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MAIN Arrow to Health Health Arrow to Pain Pain Arrow to Migraines Migraines

young woman with painful migraine headacheAlthough a migraine does share a symptom (albeit more severe and prolonged) with common headaches, migraines are a neurological syndrome with their own specific causes, symptoms, and treatments.

Migraine symptoms

The first symptoms of an oncoming migraine, such as mood change, sleepiness, or even constipation can appear hours or even days before the actual migraine.

For about one quarter of migraine sufferers, these first symptoms are followed by the aura phase, which can manifest as auditory, olfactory, or visual hallucinations.

The actual head pain of a migraine can either follow or accompany the aura phase, and usually lasts anywhere from four to seventy two hours. After the pain subsides, a variety of symptoms maybe be experienced and may include anything from being weak, tired, and depressed to feeling euphoric and refreshed.

Treating migraine headaches

The exact cause of migraines is still unknown, although there is a generally accepted theory that points to a brain neurotransmitter disorder that reacts to certain environmental or food triggers. Despite the mystery surrounding the exact cause of migraines, there is a great deal known about its treatment, and preventative measures that can be taken to ease the most debilitating symptoms.

Treating migraines can be difficult for some sufferers, and the best treatment method and the level of success will vary from person to person. Most treatments fall in to one of three categories: 1. migraine drugs, 2. avoiding migraine triggers, and 3. controlling migraine symptoms.

The best way to treat migraines is to stop them before they start. Keeping a journal, especially a food journal, can go a long way to identifying food triggers and other daily habits, and can be instrumental in designing a lifestyle that eliminates the causes of migraines.

If the symptoms of an oncoming migraine do start appearing, there are pain relievers that can be prescribed that will help to abort the migraine before it starts. Aspirin or ibuprofen are usually prescribed for mild migraines. For more severe symptoms, prescription triptan drugs have been found to be very effective in relieving the pain, nausea and sensitivity to light and sound that are associated with migraines.

Natural supplements such as feverfew, coenzyme Q10, butterbur or magnesium supplements have also been shown to be at least moderately successful at controlling symptoms.

More about migraine pain & treatment around the Web:


Migraine Headache - Topic fact sheet discussing the causes, various types of migraine symptoms and pain, a list of food triggers, treatment options including home care tips & advice.

Natural Remedies for Migraine Relief - Check out tips on vitamin, mineral and herbal remedies for migraine.

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