Migraines are usually referred to as headaches when in fact the two are different. Most people can have headaches from time to time but how would you know if you are already suffering from migraine? Here are some simple diagnoses, if you have a combination of these symptoms, you should see a physician for your treatment:
Weakness causing you to stop from daily activities.
Sensitivity to odors, light or noise
Abdominal pains: an upset stomach followed by vomiting or nausea
Fever, although rare
Aura characterized by flashing lights or dots, jagged or wavy lines and blind spots
A feeling of being very cold or warm
Throbbing or pounding pains which can be moderate to severe. The pain can affect the entire head or pains can shift from one head part to another.
According to statistics, in Canada alone, approximately 200,000 children and 3,000,000 adults are suffering from migraines. The intensity, symptoms and frequency differ from a person to another. 28 million Americans are diagnosed of having migraines every year. Women comprise the 70% of migraine sufferers; they are two to three times more probable to develop migraines.
Migraine should be taken seriously because the reoccurrence of pains can paralyze a victim.
The attack usually lasts for a few hours or days but the afflictions typically hits unexpectedly. To have a better understanding of migraines, you have to know its different types.
Two of the most familiar types of migraine are classic and common. The standard symptom for both types is sensitivity to light; both can have equal intensity of attack. What then are the differences between the two?
Classic migraine has an aura or visual symptoms which arise 10 to 30 minutes prior to an attack. The symptoms can include sights of zigzag lines or flashing lights. Aura can be characterized by hearing and seeing strange things. It can affect the senses of touch, taste or smell.
A person suffering from classic migraine can lose vision temporarily. There is weakness of leg or arm, confusion, speech difficulty or tingling of hands or face. Classic migraine is more common among women than men.
On the other hand, common migraine occurs without an aura; but the person suffers from the symptoms vomiting and nausea.
In addition to the common and classic types of migraine, other forms of migraine are:
Hemiplegic migraine which can cause temporary one sided paralysis and sometimes loss of balance and dizziness (vertigo). The symptoms occur 10 to 90 minutes before the actual attack.
Ophthalmoplegic migraine which can be felt around the eyes. This can involve disturbances in the vision; an example is having double vision and tired eyes.
Benign exertional headache is characterized by a brief headache which is caused by bending, running, coughing or lifting. The headache rarely lasts for a long time but usually begins prior to the start of any activities.
Menstrual migraine is more predictable and usually occurs during menstrual periods.
Basilar Artery migraine is a pain connected to the main artery of the brain. The pre migraine symptoms can include double vision, poor muscle coordination or dizziness. This kind of migraine is common among young adult women and adolescents and is usually associated with menstrual cycle.
Status migrainosus is exemplified by long lasting and intense headaches and nausea. The attack can last for 72 hours or longer. Behavioral symptoms such as depression and anxiety often follow the distress. It is very rare and extreme and usually requires hospitalization; some drugs can also trigger this kind of migraine.
Headache free migraine is characterized by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation and other visual problems. Patients suffer from all the said symptoms except headaches.
Another form of migraine is the abdominal migraine which is typical among children. The pain is severe in the midline abdomen and can last from 1 to 72 hours.
There are different migraines brought about by certain activities or tensions in life. While the differences are not that extremes, certain medications should properly be given to avoid further illnesses. Consulting a physician is always a good move to know the health problem and to acquire the necessary treatments for you.
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