Migraine Headaches: What Are They? - Austin Preferred Integrative Medicine

Migraine Headaches: What Are They?

Migraine Headaches: What Are They?

The possibility of a migraine headache can easily become the worst fear of anyone who has ever suffered from one. These debilitating headaches are believed to be caused by changes in the levels of serotonin in the brain. When the levels are too low, this causes the blood vessels to swell, and this swelling causes quite a bit of pain. The level of serotonin that your brain produces is determined by many different things, including foods, light, estrogen, and blood sugar levels.

Those who suffer from migraine headaches know that the pain can become incredibly intense, literally preventing them from going about their day-to-day lives. Different people experience different levels of pain with their migraines – no two are alike.

Symptoms of a migraine headache may include nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, spotty vision, sensitivity to light, sound and smells, intense throbbing pain in various places on your head, feelings of exhaustion, confusion, being too hot or too cold, having a stiff neck and shoulders, dizziness, or feeling light headed.

Many people also report that movement or being touched increases the pain dramatically. Some people suffer from migraines so often that they know when one is about to start – well before it starts. They may experience fatigue, have mood swings, crave certain foods, or they may even experience increased energy that is not ‘normal’ for them.

There are different types of migraine headaches. Classic Migraines are described as migraines that are signaled by changes in the way one sees. Feelings of depression, irritability, and restlessness may signal these migraines. Common Migraines usually start slowly and lasting much longer than Classic Migraines. Classic Migraines and Common Migraines are the two most common types of migraine headaches.

Migraines can be caused by a variety of things, such as excess light, which causes the brain to produce more serotonin than is needed. Certain foods can cause migraines, and this varies from person to person. Unbalanced estrogen levels are another major cause, and more women than men have migraine headaches. Migraine headaches may last anywhere from a few hours up to three days or more.

For some people, over the counter pain relievers will help ease the pain of a migraine. For others, stronger prescriptions pain reliever is required. Again, treatment should be started at the first sign of a migraine in order to cure it faster. Some prescription medications used to treat severe migraine headaches can be habit forming, so caution should be used.

Other than medication, if you are suffering from a migraine, you should resign to a dark room that is very quiet and lie down. If touch doesn’t bother you, massaging your temples may help. Make sure that you apply pressure to the temples, and you should keep your eyes closed and place a cool damp cloth or cold compress either over your eyes or on your head – or both.

Migraines can be avoided in a variety of ways. For frequent headaches, medication may be prescribed to help avoid migraines. Wearing sunglasses, especially those designed for headache sufferers should also be used in bright light. If certain foods tend to bring on your migraines, those foods should of course be avoided. You should also make sure that you get plenty of sleep and that you avoid stress.

Again, migraine headaches can be quite debilitating. Prevention of these headaches is important, and anyone who has had one of these types of headaches will do everything they can do to prevent another one from coming on. Prevention, however, doesn’t always work, so again, make sure you start treating your migraine headache at the very first sign that one is coming for faster relief.

Our center offers an innovative treatment which has been very successful with hundreds of patients. Ask our doctors about our Headache and Migraine Program.

Austin Preferred Editorial Staff

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