At What Point During A Migraine Attack Does A Person Experience Pain
It varies from person to person and really depends on the duration of the prodrome phase. The prodrome phase can last for up to a day, so in some individuals, migraine pain may begin a day after the onset of the prodrome symptoms. More typically, the headache begins a few hours after the onset of prodrome symptoms.
It is common for migraine headache to resolve or become very mild, but then people are left with residual neck pain and stiffness or generalized soreness in the head and neck as part of the postdrome phase. Soreness after the resolution of headache can last for hours or even days
When Does A Migraine Start To Become Be Dangerous
Migraines are typically benign, or non-life threatening, but this is not the case with status migrainosus. Due to its relentless and never ending nature , status migrainosus has the potential to become and is considered, in most instances, an emergency medical situation. The longer the condition persist, the more serious it can become. Indeed, status migrainosus can be life threatening, inducing conditions such as dehydration, stroke, aneurysm, permanent vision loss, serious dental problems, coma and even death. In the long-term, it can lead to psychological problems such as anxiety and depression, which increases the risk of suicide.
Why Do Migraines Last So Long
There is no telling how long a migraine will last. Fortunately, an individual who understands his or her anatomical migraine triggers is better equipped than others to identify the initial signs of a migraine attack. This individual can then take steps to combat his or her migraine pain before it gets out of hand.
Recommended Reading: Are Migraines And Alzheimer’s Related
Other Types Of Headaches
Doctors have diagnosed hundreds of conditions associated with headaches. Here are just a few:
Medication headaches.;Many drugs number headaches among their side effects. And although it seems paradoxical, many medications used to treat headaches can also cause medication overuse headaches or rebound headaches. Migraine sufferers are particularly vulnerable to a vicious cycle of pain leading to more medication, which triggers more pain. If you have frequent headaches and use medication, OTC or prescription, or both, for more than 10 to 15 days a month, you may have medication overuse headaches. The way to find out is to discontinue or taper your medication but always consult your doctor first. A corticosteroid such as prednisone may help control pain during the withdrawal period.
Sinus headaches.;Acute sinusitis;causes pain over the forehead, around the nose and eyes, over the cheeks, or in the upper teeth. Stooping forward increases the pain. Thick nasal discharge, congestion, and fever pinpoint the problem to the sinuses. When the acute infection resolves, the pain disappears. Sinusitis is not a common cause of chronic or recurrent headaches.
Ice cream headaches.;Some people develop sharp, sudden headache pain when they eat anything cold. The pain is over in less than a minute, even if you keep eating. If you are bothered by ice cream headaches, try eating slowly and warming the cold food at the front of your mouth before you swallow it.
Phases Of A Migraine Attack
Prodrome Phase This first phase of migraine can occur hours to days prior to the attack, says Dr. Spears. It typically involves a change in mood and energy; certain cravings or excessive yawning can be a sign of prodrome, he says.
People sometimes confuse these prodrome, or premonitory, symptoms, with migraine triggers. Thats to say, a person who craves chocolate as a prodrome symptom may mistakenly believe that consuming chocolate triggered the migraine attack, according to MigraineAgain.
Aura About 25 to 35 percent of people with migraine have aura, says Spears. The most common aura is a visual change with a kaleidoscope-like phenomenon that can last anywhere from five minutes to an hour but usually much less than an hour, he says. Other aura symptoms may include tingling sensations, numbness, garbled speech, and clumsiness or weakness.
Headache Phase This stage can last 4 to 72 hours, and in most patients, its marked by a headache on one side of the head thats throbbing and pulsating in quality. Typically, the pain is described as moderate to severe, says Spears.
The headache phase is also associated with becoming sensitive to the environment, he adds. Light, sound, and odor sensitivity are common, as are nausea and vomiting, he says.
Read Also: Are Migraines A Symptom Of Pregnancy
How Prevalent Are Migraines
Migraines are about three times more common in women than men, and may affect more than 12 percent of the U.S. adult population. Migraines often run in families, and can start as early as elementary school but most often in early adulthood. They often fade away later in life, but can strike at any time. The most common cause of recurring, disabling headache pain, migraines are also the most common underlying cause of disabling;chronic, daily headache pain. While migraines are the No. 1 reason that patients see a neurologist, most cases are handled by primary care physicians.
Things that can make the headaches more likely to occur include:
Concussions And Other Head Injuries
If youve recently experienced a concussion or similar head injury, you could be dealing with an ongoing headache. This is called post-concussion syndrome, and its a mild injury to your brain caused by the initial trauma. It can last for months after a concussion possibly up to a year.
Symptoms of post-concussion syndrome include:
- recurrent or ongoing headaches
A variety of treatment options, including home treatments and medical care, can help relieve symptoms of a prolonged headache.
Read Also: How To Fake A Headache
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.
Learn More About Each Stage Of A Migraine:
One or two days before a migraine, you might notice subtle changes that warn of an upcoming migraine, including constipation, mood changes from depression to euphoria, food cravings, neck stiffness, increased thirst and urination or frequent yawning.
For some people, aura might occur before or during migraines. Auras are reversible symptoms of the nervous system. They’re usually visual, but they also can include other disturbances. Each symptom usually begins gradually, builds up over several minutes and lasts 20 minutes to one hour.
Examples of auras 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
- Weakness or numbness in the face, or one side of the body
- Difficulty speaking
- Uncontrollable jerking or other movements
A migraine usually lasts from four to 72 hours if untreated, and the frequency varies by the person. Migraines might occur rarely or strike several times a month.
During a migraine, you might have:
- Pain, usually on one side of your head, but often on both sides
- Pain that throbs or pulses
- Sensitivity to light, sound, and sometimes smell and touch
- Nausea and vomiting
After a migraine attack, you might feel drained, confused and washed out for up to a day. Some people report feeling elated. Sudden head movement might bring on pain again briefly.
Learn more about headaches:
Read Also: Am I Having A Migraine Quiz
Can Migraines Be Prevented Or Avoided
Medicine to prevent migraines may be helpful if your headaches happen more than 2 times a month. You may want to consider this medicine if your headaches make it hard for you to work and function. These medicines are taken every day, whether you have a headache or not.
Preventive medications for migraines can include prescription drugs often used to treat other ailments. Anti-seizure medicines, antidepressants, medicines to lower blood pressure, and even Botox injections are some of the preventive medications your doctor may prescribe. Calcitonin gene-related peptide inhibitors can also help prevent migraines. They do so by blocking a gene-related peptide in your sensory nerves. This peptide is known to increase during a migraine attack, so blocking it can help prevent migraines.
There are also a number of non-medical treatments designed to help minimize migraine pain and frequency. One is an electrical stimulation device, which has been approved by the FDA. It is a headband that you wear once a day for 20 minutes to stimulate the nerve linked to migraines. Another non-medical treatment is counseling aimed at helping you feel in more control of your migraines. This counseling works best when paired with medical prevention of migraines, as well.
What Does The Er Do For A Migraine
The primary role of an ER is to evaluate and treat conditions urgently. If you go to the ER for a migraine and have any unusual symptoms, the ER doctor will likely order brain imaging to rule out a stroke or aneurysm. If you dont have any unusual symptoms, you may not need any diagnostic imaging tests.
Read Also: What Piercing Is For Migraines
Migraine Treatment And Home Remedies
There’s no cure for migraine headaches. But many drugs can treat or even prevent them. Common migraine treatments include:
You may ease migraine symptoms by:
- Resting with your eyes closed in a dark, quiet room
- Putting a cool compress or ice pack on your forehead
- Drinking plenty of liquids
Complementary and alternative treatments
Some people get relief with therapies they use in addition to or instead of traditional medical treatment. These are called complementary or alternative treatments. For migraine, they include:
- Biofeedback. This helps you take note of stressful situations that could trigger symptoms. If the headache begins slowly, biofeedback can stop the attack before it becomes full-blown.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy . A specialist can teach you how actions and thoughts affect how you sense pain.
- Supplements. Research has found that some vitamins, minerals, and herbs can prevent or treat migraines. These include riboflavin, coenzyme Q10, and melatonin. Butterbur may head off migraines, but it can also affect your liver enzymes.
- Body work. Physical treatments like chiropractic, massage, acupressure, acupuncture, and craniosacral therapy might ease headache symptoms.
Talk to your doctor before trying any complementary or alternative treatments.
You Should Not Skip Or Delay The Second Dose Even If You Had Side Effects After The First
Even if you had a bad headache after your first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, you should absolutely not skip or delay the second shot, says Estemalik. The J&J vaccine requires only one dose.
In simple terms, you could think of the first dose as the primer; the second booster dose is what really elevates the antibody production and drives the high efficacy of the vaccines 94 percent for the Moderna vaccine and 95 percent for the Pfizer vaccine, he says.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine doses should be given three weeks apart, and the Moderna vaccine doses four weeks apart, according to the CDC.
Read Also: Does Aspartame Cause Migraine Headaches
How Can I Tell If I Have A Migraine Or Just A Bad Tension
Compared with migraine, tension-type headache is generally less severe and rarely disabling. Compare your symptoms with those in this chart to see what type of headache you might be having.
|Aura before onset of headache||;||x|
Note: Rebound headache may have features of tension and/or migraine headache. Adapted from a table produced by the American Council for Headache Education.
Although fatigue and stress can bring on both tension and migraine headaches, migraines can be triggered by certain foods, changes in the body’s hormone levels, and even changes in the weather.
There also are differences in how types of headaches respond to treatment with medicines. Although some over-the-counter drugs used to treat tension-type headaches sometimes help migraine headaches, the drugs used to treat migraine attacks do not work for tension-type headaches for most people.
You can’t tell the difference between a migraine and a tension-type headache by how often they occur. Both can occur at irregular intervals. Also, in rare cases, both can occur daily or almost daily.
How Can I Prevent Rebound Headaches
The following steps can help stave off rebound headaches.
- Limit the use of any headache medications taken as needed to relieve headache pain to no more than two to three days per a week .
- Contact your doctor if you need to take headache medications more than two days per week.
- Contact your doctor if you have headache more than four days per month. You may need to be on headache preventive medication.
- Avoid using butalbital-containing medications or opioids.
- Control and avoid anything that triggers your headaches. Common triggers include dehydration, hunger, lack of sleep, stress, and certain foods and drinks.
Read Also: Do I Have A Migraine Quiz
How Long Do Migraines Last
If you have ever experienced the pain of migraine, youre familiar with the signs of an attack coming on: intense pain, sensitivity to light or sound, and maybe a little nausea is the cherry on top. These warning signs let you know its coming, but you wonder, how long can a migraine last? When will you be able to resume your normal life?
Botox Injections For Migraine Are Safe Before Or After Covid
There have been reported side effects when it comes to certain cosmetic fillers and the mRNA vaccines, says Estemalik. Some people who have received dermal fillers may develop swelling at or near the site of filler injection following a dose of the vaccine. This appears to be temporary and can resolve with medical treatment, according to the CDC.
Dermal fillers are a different kind of medication from Botox, says Estemalik. This side effect has not been reported in people who have received Botox injections for preventative migraine treatment. It is safe for patients who are getting Botox injections to take the COVID-19 vaccine, he says.
There are no reports of additional side effects or risks for the J&J vaccine in Botox users.
Also Check: Cream Of Tartar Migraines
Does The Duration Of Pain Vary By Types Of Migraine Like Migraine With Aura Or Vestibular Migraine
No, there is no specific correlation between the duration of migraine pain and the types of migraine. Some individuals with aura may have no headache at all. In others, when they do have aura, then they understand the attack is going to be particularly severe and may potentially last longer. There isn’t any general rule that suggests that when you have aura it will change the duration of your headache
Vestibular migraine is a migraine attack that’s associated with symptoms that are believed to involve the vestibular system, like dizziness or vertigo, ringing in the ears, other hearing symptoms, or changes in balance or coordination
Attacks of vestibular migraine are fairly long in duration in terms of the vestibular symptoms, but the headache component of it varies from person to person. One of the confusing things about this particular type of migraine is that the headache component may actually be minor compared to other symptoms.
When To Seek Medical Help
The American Migraine Foundation estimate that less than 50% of people with migraine seek help from a doctor.
If a migraine episode lasts for longer than is typical for an individual, they should seek a doctors advice.
They should visit the emergency room if a migraine episode becomes too severe and at-home treatments do not alleviate symptoms.
An individual should seek immediate medical attention if they have the following :
- an extremely severe headache
- a headache that starts abruptly like a thunderclap, especially if the individual is aged over 50 years
- a migraine headache accompanied with a stiff neck, or fever, confusion, slurred speech, or seizures
- speech, vision, movement, or balance problems that differ from the regular migraine pattern
Always seek medical attention if someone has a headache following a head injury.
Also Check: Does The Daith Piercing Really Help Migraines
What Are The Four Stages Of Migraines
The various four stages of migraines include:
- Prodrome: Also known as the preheadache stage, it precedes a migraine attack. It can last for several hours or several days. During this phase, taking medication, practicing a stress-relieving technique, or avoiding trigger factors can prevent a migraine attack. Some of the common symptoms include:
- Changes in mood
When Can You Safely Go Out In Public
The biggest risk of going out in public after having COVID-19 is transmitting the virus to others. If you follow the guidelines, however you can minimize the dangers.;;
In most instances, contagiousness is negligible after 10 days, but this period may be more prolonged, e.g. two weeks or more, in those with an impaired immune system, says Dr. Bailey. If feasible, prolonging isolation for such people should be considered, perhaps to two or even three weeks, and they should be encouraged to wear a mask when they do venture out in public.
Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. People with mild illness can isolate and recover at home, But if you have symptoms and want to be tested, or if you’ve had close contact with someone with a confirmed case, by all means, find your local testing site.
Also Check: Does A Piercing Help Migraines