

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    What Is A ‘migraine With Aura’

    There are 2 types of migraine: migraine with aura, and without aura.

    It might sound a bit paranormal, but migraine with aura is very real. Some people see flashing lights or a change in their vision some having trouble speaking, and some feel ‘pins and needles’ in their arms and legs. This can happen before or during a migraine attack.

    Even if you get auras, you may not experience one with every migraine. The aura itself usually lasts less than an hour. Scientists aren’t entirely sure why it happens.

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