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How Long Can A Migraine Headache Last

Headaches Or Migraine Attacks That Occur Following Vaccination Can Be Treated As Usual

After getting the vaccine, if a person has a headache, they can take either their regular abortive drug or an over-the-counter medication to help ease any of the symptoms, says Estemalik.

There was initial concern that if you took an over-the-counter medication after your vaccine that it might make it less effective, but there isnt evidence to support that, says Strauss.

Since people can manage any headache that may come on as a side effect of the vaccine with their normal medications, I hope that takes a little of the fear away. This headache might last longer than what youre used to, but you can certainly treat it, she says.

What Else Can I Do To Prevent Migraines

While there are no sure ways to keep from having migraine headaches, here are some things that may help:

Eat regularly and do not skip meals.

  • Keep a regular sleep schedule.
  • Exercise regularly. Aerobic exercise can help reduce tension as well as keep your weight in check. Obesity can contribute to migraines.
  • Keep a migraine journal to help you learn what triggers your migraines and what treatments are most helpful.

How To Shorten Your Migraine Attack

If you recognize the signs that a migraine attack may be coming on, you may be able to reduce the amount of time it lasts, says Spears. Often the person with migraine doesnt always recognize the prodrome phase, but someone close to them a spouse or family member may pick up on it, he says.

Spears offers a few tips to potentially reduce the length of your migraine attack:

  • Aggressively hydrate. Drinking a lot of water is usually helpful.
  • Limit your physical activity. If possible, sit or lie down somewhere.
  • Avoid stimulating environments. Go to a dark, quiet place.

Some people find that relaxation techniques, such as meditation or massage, will help release the tension they feel in their face, jaw, or neck. If you can release tension with these techniques, your migraine attack may not be as severe or last as long. Others find that putting a cold compress on their temples will help relieve their migraine symptoms and keep their migraine from lasting as long, Mauskop says.

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.

How Prevalent Are Migraines

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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:

  • Alcohol

How Long Can A Migraine Last

The Neverending Story

    When you have a , everyminute can seem like an eternity. It would be really great if your brain would wrap up the whole thing ASAP, but migraines can unfortunately last for much longer than they should have any right to do. We had experts explain why this is, plus if theres anything you can do to get rid of your migraines more quickly.

    It could be that there are aberrations how in your brainstem communicates with your trigeminal nerve, an important pain messenger in your body, the Mayo Clinic says. Or maybe some of your brain chemicals that help regulate pain, like serotonin, are out of whack, again looping in that good ol trigeminal nerve to cause discomfort. Scientists still arent sure.

    Although the cause of may be hazy, this much is clear: They can be excruciating, causing a severe throbbing sensation in your head along with issues like nausea, vomiting, and an extreme sensitivity to light and sound. Some people also experience aura, which are sensory disturbances often having to do with your vision, so you might see mirages of wavy lines, flashes of light, and other weirdness.

    While classic migraines cause intense pain, some may only crash into your life with symptoms such as visual changes or intense dizziness. Whether or not your migraines come with pain, common triggers include stress, , hormonal fluctuations, and the .

    This typically lasts for up to 60 minutes, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke .

    Phases Of A Migraine Attack

    Often a migraine attack involves distinct phases, though people can experience them differently, says Roderick Spears, MD, a neurologist and headache specialist at Penn Medicine in Philadelphia.

    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 , 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.

    Who Gets Migraines What Are The Risk Factors

    Its difficult to predict who may get a migraine and who may not, but there are risk factors that may make you more vulnerable. These risk factors include:

    • Genetics: Up to 80% of people who get migraine headaches have a first-degree relative with the disease.
    • Gender. Migraine headaches happen to women more than men, especially women between the ages of 15 and 55. Its likely more common in women because of the influence of .
    • Stress level. You may get migraines more often if youre high-stress. Stress can trigger a migraine.
    • Smoking.

    What Are Some Ways I Can Prevent Migraine

    The best way to prevent migraine is to find out what triggers your attacks and avoid or limit these triggers. Since migraine headaches are more common during times of stress, finding healthy ways to cut down on and cope with stress might help. Talk with your doctor about starting a fitness program or taking a class to learn relaxation skills.

    Talk with your doctor if you need to take your pain-relief medicine more than twice a week. Doing so can lead to rebound headaches. If your doctor has prescribed medicine for you to help prevent migraine, take them exactly as prescribed. Ask what you should do if you miss a dose and how long you should take the medicine. Talk with your doctor if the amount of medicine you are prescribed is not helping your headaches.

    What Are The Symptoms Of Migraines

    The primary symptom of migraine is a headache. Pain is sometimes described as pounding or throbbing. It can begin as a dull ache that develops into pulsing pain that is mild, moderate or severe. If left untreated, your headache pain will become moderate to severe. Pain can shift from one side of your head to the other, or it can affect the front of your head, the back of your head or feel like its affecting your whole head. Some people feel pain around their eye or temple, and sometimes in their face, sinuses, jaw or neck.

    Other symptoms of migraine headaches include:

    • Sensitivity to light, noise and odors.
    • Nausea and vomiting, upset stomach and abdominal pain.
    • Loss of appetite.
    • Feeling very warm or cold .
    • Pale skin color .
    • Euphoric mood.

    What Medicines Help Relieve Migraine Pain

    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.

    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.

    How Long Does It Take For Botox To Work For Migraines

    How long do migraines last?

    When you first start Botox, you usually begin with 2 treatments sessions spaced 12 weeks apart. After your second session, you and your doctor will discuss your Botox treatment and how well it is working for your migraines.

    If you are having a good response to Botox, you will continue your migraine treatment every 12 weeks , or as directed by your doctor.

    On average, Botox prevents 8 to 9 headache or migraine days a month, compared to 6 to 7 days for a placebo treatment. Your results may vary.

    In clinical studies, some patients had migraine results as soon as 4 weeks. If Botox for migraine prevention works for you, you will usually see results after the second injection at 12 weeks.

    • In 6-month long studies, patients continued to see reductions in their number of headache days over the study period.
    • Botox also lowered the total length of time of headaches on days when they occurred over the 6-month study period, when Botox was compared to placebo.

    How Are Migraines Diagnosed

    To diagnose a migraine, your healthcare provider will get a thorough medical history, not just your history of headaches but your familys, too. Also, they’ll want to establish a history of your migraine-related symptoms, likely asking you to:

    • Describe your headache symptoms. How severe are they?
    • Remember when you get them. During your period, for example?
    • Describe the type and location of your pain. Is the pain pounding? Pulsing? Throbbing?
    • Remember if anything makes your headache better or worse.
    • Tell how often you get migraine headaches.
    • Talk about the activities, foods, stressors or the situations that may have brought on the migraine.
    • Discuss what medications you take to relieve the pain and how often you take them.
    • Tell how you felt before, during and after the headache.
    • Remember if anyone in your family gets migraine headaches.

    Your healthcare provider may also order blood tests and imaging tests to make sure there are no other causes for your headache. An may be ordered to rule out seizures.

    I’m Pregnant Can My Migraines Still Be Treated

    Some migraine medicines should not be used when you are pregnant because they can cause birth defects and other problems. This includes over-the-counter medicines, such as aspirin and ibuprofen. Talk with your doctor if migraine is a problem while you are pregnant or if you are planning to become pregnant. Your doctor might suggest a medicine that will help you and that is safe during pregnancy. Home treatment methods, such as doing relaxation exercises and using cold packs, also might help ease your pain. The good news is that for most women migraines improve or stop from about the third month of the pregnancy.

    What Are Headache Disorders

    Headache disorders, characterized by recurrent headache, are among the most common disorders of the nervous system. Headache itself is a painful and disabling feature of a small number of primary headache disorders, namely migraine, tension-type headache, and cluster headache. Headache can also be caused by or occur secondarily to a long list of other conditions, the most common of which is medication-overuse headache.

    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 Symptoms Must You Have To Be Diagnosed With A Migraine

    Migraine with aura . This is a headache, plus:

    • Visual symptoms or vision loss.
    • Sensory symptoms .

    Migraine without aura . A common migraine is a headache and:

    • The attacks included pain on one side of your head.
    • Youve had at least five attacks, each lasting between four and 72 hours.

    Plus, youve experienced at least one of the following:

    • Nausea and/or vomiting.
    • Lights bother you and/or you avoid light.
    • Sounds bother you and/or you avoid sounds.

    What Is A Migraine Headache

    Migraine is a moderate-to-severe headache that lasts from 2 to 48 hours and usually occurs two to four times per month.

    Migraine, also called an acute recurrent headache, occurs in about 3% of children of preschool children, 4% to 11% of elementary school-aged children, and 8% to 15% of high school-aged children. In early childhood and before puberty, migraine is more commonly seen in boys than girls. In adolescence, migraine affects young women more than young men. As adults, women are three times more likely to have a migraine than men.

    Can Migraine Be Worse During Menopause

    If your migraine headaches are closely linked to your menstrual cycle,  may make them less severe. As you get older, the nausea and vomiting may decrease as well. About two-thirds of women with migraines report that their symptoms improve with menopause.

    But for some women, menopause worsens migraine or triggers them to start. It is not clear why this happens. , which is prescribed for some women during menopause, may be linked to migraines during this time. In general, though, the worsening of migraine symptoms goes away once menopause is complete.

    What Should I Do When A Migraine Begins

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    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

    What Are The Symptoms Of Migraine Headaches

      Symptoms are different for different people and are sometimes different from migraine to migraine. The following 5 phases have been noted:

      • Prodrome : Many symptoms can precede a migraine . These include changes in mood or sensation . Many people experience and muscle tension before a migraine .
      • Visual or auditory disturbances : Some people develop scotomas , see geometric patterns, experience hemianopsia , or, less commonly, have auditory hallucinations.
      • : Although migraine pain usually appears on one side of the head, some migraineurs have them on both sides. Throbbing pain may occur. Many migraineurs feel nauseated and may vomit. Many people become photophobic and experience phonophobia . This phase may last 4-72 hours.
      • Headache termination: Even if untreated, the pain usually goes away with .
      • Postdrome: Migraineurs may not feel well for some time after the migraine stops. They might not be able to eat right away. Problems with thinking and tiredness are common.

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      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.

      Are There Different Kinds Of Migraine

      Yes, there are many forms of migraine. The two forms seen most often are migraine with aura and migraine without aura.

      Migraine with aura . With a migraine with aura, a person might have these sensory symptoms 10 to 30 minutes before an attack:

      • Seeing flashing lights, zigzag lines, or blind spots
      • Numbness or tingling in the face or hands
      • Disturbed sense of smell, taste, or touch
      • Feeling mentally “fuzzy”

      Only one in five people who get migraine experience an aura. Women have this form of migraine less often than men.

      Migraine without aura . With this form of migraine, a person does not have an aura but has all the other features of an attack.

      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:

      Home remedies

      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:

      • . 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 . A specialist can teach you how actions and thoughts affect how you sense pain.
      • Supplements. Research has found that some vitamins, , and herbs can prevent or treat migraines. These include riboflavin, coenzyme Q10, and . 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.

      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.

      Learn More About Each Stage Of A Migraine:

      1. Prodrome

      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.

      2. Aura

      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

      3. Attack

      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

      4. Post-drome

      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:

      Headache Or Migraine That Is The Question

      Headaches sometimes tell you about your lifestyle: your life is too hectic, you arent getting enough sleep, you have poor posture at work, or youve had too much alcohol to drink. Often, the headache is talking to you, and you answer by taking a painkiller which, most of the time, makes it go away without further ado. Yet for some, less fortunate people, this pain is a backdrop to their daily lives. In this case, we say they suffer from migraines.

      It is important to distinguish between headaches, technically known as cephalalgia, and migraines. There are several types of headaches. We will start by describing the three most common: tension headaches, cluster headaches, and migraine headaches.

    • Tension headaches:This type of headache may be occasional or chronic. Symptoms are of mild to moderate intensity. Pressure is felt around the forehead and temples; sometimes it is accompanied by neck pain. This type of headache does not cause nausea or vomiting.
    • Cluster headaches:This type of headache may occur from once every two days to eight times a day; it lasts from a few minutes to several hours. The pain is very intense, penetrating but not pulsating, and is located on just one side of the head. The pain may be accompanied by tears, congestion and sweating.
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