Headache/Migraine

Migraine is a specific type of headache that occurs due to certain changes within the brain. Migraine pain is a pounding pain experienced in a specific part of the head, and is often accompanied by sensitivity to sound, smell or light. Some of the major Migraine symptoms include nausea, vomiting and eye pain. Some patients experience Migraine with very specific conditions that can be referred to as an Aura. For example, the patient might feel weakness / numbness in one side of the body and a flashing light or blind spot in left or right eye based on which side you have the pain in. People who are not aware of the Migraine symptoms might consider a Migraine pain as Stroke the very first time they experience it.
The exact cause of Migraine is not known but it involves the contraction of the muscles of neck, scalp and face. Researches have shown that the changes in neurotransmitter level in brain play an important role in triggering this severe pain. There are some clinical signs and symptoms including stress, hormonal changes, reaction to various food items, response / sensitivity to loud sounds and exposure to light.

MIGRAINE RELIEF DRUGS

Mostly patients suffering from Migraine are prescribed with drugs for Migraine relief such as Zolmitriptan, Amerge, Almotriptan and Frovatriptan. Patients suffering from Migraine use these medicines for years and still complain of pain.

MIGRAINE REMEDIES AND THERAPIES

There are several Migraine remedies that really help. First of all doctors recommend changes in lifestyle such as following an exercise/ workout routine, eating healthy and balanced diet, avoiding foods that trigger Migraine pain or enhance the intensity. Migraine patients are also suggested to do Yoga as that helps in relaxing the muscles and nerves, even during a severe pain attack. Some other therapies include applying ice on the head, satisfactory sleep for at least 6 to 8 hours, smoking termination, and avoiding any type of stress from the environment such as flashing lights and loud music.

MIGRAINE TRIGGERS

There are several factors that lead to triggering the pain; some of the known triggers are listed below
– Hormonal fluctuations that occur with the monthly menstrual cycles produce Migraine headaches in a large number of females.
– At times there are certain steroids / hormones that are taken orally such as contraceptives (birth control pills) that can trigger migraines as a side effect.
– There are several food items that can become serious Migraine causes such as Alcohol, Aged cheeses, chemicals / preservatives used in smoked meat products, artificial sweeteners, various dairy products and chocolates.
– As much as we need adequate sleep, we must avoid oversleeping as it can become a trigger point for chronic Migraine.
– Stress in any case is very harmful; you need to find a relaxing activity that helps you sabotage stress somehow.
– Avoid going to parties with loud music or places where you are exposed to loud sound and flashing lights.

Most often Migraine patients are unaware of their trigger points as a result of which they continue doing things or consuming food items that can trigger the pain. It would be best to maintain some kind of log to keep track of your body’s reaction to various things to be able to handle your pain better.

TYPES OF MIGRAINE

There are two major types of Migraine pain but there are a few less common type of pains, as explained below:

Common Migraine (without Aura)

This is the most common or frequently occurring Migraine with symptoms including pulsating pain without warning on one side of the head. This pain is accompanied by fatigue, nausea, blurred vision, confusion and enhanced sensitivity to light, sound and smells. Severe pain attacks occur somewhere between 4 hours to 72 hours unless a Migraine remedy is used to handle the pain immediately. These Migraine attacks can occur frequently from few times a week to a few times in a year. Patients suffering from this type of Migraine are prone to getting the pain more frequently in case they take symptomatic medication.

Migraine with Aura

This is a complicated type of Migraine that includes neurological symptoms and visual disturbances that start appear about 20 to 60 minutes before the headache. These symptoms have been reported to end within an hour. A lot of people have reported temporary loss of vision while suffering from chronic Migraine pain. The aura can also occur without any headache at any time. Some other symptoms include numbness, muscle weakness on one side of the body, abnormal sensation, sometimes a tingling sensation in the face or hands. Patients might also experience trouble in speaking with nausea and loss of appetite. Such Migraines are also referred to as Tension headaches.

Migraine without headache

During Migraine without headache a patient might have fever, dizziness and an unexpected / unexplained pain in any specific part of the body. This one is also called Typical Aura without headache.

Migraine with Brainstem Aura

This type of pain primarily affects adolescents and children; it is quite similar to Migraine with Aura symptoms that originate from the brainstem, but without motor weakness. It is usually reported to occur in teenage girls and can have a connection with their early menstrual cycles. Symptoms include partial or total loss of vision, loss of balance (vertigo), weak muscles, slurred speech, and dizziness, a ringing in the ears (tinnitus), and unconsciousness at times. There is a throbbing pain felt on both sides or at the back of the head.

Hemiplegic Migraine

This is the type of Migraine that occurs rarely but has a greater intensity and can lead to Migraine that causes temporary paralysis. This situation sometimes lasts for several days on either side of the body prior to or during a headache. Symptoms such as stabbing sensation, vertigo, and problems with vision, speaking, or swallowing might begin prior to the headache pain and usually stop shortly thereafter. If there is a family history of such pain, the disorder is referred to as Familial Hemiplegic Migraine (FHM). Although it is a rare form of Migraine, three distinct genetic forms of FHM have been identified. Such genetic mutations make the brain more excitable and sensitive, by increasing the levels of a chemical called glutamate.

TREATMENTS OFFERED AT IAMC FOR MIGRAINE HEADACHES

IAMC offers following modern evidence based and traditional modalities including:

Our patients experience immediate pain relief with lasting effects.