Migraines develop in four stages. Patients with migraines with aura, also known as classic migraines,
are most likely to experience all four stages. Patients who have common migraines, migraines without aura, will have the same stages, but are not consciously aware of them.
The interval between migraines is sometimes referred to as the fifth stage of a migraine.
Stage One – Prodrome
The prodromal phase usually begins one or two days prior to the actual migraine headache. Many migraineurs call this the “premonition” phase. Feelings during this phase are all over the map.
Each migraineur has their own personal prodrome profile. Some are giddy, happy, and full of energy, far more so than usual. Others feel a headache start with fatigue, weakness, and irritability.
Anything can herald a migraine and each person has to learn their own prodrome signs if they want to learn to stave off the migraine.
Stage Two – Aura
This phase is skipped by most migraineurs, since most migraineurs suffer from common migraine, migraine without aura.
For those who experience classic migraine with aura, auras can begin anywhere from five minutes to an hour before the headache begins.
Auras are visual effects migraineurs experience. Objects appear to have bright auras or haloes around them. Lightning flashes arc over the field of vision until sight is whited out just before the pain begins.
Stage Three – Headache
This phase lasts anywhere from four to seventy-two hours. Most common is a one-sided headache with a throbbing or pulsing characteristic.
The headache is frequently accompanied by stomach upset, nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light, sound, smell, or some combination of the three.
Stage Four – Postdrome
Coming away from a migraine can be as unpleasant as building up to one. Postdrome is often characterized by tenderness of the head, neck, and stomach. Weakness and fatigue are also common in this phase.
The Dreadful Migraine
A migraine is a throbbing or pulsating headache that is often one sided (unilateral) and associated with nausea; vomiting; sensitivity to light, sound, smells; sleep disruption, and depression.
Attacks are often recurrent and tend to become less severe as the migraine sufferer ages.
Migraines are classified according to the symptoms they produce. The two most common types are migraine with aura and migraine without aura.
Less common types include the following: Basilar artery migraine, Carotidynia, Headache-free migraine, Ophthalmoplegic migraine, Status migraine.
Some women experience migraine headaches just prior to or during menstruation.
These headaches, which are called menstrual migraines, may be related to hormonal changes and often do not occur during pregnancy. Other women develop migraines for the first time during pregnancy or after
Incidence and Prevalence
Migraines afflict about 24 million people in the United States. They may occur at any age, but usually begin between the ages of 10 and 40 and diminish after age 50. Some people experience several migraines a month, while others have only a few migraines throughout their lifetime. Approximately 75% of migraine sufferers are women.
The cause of migraine is unknown. The condition may result from a series of reactions in the central nervous system caused by changes in the body or in the environment.
There is often a family history of the disorder, suggesting that migraine sufferers may inherit sensitivity to triggers that produce inflammation in the blood vessels and nerves around the brain, causing pain.
Signs and Symptoms
Migraine pain is often described as throbbing or pulsating pain that is intensified by routine physical activity, coughing, straining, or lowering the head.
The headache is often so severe that it interferes with daily activity and may awaken the person. The attack is debilitating, and migraine sufferers are often left feeling tired and weak once the headache has passed.
A migraine typically begins in a specific area on one side of the head, then spreads and builds in intensity over 1 to 2 hours and then gradually subsides. It can last up to 24 hours, and in some cases, several days.
Nausea and Your Headache
Headaches can be such a nagging problem. As a symptom, it can be a cause of some serious ailments. Headaches that come with vomiting and nausea can be signs of migraine.
The headache nausea that usually accompanies migraine can be effectively treated by some anti-nausea medication. But one should be more concerned about the headache that migraines cause.
Migraine is increasingly becoming a big problem for a growing number of people. Migraine headaches are brought about by the sudden shrinking and then swelling of blood vessels in the head that causes the pain.
Migraine headaches can be triggered by a lot of things. Tension, for one, is one major trigger of migraines in a lot of people.
Fatigue, hunger, bright lights and a variety of different foods and beverages can also be possible migraine triggers.
The onset of a migraine attack comes with some telltale signs. Nausea and vomiting may be felt before any actual pain or headache is experienced.
Another sign of an incoming migraine attack is seeing flashing lights and colors all around. The body can also feel hot and weak on one side and may last for about 15 to 30 minutes and then followed by an intense headache.
Other warning signs of migraines can also include the feeling of tiredness, depression, and/or restlessness that can go for two to three days before the headache is experienced.
Treatment for migraines includes taking a number of prescription medications which is usually effective when taken just as the headache starts.
Non-medication treatment for migraines includes applying cold compress or splashing cold water on the face at the first sign of headaches.
A migraine attack can also be alleviated by lying down in a quiet and dark room for several hours to sleep or meditate to relax the mind.
There are also other therapies that are being employed in order to help prevent migraines. This includes maintaining a proper diet by avoiding foods such as chocolate, caffeine or alcohol that can trigger a migraine attack.
Living a stress-free life can also help in keeping migraine in check. Meditation and relaxation exercises such as Yoga can also help prevent further migraine attacks.
The use of biofeedback therapy has also been found helpful in trying to prevent migraine attacks by effectively helping relax the mind.
Migraines do not have to be a very painful problem for many people. Knowing how to treat such an ailment as well as how to prevent them can help people lead a more normal life.
Natural Remedies for Migraines and Headaches
Do you suffer from constant headaches or migraines? If you do, you may be looking to seek relief.
With that being said, even if you only occasionally suffer from headaches or migraines, you may still be seeking fast relief, but in a natural way.
For natural ways to relieve the pain and discomfort associated with migraines and headaches, please continue reading on.
Grapes are a great and natural way to seek relief from a headache or a migraine. When it comes to using grapes to seek relief, there are a number of different steps that can be taken.
For natural consumption, just eat a bowlful of ripe grapes. Another approach involves just drinking the juice, as the juice is what provides the relief. With this approach, squish or grind a few grapes and drink the juice.
In keeping with what is consumed, it is important to eat a proper diet. Diet is not only an ideal way to help get over a migraine quicker, but it is also a way to reduce your chances of suffering from one.
A well balanced diet is key to staying happy and healthy. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, honey, yogurt, and milk are advised.
In fact, one other natural remedy for headaches that comes highly recommended is eating a fresh apple each morning.
Water is also key to reducing the average time frame of a headache or a migraine. As with a healthy diet, the regular consumption of water can help to prevent the onset of headaches and migraines.
In addition to drinking plain water, another home and natural remedy for headaches and migraines that comes recommended is that of honey.
Many headache and migraine sufferers report a decrease or complete elimination in pain when drinking a glass of water with a teaspoon of honey.
A cold compress can also and should be used to help treat a migraine or a headache. A ziplock bag filled with ice or a cold washcloth can be used.
Although a cold compress is an ideal way to seek relief from a headache or a migraine, there are also individuals who claim that heat provides them with assistance.
If you would like to try this approach, start with warm washcloths or towels around the neck and armpits.
Those who have the option to do so are encouraged to sleep when they develop a painful headache or migraine. Although sleep may not provide permanent relief, the temporary relief is still preferred by many.
Even if sleep is not possible, like if you are a parent who is at home with your child, stay in a dark room. Light can often complicate a headache, especially a migraine.
This can make the pain much worse or even unbearable for many. For that reason, those suffering from migraines are encouraged to limit their exposure to household lights, sunlight, television, and computer screens.
Headaches, especially migraines, can be debilitating. Some sufferers are unable to continue on with their daily activities.
If this describes you and if you have tried the above mentioned natural and home remedies for migraines without success, you may want to consider contacting a healthcare professional.
As nice as it is to stay natural, it is important to be able to complete your daily tasks, especially if you are employed or a parent.
Immediate treatment for Tension Headaches
Tension Headaches were renamed from tension-type headaches, and were referred to as stress headaches, are one of the most common forms of headaches. These may occur at any age but the most victims of these are adults and adolescents.
A tension headache may occur periodically or daily. When tension headache appears in less than fifthteen days in a month, it is called Episodic.
When tension headache appears for a longer time like two or more times weekly for several months or longer, it is considered chronic. Unfortunately, chronic tension headaches sometimes persists for years.
When Tension Headaches attack, an acute illness on both sides of the head occurs. Tension Headache is a mild to moderate steady pain, tightness or pressure around the head and neck. In its most extensive form,
the pain feels like a hooded cape that drapes down over the shoulders. The severity of the pain varies from one person to another, and from one headache to another in the same person.
Many people report that the pain starts first thing in the morning or late in the day when work stress or conflict at home is anticipated.
Possible cause of these headaches are environmental and or internal stress. This includes family problem, social relationships, and frustrations in everyday life like in school or work.
Tension Headaches really affects our everyday lifestyle. These must be treated immediately before worst comes to worst.
For those who have Episodic Tension Headaches, there are an over-the-counter analgesics such as paracetamol, ibuprofen or aspirin.
There are also many Pain Relievers on the Internet like Fioricet and Tramadol. When choosing the best pain reliever for you,
you should also check the label and the possible side effects with other medicines your taking with. If you have questions or you are not sure what medications to take, ask your doctor or a pharmacist.
If you are already experiencing Long term Tension Headaches or what so we called Chronic Tension Headaches, and pain relievers no longer help you, you should see a doctor for further advice.
Can Headaches Be Caused By Sitting At A Computer?
Has it ever occurred to you that while you are happily typing away on your computer for hours on end you are actually creating a problem in your neck that can lead to chronic headaches?
If you suffer from migraine headaches or tension headaches it may be something you should investigate.
When a person with migraine headaches or tension headaches visits a chiropractor for their pain what does the chiropractor typically do for that patient?
The usual treatment for most headache patients is to manipulate, or adjust, the neck. Chiropractors teach us that most headaches come from neck problems, and that by adjusting or manipulating the neck tension and migraine headaches can be relieved or cured.
Over 80% of headache patients that receive chiropractic treatment show improvement that ranges from slight improvement up to complete elimination of their headache pain.
If this is the case then it seems logical that the majority of migraine headaches or tension headaches originate from spinal (neck) problems.
It also seems logical that if we knew what was causing these neck problems, and eliminated what was causing them, we could also eliminate the headaches, both migraine and tension.
As a chiropractor for 25 years I have treated many patients with migraine headaches and tension headaches.
After examining thousands of patients I discovered that as many as 95% who were experiencing headaches had one thing in common, a reversed cervical (neck) curve.
From the side view a normal neck should have a slight curve in it. But in my experience as a chiropractor I estimate that approximately 95% of my patients with headaches had either a lessening of that curve, no curve at all, or a curve that was completely reversed.
When these “poor neck curvatures” were treated with chiropractic adjustments most showed great improvement.
Chiropractors know that headaches can be caused by “poor neck posture,” so the next question becomes “can sitting at a computer cause poor neck posture?” If the answer is yes, then it’s obvious that sitting at a computer can and does cause headaches.
People usually develop poor neck curvatures because of poor posture habits. Anything a person does that places their head in a position forward to their body will lessen or reverse their normal neck curve. And poor neck curvatures DO cause headaches. Chiropractors have been teaching this for decades.
The types of activities that can lead to poor neck posture include sitting at a computer for extended periods of time, reading with the head bent forward,
sitting while slouching in a chair or on a couch, sleeping with the head or neck in odd positions, or any other activity that places the head in a position forward to the body.
So, to answer our original question, yes, headaches can be caused by sitting at a computer. Sitting at a computer can cause an abnormal neck curvature to develop which can cause headaches.
Good posture can surely prevent the development of poor neck posture, which would seem to be the best remedy, but what can be done if the lessening or reversal of the neck curve has already been developed?
Obviously, chiropractic treatment is an option that could be considered. But there are many other alternative treatments for tension or migraine headaches.
Most people just take a pain pill. But are pain pills the best approach? They surely are in some cases, but there are many other headache treatment options that don’t require the use of potentially harmful drugs.
All drugs have side effects, some of which can end up being worse than the headaches themselves. Before treating your health problems with drugs it is wise to seek the advice of a health professional.
There are many natural remedies for migraine headaches or tension headaches. These include stress and tension reduction, ice therapy (used at the base of the skull),
eliminating food triggers, getting the proper amount of rest, biofeedback, headache pillows or cushions, exercise and many others. Some of these may help relieve headaches, both migraine and tension, and could be investigated further.