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Migraine Headaches

Uploaded by mumsa1 on Mar 02, 2012

Migraine headaches can affect people of any age.


What are migraine headaches?

Diagnosis

How Chemist Online can help

Symptoms

Effect on your life

Advice & Support

Causes

Treatment

What are migraine headaches?

We all suffer from a headache at some point in our lives. Where migraine headaches are different is that the migraine itself is the central cause of the person becoming unwell. You may be in good health overall and not suffering from any diseases or conditions, but the sudden onset of migraine symptoms can still occur, due to what may be a range of possible causes.

Symptoms

Symptoms of migraine headaches include:

sudden headache attacks

nausea and vomiting

sensitivity to light, loud music and other noise (e.g., crowd noise)

disturbance of vision

feeling unable to do anything other than go to bed

Some people may also experience fever and feelings of drowsiness.

Causes

Causes of migraine can include:

changes in levels of certain chemicals in the brain

high blood pressure

eye strain

hormonal factors (e.g., as a result of being pregnant)

certain medications

physical and emotional stress

smoking and alcohol

dietary triggers

additives

eating meals infrequently

Diagnosis

If you are suffering from the aforementioned symptoms and are struggling to manage your pain through taking over-the-counter remedies, make an appointment to see your GP. After taking your medical history, he or she will ask you some questions about your symptoms, carry out a physical examination, and then recommend an appropriate course of treatment.

Note: If your headache occurs suddenly and severely, seek medical advice urgently, particularly if you have recently received a blow to the head.

Effect on your life

Most people with migraine say that this condition can be a miserable experience. The sudden onset of symptoms (a migraine attack) can occur without warning and can mean you feel unable to do anything other than go to bed or sit quietly in a dark room until your symptoms ease. Commonly, a migraine can last for up to 72 hours.

Treatment

As yet, there is no definite cure for migraines, but there are several treatments which can help to reduce symptoms. These include:

painkillers

anti-inflammatories

anti-sickness medicines

triptan medicines (these make the blood vessels around the brain contract – easing symptoms)

acupuncture, massage, reflexology

migraine clinics

It can be a good idea to keep a migraine diary to try to track which food, drink and/or activities seem to trigger your symptoms. That way you can organise your life as best you can to try to avoid migraine attacks, and also protect yourself when it comes to making career choices. For example, many people with migraine find their symptoms can be...

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Uploaded by:   mumsa1

Date:   03/02/2012

Category:   Medicine

Length:   3 pages (572 words)

Views:   3521

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