Migraines are chronic headaches that cause sufferers to experience a great deal of pain that lasts for several hours or even days at a time.
In some cases, people may experience warning signs that let them know a migraine is on its way.
These warning signs are known as auras, and they typically include seeing flashes of light, tingling in the arms or legs, or blind spots.
Medical science has not come up with a cure for migraine headaches, but there are a variety of different treatments that can be used not only for treating an existing migraine, but for trying to prevent them as well.
Symptoms of Migraine
For most people, the initial onset of migraines begins in childhood, adolescence, or very early adulthood. The majority of migraine headaches include the following symptoms:
- Nausea (with or without vomiting)
- Moderate to severe pain (sometimes this is located on only one side of the head, though both sides may be affected)
- Sensitivity to light and/or sound
- Head pain that has a throbbing or pulsating quality to it
- Pain that gets worse with physical activity (particularly intensive physical activity such as rapid walking, running, jogging, or lifting)
- Pain that interferes with a person’s normal daily activities
When migraines are not treated, they typically last for at least four hours. Most migraine sufferers, however, experience headaches that last for much longer. Some people tend to get migraines several times a month, or even once or twice per week. Others are more fortunate and only experience these headaches a few times per year.
Some additional symptoms that may be present immediately preceding a migraine include a craving for sweets, drowsiness, thirst, feelings of intensified energy, depression, or irritability.
Treatment of Migraine
There are two basic kinds of treatment that are routinely prescribed to people who suffer from migraines: pain-relieving and preventive medications.
Even though most people who have migraines would benefit quite a bit from taking preventive medications, most of them do not. Preventive medications certainly do not completely eliminate a person’s chances of developing migraines, but research has shown that they do reduce the number of headaches for most people. One of the primary drawbacks to taking these medicines is the potential for side effects, some of which can be serious.
For the most part, the best course of action is to implement some basic lifestyle changes in an effort to reduce the severity and number of migraines.
- Get enough sleep – it is best to get between six and eight hours of sleep each night. For migraine sufferers, it is equally important to avoid oversleeping, as this can lead to the development of headaches.
- Muscle relaxation exercises – these are quite important for people who get migraines. Activities such as yoga, Pilates, and meditation help to relieve stress, which can help to reduce the number of migraines that a person gets each year.
- Rest and relaxation – since stress is believed to be a primary contributing factor to the development of migraines, it is critically important that sufferers make every effort to be relaxed and well-rested.
- Some alternative treatments that are highly recommended include massage therapy, acupuncture, and biofeedback.
Natural Relief for Migraines
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Why do we promote this?
1. “Migraine.” MayoClinic.com. http://mayoclinic.com/health/migraine-headache/DS00120
2. “Migraines.” WebMd.com. http://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/default.htm
3. “Migraine Statistics.” Relieve Migraine Headache. http://www.relieve-migraine-headache.com/migraine-statistics.html.
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