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HomeHealthWhat Do I Take For A Migraine

What Do I Take For A Migraine

Why Do They Occur

Migraine Headaches : How to Cure a Migraine

The cause of migraines remains unclear, however environmental factors and genetics seem to play a role. Other factors that may contribute to migraines are chemical imbalances in the brain, specifically neurotransmitters such as serotonin. Other potential culprits include dehydration, excess stress, loud sounds, smoking, hormonal changes, and severe heat.

What Are The Four Stages Or Phases Of A Migraine Whats The Timeline

The four stages in chronological order are the prodrome , aura, headache and postdrome. About 30% of people experience symptoms before their headache starts.

The phases are:

  • Prodrome: The first stage lasts a few hours, or it can last days. You may or may not experience it as it may not happen every time. Some know it as the preheadache or premonitory phase.
  • Aura: The aura phase can last as long as 60 minutes or as little as five. Most people dont experience an aura, and some have both the aura and the headache at the same time.
  • Headache: About four hours to 72 hours is how long the headache lasts. The word ache doesnt do the pain justice because sometimes its mild, but usually, its described as drilling, throbbing or you may feel the sensation of an icepick in your head. Typically it starts on one side of your head and then spreads to the other side.
  • Postdrome: The postdrome stage goes on for a day or two. Its often called a migraine hangover and 80% of those who have migraines experience it.
  • It can take about eight to 72 hours to go through the four stages.

    Dealing With Nausea And Vomiting

    Migraine attacks may cause a feeling of sickness or cause you to actually be sick . The nausea makes it harder for your body to absorb migraine tablets into your body. If you take painkillers, they may remain in your stomach and not work well if you feel sick. You may even vomit the tablets back. Tips that may help include:

    • Use soluble painkillers. These are absorbed more quickly from your stomach and are likely to work better.
    • As mentioned, one brand of diclofenac comes as a suppository. This may be useful if you usually vomit with a migraine.
    • You can take an anti-sickness medicine in addition to painkillers. A doctor may prescribe one – for example, domperidone, prochlorperazine or metoclopramide.
    • Like painkillers, anti-sickness medicines work best if you take them as soon as possible after symptoms begin.
    • An anti-sickness medicine, domperidone, is available as a suppository if you feel very sick or vomit during migraine attacks.
    • Prochlorperazine comes in a buccal form which dissolves between the gum and cheek. This can be useful if you feel sick and do not wish to swallow a tablet.

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    Looking For More Medicine Information

    healthdirects medicines section allows you to search for medicines by brand name or active ingredient. It provides useful information about medicines such as their use, whether they are available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and product recalls.

    Some Drugs Should Rarely Be Used

    Migraine in Men

    Migraine attacks can last for hoursor even days. They can cause intense pain, nausea, and vomiting. They can make you sensitive to light or noise, and they can affect your life and work.

    To treat migraines, you may get a prescription for an opioid or a barbiturate called butalbital. These are pain medicines. But you should think twice about using these drugs. Heres why:

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    Nonprescription Treatment Options For Migraine

    Emily M. Ambizas, PharmD, MPH, CGPAssociate Clinical ProfessorCollege of Pharmacy & Health SciencesQueens, New YorkClinical Specialist, Rite Aid PharmacyWhitestone, New York

    Alberto H. Ambizas, PharmD, CGPClinical Pharmacy SupervisorNorthport, New York

    US Pharm. 2016 41:31-34.

    Migraine headache is a common, debilitating condition affecting nearly 1 out of 7 Americans annually.1 This condition affects more women than men, and prevalence is highest during peak productive years, between the ages of 25 and 55 years.2 Migraine accounts for the majority of the 5 million headache visits to U.S. emergency departments annually.3 It has a major impact on quality of life more than 90% of migraine sufferers find it difficult to work or function normally during an attack, accounting for more than 150 million missed worked days, with an annual cost to employers exceeding $14 billion.4,5 In addition, migraine headache is ranked as the sixth highest cause of disability worldwide.6

    Pharmacists are in a unique position to help care for patients suffering from migraines. They are often the first healthcare professionals that patients will encounter when seeking relief for their migraine as many as 57% of patients self-medicate with OTC products.7 It is important for pharmacists to understand when and how to use OTC products for the management of migraines as well as when patients require referral to their healthcare provider.

    Home Remedies To Ease A Headache Or Migraine Attack

    Many headache symptoms can be at least partially alleviated without medication. Here are some tips for homemade headache and migraine relief:

    Apply an ice pack to your head and neck. Cold compresses on the head and neck are a common home remedy to ease the pain of a migraine attack. Some people also find it helpful for tension headaches. To avoid skin injury, wrap the ice or cold pack in a cloth and apply it for no more than 15 to 20 minutes at a time.

    Apply heat to the head, neck, or hands and feet. Applying heat may help relieve a tension headache or dull the pain of a migraine attack, according to the Mayo Clinic. Use a heating pad set on low, a hot-water bottle, a warm compress, or a hot towel. A hot bath or shower may also be helpful, or simply run warm water over your hands and feet.

    Have a big glass of water.Dehydration can trigger a migraine attack or lead to a nonmigraine headache, says the National Headache Foundation. Replacing the liquids your body needs may help to relieve the pain.

    Practice a relaxation technique. Meditate, breathe deeply, and try to visualize a peaceful image. “Various relaxation techniques can significantly help patients who suffer from ‘muscle contraction’ headaches,” says Rozental.

    Give yourself a massage. Massage eases muscle tension, and sometimes helps to reduce headache pain, according to the Mayo Clinic. Gently massage your temples, scalp, neck, and shoulders with your fingertips, or gently stretch your neck.

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    Can Chronic Migraine Be Prevented

    Keep a daily headache diary. As soon as you notice an increase in the number of headaches you are having, see your headache specialist. Do not wait until your headaches become a daily occurrence to seek help. It is easier to halt and reverse chronic migraine if caught early.

    Look at the risk factors and modify those you can .

    Triggers That Can Cause Migraines

    How to instantly stop a Migraine!

    Although sometimes migraines can come on without notice and their root causes are still largely unknown, there are numerous triggers that the medical community has noticed can trigger migraines in some individuals. Some of these trigger include:

    • Large hormonal shifts or changes
    • Alcoholic and highly caffeinated drinks
    • Stress or overwhelm
    • Overstimulation of senses loud noises, strong odors, ect.
    • Jetlag or significant changes to your sleep schedule
    • Overexertion or too much strenuous activity
    • Changes in weather and climate
    • Drug use or various medications
    • Certain foods
    • Food preservatives and additives

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    Are Migraine Headaches More Common In Women Than Men

    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.

    Whats The Difference Between Excedrin Extra Strength And Excedrin Migraine

    and Excedrin Migraine contain the same strengths of the same ingredients. However, their labeling is different. Excedrin Extra Strength is used to help relieve minor aches and pains associated with a headache, cold, arthritis, muscle ache, toothache, or premenstrual/menstrual cramps. Adults and children over 12 years old are able to take 2 tablets every 6 hours, with a maximum of 8 tablets in 24 hours.

    Excedrin Migraine, on the other hand, is FDA-approved for migraine relief, and adults 18 years and older are able to take a maximum of 2 tablets in 24 hours.

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    How Do Migraine Headaches Typically Change From First Trimester To Second Trimester To Third Trimester

    âDue to the abrupt hormonal changes and increased blood volume,â says Dr. Crystal, âthe first trimester is often a time of increased headaches for women with migraine.â

    Luckily, they can get better in the second trimester, âthough for some patients the turning point does not occur until around week 20.â

    For some women, migraines can come back near the end of pregnancy, possibly because the discomforts of late pregnancy can impact your sleep.

    Types Of Headache Medication

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    The main medications for headaches are pain-relief medicines. These include paracetamol, aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen. You can also buy medications containing a combination of paracetamol and ibuprofen from a pharmacy. You will need a prescription from a doctor to buy a pain-relief medicine that contains codeine.

    If you have frequent headaches, your doctor may suggest medication to prevent them. This might include a very low dose of an antidepressant . There may be side effects including dry mouth, dizziness, blurred vision, drowsiness, constipation and weight gain.

    If you have migraines, there are particular medicines or combination medicines that can help. These include pain relief medicines, anti-nausea medication and triptans . There are also medications to prevent migraines including beta-blockers and amitriptyline.

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    Migraine With Aura Causes

    Scientists aren’t sure what causes migraine, but several brain chemicals probably play a role.

    According to this theory, a wave of nerve cell activity spreads across your brain and triggers your trigeminal nerve. This causes the release of a variety of neurotransmitters, changing the size of blood vessels, releasing more neurotransmitters, and ultimately causing an inflammatory process and pain.

    Experts think the aura happens because of this electrical wave moving across the part of your brain that processes signals from your senses.

    Migraine often runs in families. It often begins in childhood and gets worse through adolescence. Although more boys than girls have migraine, more adult women than men have them. Over time, you’ll have fewer, and they become less common after age 50.

    Can Painkillers Like Acetylsalicylic Acid Or Acetaminophen Help

    NSAID painkillers have been shown to effectively relieve migraine pain. The most commonly used painkillers in Germany are acetylsalicylic acid , diclofenac, ibuprofen and acetaminophen . Research has shown that these drugs are effective in treating migraine:

    • Without painkillers, migraine pain disappeared within two hours in about 10 out of 100 people.
    • With painkillers, it disappeared within the same time in about 20 out of 100 people.

    In other words, the pain was gone in an extra 10 out of 100 people two hours after taking the medicine. Another 20 out of 100 people can expect some pain relief. The effectiveness of a drug will depend on things like the severity of the migraine and the dose used.

    Effectiveness of painkillers

    Dose taken for a migraine attackMaximum daily dose for adults
    Acetylsalicylic acid
    4,000 mg

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    How To Treat Rebound Headaches

    Frequent use of any acute headache medication, including OTC drugs, can cause what are known as rebound, or medication-overuse, headaches, says Rozental. By definition, a medication-overuse headache occurs on 15 or more days of the month as a consequence of regular overuse of acute or symptomatic headache medication.

    The only way to stop medication-overuse headaches is to stop using the drug thats causing them. However, this process can be uncomfortable and can causing worsening of the headache, among other symptoms, according to The Migraine Trust. If you think you may have medication-overuse headache, speak to your doctor or a neurologist trained in chronic headache management.

    If My Headache Isn’t Going Away Should I Get Tested For Coronavirus

    Headache | Migraine | How To Get Rid Of Headaches

    Headache is one of the symptoms of COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . A February 2020 report of the WHO-China Joint Mission on COVID-19, from early in the pandemic, found that of 55,924 people confirmed to have the disease, 13.6 percent had a headache.

    Theres no treatment for COVID-19, but the same OTC pain relievers that help with other types of headaches may alleviate headaches caused by this disease. does not recommend against the use of ibuprofen for people with COVID-19.)

    If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and want to get tested, the CDC recommends calling your state or local health department or a medical provider. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and are able to recover at home, the CDC notes.

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    Stages Of A Migraine Attack

    It is often difficult to know when a migraine attack is going to happen. However, you can often tell the pattern of each attack as there are well defined stages.

    It is these stages and their symptoms that distinguish a migraine from a headache.

    However, not everyone will experience all of the symptoms of each stage and the stages can overlap. In adults, we can divide a migraine attack into four or five stages that lead on from each other.

    Learning to recognise the different stages of a migraine attack can be useful. You might get one, all, or a combination of these stages, and the combination of stages may vary from attack to attack. Each stage can vary in how long and how bad it is. Recognising different symptoms at different times during your attack can give your doctor information which may help them make a diagnosis. Taking medication as soon as you notice the pain may stop or shorten an attack.

    Migraine attacks in children are often much shorter than in an adult. It may be easier to tell the different headache stages in a child.

    How Does Aspirin Work

    Aspirin works by blocking an enzyme that makes the body produce prostaglandins, which are compounds with many bodily functions, including inflammation and pain processes. By stopping this production process, aspirin can control pain and inflammation.

    People generally use aspirin for mild-to-moderate migraine that does not trigger nausea or vomiting, as vomiting may mean they do not absorb the medication. Those who experience vomiting during migraine episodes may need antiemetics to ensure the body can absorb other medicines.

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    What Foods And Other Things Trigger Migraines

      Many factors have been identified as migraine triggers.

      • Normal hormone fluctuations, which occur with regular menstrual cycles, and some types of oral contraceptives
      • Various foods such as:
      • Moderate or severe pain intensity
      • Aggravation by or causing avoidance of routine physical activity
    • During the headache, at least one of the following characteristics:
    • Nausea and/or vomiting
    • The headache cannot be attributed to another disorder.
    • Imaging the brain with an MRI and CT scans or performing a brain wave test is not necessary if the patient’s physical examination is normal.

      How Should This Medicine Be Used

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      Sumatriptan injection comes as a solution to inject subcutaneously . It is usually used at the first sign of a migraine headache. If your symptoms improve after you use sumatriptan but return after 1 hour or longer, you may use a second dose of sumatriptan. However, if your symptoms do not improve after you use sumatriptan, do not use a second injection without talking to your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Use sumatriptan exactly as directed. Do not use more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

      Sumatriptan injection comes in a pre-filled auto-injection device and in vials to be used with disposable syringes. If you are using vials of sumatriptan injection, your doctor or pharmacist will tell you what type of syringe you should use. Do not use any other type of syringe because you may not get the right amount of medication.

      You can inject your sumatriptan in the outer side of your thigh or upper arm. Do not inject sumatriptan through clothing. Never inject sumatriptan into a vein or muscle.

      You may use your first dose of sumatriptan injection in a doctor’s office or other medical facility where you can be monitored for serious reactions. Carefully read the instructions that come with your device, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to show you how to use it.

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      What Is The Prognosis For People With Migraines

      Migraines are unique to each individual. Likewise, how migraines are managed is also unique. The best outcomes are usually achieved by learning and avoiding personal migraine triggers, managing symptoms, practicing preventive methods, following the advice of your healthcare provider and reporting any significant changes as soon as they occur.

      What Tests Are Used To Find Out If I Have Migraine

      If you think you get migraine headaches, talk with your doctor. Before your appointment, write down:

    • How often you have headaches
    • Where the pain is
    • How long the headaches last
    • When the headaches happen, such as during your period
    • Other symptoms, such as nausea or blind spots
    • Any family history of migraine
    • All the medicines that you are taking for all your medical problems, even the over-the-counter medicines
    • All the medicines you have taken in the past that you can recall and, if possible, the doses you took and any side effects you had
    • Your doctor may also do an exam and ask more questions about your health history. This could include past head injury and sinus or dental problems. Your doctor may be able to diagnose migraine just from the information you provide.

      You may get a blood test or other tests, such as CT scan or MRI, if your doctor thinks that something else is causing your headaches. Work with your doctor to decide on the best tests for you.

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