A migraine is characterised by sharp, throbbing pain on one side of the head. It is frequently accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and excessive light and sound sensitivity.
Most migraine sufferers get episodic headaches, which last for a few hours and occur once or twice a month at most. Chronic migraine affects 2% of the world’s population and causes headaches at least 15 days a month, with episodes lasting longer. This makes leading a regular life quite difficult.
What Causes Migraines?
Each migraine sufferer has unique triggers, so it will be good to track activities and occurrences during a migraine episode to assist you in identifying your triggers. You can evade them and lessen the frequency of assaults that occur over time.
Typical migraine triggers include:
- Sleep deprivation
- Hormone fluctuations throughout the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, and menopause
- Meal skipping
- Pills for birth control
- Temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure variations
When should I go to the doctor?
If you exhibit any of the following signs, you should see your doctor:
- The first time you get a migraine.
- Migraines with increased intensity or frequency.
- The assault is intense and strikes quickly, like a “crack of thunder.”
Your doctor may also prescribe additional testing based on the findings.
How will I be treated for my migraine?
Once you’ve been diagnosed with migraine, your doctor might recommend treatments to alleviate symptoms and prevent future episodes. These are divided into two major categories:
- Medication used to relieve pain and halt symptoms after an attack has begun.
- Preventive medicines are typically provided for chronic migraine patients and administered on a regular basis to lessen the intensity or frequency of episodes. These might include:
- Antidepressants and anti-seizure medicines
- Injections of Botox
- Erenumab is a novel medicine that inhibits the function of CGRP, a chemical implicated in migraines.
Should I visit a specialist?
If your primary care doctor’s drugs don’t adequately control your symptoms, you may be sent to one of the following specialists. This will depend on the sort of symptoms you have:
- A neurologist specialising in the treatment of headaches, including migraines.
- If you encounter momentary blindness during your migraine episodes, consult an ophthalmologist.
- See a psychologist or psychiatrist if your migraines are primarily caused by stress.
- See an “ear, nose, and throat” (ENT) specialist if you have sinus issues.
- See an obstetrician/gynecologist (OB/GYN) for hormonal changes.
If you have access to a pain-management specialist/migraine clinic and your migraines are severe, you can see all of the aforementioned experts in one place.
Migraines are frequently misdiagnosed and mistreated. Keep a record of your migraine episodes and how you handled them if you have them regularly. Be sure to schedule a consultation with your doctor to address your headaches.