Updated date:

Migraine: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

Author:

I love to write on topics that can be helpful for others and we can all learn something from each other.

Disclaimer:

This article is just an overview and general information about the causes and symptoms of migraines. This cannot be considered as medical advice and it is always recommended to consult a medical professional for the correct diagnosis of the problem.

What is Migraine?

Migraine is a condition that causes severe throbbing/pulsating pain usually on one side of the head. Migraine is much more severe than a headache and can last for 24-72 hours or even a week in severe cases. These are more common in women but can happen to anyone at any stage of life. Migraine attacks can be so severe that they can affect your daily routine and work. Let’s have a look at some of the reasons and triggers of a migraine attack.

Causes of Migraine

  • Stress
  • Anxiety & Depression
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Hormonal Imbalance
  • An unhealthy diet which includes excess intake of alcohol or caffeine
  • Prolonged usage of the computer or mobile screens
  • Lack of sleep
  • Genetic

Triggers of Migraine

If you have been diagnosed with migraines, you need to observe the triggers in order to reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. These triggers might be different for everyone but there are some common triggers that increase migraine attacks.

  • Depression & Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Lack of sleep/irregular sleeping pattern
  • Strong smell/odor
  • Acidity
  • Hunger/long gap between meals
  • Eye strain/excess screen usage
  • Too much/loud noises
  • Direct sunlight that might strain your eyes
  • Cervical/back pain
  • Extreme temperatures (too hot or too cold)
  • Certain medications
  • Mood swings
  • Pre-menstrual Syndrome (PMS)
  • Excess physical strain/too much exercise

Symptoms of Migraine

There are some common symptoms that you might experience if you are having migraines frequently. You can have these symptoms before, during, or after a migraine attack, or even on a daily basis when you do not have migraines.

  • Photophobia (sensitivity to light)
  • Phonophobia (sensitivity to sound)
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue/tiredness
  • Vertigo (feeling dizzy when changing position)
  • Frequent yawning
  • Sensitivity to pain in the area you had a migraine
  • Drowsiness
  • Irritability
  • Depression/Anxiety
  • Mood swings

Treatment/Remedies for Migraine

Till now, there is no cure for migraine but you can follow/implement some or all of these remedies to reduce the severity and frequency of pain so that it doesn’t affect your daily routine and work. By following these, you will feel better and get relief from that throbbing pain and discomfort. All these remedies might not work the same for everyone, so you need to identify which one works the best for you.

Meditation/Deep Breathing

This is one of the most effective remedies for migraine attacks. Meditation and deep breathing exercises help to soothe and relax your nerves and improve the functioning of your brain.

Low-Intensity Physical Activity

If you are having constant severe migraine attacks frequently, it is not advisable to indulge in intense hard-core exercises as they can increase your problem. Instead, do some simple cardio exercises like walking, cycling, swimming, etc. that do not increase the pressure and pain in your head.

Identify the Triggers

The most important and essential step in reducing the frequency of migraine attacks is observing and identifying the triggers of migraine. Everyone will have a different trigger. Once you identify it, you can avoid it to reduce the frequency of your migraine attacks.

Lifestyle Modification

Lifestyle modification is not just doing fad diets and intense physical activity. It is the process of modifying your daily habits and lead a healthy lifestyle. You need to make certain changes in your daily routine like improving your sleep pattern and taking proper rest, have a healthy diet and avoid or reduce junk and fried foods, include some physical activity, reduce stress by doing meditation/deep breathing, and certain other changes which will make you feel happy from inside. It is difficult to believe but these things impact a lot on our health.

Balancing your Hormones

Hormonal imbalance can increase mood swings and depression that can trigger migraine attacks. Following a healthy diet and exercise routine is the best way to balance your hormones.

Reducing Gap in your Meals

The increased gap in your meals can cause acidity which also causes migraines along with nausea and vomiting. To avoid this, always have your meals at regular intervals and avoid staying hungry for a long time.

Avoid Going Out in Direct Sunlight

Direct sunlight can cause strain in your eyes and cause extreme tiredness that can cause migraines. It is best to avoid going out in peak sunlight but if it is not possible, then make sure to wear sunglasses and cover your head with a scarf. This will cause less strain and pressure.

Reduce Caffeine and Alcohol Intake

Caffeine and alcohol increase migraine attacks. It is best to totally avoid drinks with caffeine, but if not possible, you should reduce it.

Regulate Vitamin and Iron Deficiency

Certain deficiencies can also cause migraines. Check your levels by doing the necessary blood tests and consult a doctor for medications/supplements required.

Avoid Excessive Loud Noises

Loud/excessive noise can cause as well as increase the frequency and intensity of pain. Try to avoid it as much as possible.

Medications

There are certain medications that help to prevent migraine attacks and reduce their effects on our bodies. Along with the above remedies, it is best to consult a medical professional/specialist to help you recover and lead your daily routine without any obstacles.

Conclusion

This article is just my experience and thoughts on migraines. My intention is not at all to provide any medical advice. These are just some common symptoms and remedies that worked well for me.

Sources:

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/migraine-headache/symptoms-causes/syc-20360201

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/5005-migraine-headaches

https://www.webmd.com/migraines-headaches/migraines-headaches-migraines

https://www.healthline.com/health/migraine

This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2021 Priya

Related Articles