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Migraines

First, a migraine is not just “a bad headache.”

 

Knowing the difference between an actual migraine and other common types of headaches is key to finding proper treatment options that will work to relieve the pain.

 

This monster of a headache is very common* and typically described as a pulsing, throbbing, intense pain that is usually 1-sided (though it can affect both sides).

 

Migraines are commonly associated with neurological symptoms like sensitivity to light, sound, or certain smells. You can also have nausea and an aura that is often described as “a halo” around lights.


* Migraines affect over 39 Million people in the United States according to the American Migraine Foundation
 

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The top 10 triggers

for migraines: 

  • Stress

  • Change in sleep schedule

  • Hormones
    (75% of women who suffer migraines report that it is associated with their menstrual cycle)

  • Caffeine & Alcohol

  • Changes in the weather

  • Diet (there is a long list!)

  • Dehydration

  • Light

  • Smell

  • Overuse of medication (Yes, your headache medication can cause headaches! It’s a thing!)

Source: Top 10 Migraine Triggers and How to Deal with Them | AMF (americanmigrainefoundation.org)

Traditional Treatment for Headaches

 

There are many “home care” remedies that people try:

  • Self-massage, rubbing your head, neck, and temples

  • Stretching the muscles of your neck and shoulders

  • Taking a hot bath or using ice or heat

 

If you go to your medical doctor, you may be told to use over the counter medications, or they may give you muscle relaxers or other medication to help with the pain.

 

They may also suggest various methods to reduce the stress in your life. To rule out more serious possibilities, they may request a CT scan. They may also recommend supplements like Vitamin B12, or Magnesium.

We can treat some of these things, but there are SO MANY triggers with migraines, and it’s like filling a bucket. One thing may not be THE trigger, but the more triggers you have, the more your bucket fills, and once it is full, it will overflow into a migraine with a vengeance!

One of the best things you can do is to start tracking your triggers. Your treatment options will depend on what triggers your migraines. Since there are so many triggers, there are no treatments that are guaranteed to relieve migraines. Preventing migraines from occurring may seem like a constant fight, but there are things you can do in your daily life to help migraines to happen less often, and to not be as bad when they do happen.

For instance:

  • Staying hydrated, and eating well

  • Exercising consistently

  • Talking with your medical doctor to see if there are any preventative medications they recommend

  • Staying on a consistent sleep schedule

  • Using stress reduction techniques

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HAVE QUESTIONS?

CALL  804-596-5232

ASK DR. CAPRI

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