Migraine is a common health condition, affecting around 1 in every 5 women and 1 in 15 men. Migraine is caused by a pounding, throbbing pain on one side of the head. Symptoms include headaches, nausea, sensitivity to light and increased sensitivity to sound.
A migraine is a severe form of headache that starts with an intense throbbing on one side of the forehead and is accompanied by symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light. Migraines are persistent and can last from hours to days, affecting the ability to function. Many overlook migraines as a serious condition because they can happen so frequently. However, they can cause significant distress and hinder one's ability to rest, work, socialize, and continue with the daily routine.
Migraines and headaches differ in severity, duration, and additional symptoms. Unlike a regular headache, there are some tell-tale signs of the onset of a migraine, such as sensitivity to sound and smell, fatigue, mood changes, severe thirst, food cravings, lack of appetite, bloating, constipation, or diarrhea. About 60% of people with migraines notice these symptoms in the days leading up to the attack. Migraines can worsen from physical activity or exposure to light or sound. These symptoms are considered part of the 'prodrome' stage of a migraine—which are key indicators that an attack is about to occur. There are four stages of a migraine: 'prodrome,' 'aura,' 'attack,' and 'post-drome,' but not everyone experiences all stages.
The second stage of a migraine is the 'aura' stage; it can occur before or during the migraine. The aura stage primarily involves visual changes as well as other abnormalities, such as:
Seeing shapes, bright spots, light flashes
Loss of vision
Numbness on one side of the body
Pins and needles sensations in the legs or arms
The frequency of a migraine will differ for every person, but it can be as rare as once a year to as frequently as multiple times a month. The symptoms experienced during a migraine attack are the most commonly associated with migraines, including:
Throbbing or pulsing pain on one or both sides of the head
Light, sound, and sometimes smell and touch sensitivity
Nausea and vomiting
A migraine attack often leaves people feeling drained, exhausted, and out of commission immediately following the attack, although in some cases, people report feeling elated.
How can chiropractors help with migraines?
There is no known cure for migraines, but chiropractic treatment can help decrease their intensity and frequency. Chiropractors may apply manual therapy, soft tissue therapy, electrical stimulation, acupuncture or recommend rehabilitation, lifestyle changes, and co-management. If you're looking for a Chiropractor in Coquitlam or Port Moody, you can book an appointment with us at Inspine Therapy for a tailored treatment plan tailored to your needs.
How do you treat migraines?
Aside from chiropractic treatment, massage therapy, medication, home remedies, lifestyle changes, and avoiding triggers can help treat and alleviate the pain of migraine symptoms.
What causes a migraine?
The root cause of migraine headaches remains unclear, but it seems changes in the brain's blood flow can influence migraine pain. Overactive nerve cells transmit signals to blood vessels, triggering brain pain signals. It's still a mystery why these signals are transmitted in the first place; however, hereditary and environmental factors contribute to a migraine's emergence and severity.
Are migraines genetic?
Yes, migraines are hereditary. About 50-75% of people with one or two parents who struggle with migraines are most likely to experience the same conditions. Some studies show that genetic factors also contribute to the type of symptoms and migraine features one will experience.
What triggers a migraine?
Some migraine triggers include:
Emotional stress: stress, anxiety, and tension from work or home can trigger a migraine
Hormonal changes in women: fluctuations in hormones during a period, pregnancy, or menopause can trigger headaches, as well as hormonal medication like birth control or hormone replacement therapy.
Diet: certain foods like salty or processed foods can lead to a migraine, as well as skipping meals.
Smoking: The nicotine from smoking and smelling cigarette smoke can cause blood vessels in the brain to constrict, triggering the onset of a migraine.
Caffeine: getting too much or too little of your regular dosage of caffeine can cause a headache.
Weather changes: Changes in weather—or specific changes in barometric pressure in the air can result in brain imbalances and spring on a headache
Changes in sleep pattern: some people experience migraines after not getting enough rest, too much sleep, or jet lag.
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Our services include massage, chiropractic, acupuncture, active rehab, clinical counselling, and pilates. Visit our newly renovated clinic and book your appointment today!