Millions complain that their brain feels like it is exploding. This is how painful migraines can be. There are two different kinds – classic and common. What causes them and how are they best treated?
Classic migraines usually start with flashing lights or colors. These warnings are called auras which change the way you see things. Sometimes you may even lose part of your vision. You may also feel irritable, tense or depressed. These occurrences may last from 15 to 30 minutes and may happen before or after your head pain. This pain may be only on one side of your head or both.
These headaches start slower than classics and without the aura. These are usually only on one side of your head.
What causes Migraines?
It is a common belief that migraines are caused by a change in the level of serotonin in your body. When serotonin levels are running high, blood vessels constrict. When serotonin levels are lower, the blood vessels dilate. This swelling can cause pain or other problems.
What triggers Migraines?
There are quite a few things that can trigger a migraine, ranging from stress to certain foods. Here is a list of just some of the possible triggers:
- Weather changes
- Missing meals
- Hormonal changes in women
- Processed meats (bologna, ham, sausage and hot dogs)
- Aged cheese
- Alcoholic beverages (mostly red wine)
- Too much caffeine
- Chocolate, cocoa and carob
- Nuts and peanut butter
How can Migraines be treated?
Over the counter drugs can usually help lessen the pain. These include: Aspirin, Tylenol, Excedrin Migraine, Motrin, Aleve and Orudis KT. If you pain is severe, you may need a prescription to help with the pain and to be able to function. These include: sumatriptan, zolmitriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, almotriptan, eletriptan and frovatriptan. It is recommended to see your doctor if you suspect you have migraines or severe headaches.
There is also a new Neuro-Stim Procedure that has been used to help patients. Click Here to learn more.