Migraines are those headaches that leave you in pieces, that leave you shattered and exhausted beyond belief. A person’s experience of migraines can differ from one person to the next and while not hormone related they can certainly become heightened in Perimenopause and taper off in the postmenopausal period. Women are 3 times more likely to get migraines compared to men.
So what are migraines ?
Migraines are a type of headache with a neurological basis and can be extremely debilitating when one strikes. Often people will describe the ‘aura’ that precedes or comes with a migraine. A migraine headache is much more than a really bad headache - it is generally characterized by severe, one sided pain in addition to nausea and/or vomiting, and vision changes. Generally there is a great sensitivity to light and sound and sometimes the sensory aspect can extend to smell and touch also. They can be described as ‘episodic’, that is that they come on without warning and the frequency is total random and variable - they can last anywhere from a few hours to 3 days or longer in some cases. Chronic migraines is where you get more than 15 headaches in any given month and 8 of these would be classic migraines. There are different types of migraines - those without aura, those with, those with an aura but no headache, Basilar, Hemiplego, Ophthalmus and Vestibular. The most common forms are the first two - migraines with or without aura.
What can you do ?
Dr Rangan Chatterjee recommends a combination of Magnesium & CoQ10 as a preventative for migraines and I have found this to be a good combination. In addition the following tips might help you develop your own toolkit to manage migraines.
So when you look at developing your personal strategy/toolkit for dealing with migraines it is important to look through your lifestyle to identify stressors and other triggers that may affect migraine occurrence. Take the time to keep a diary and track those triggers, this is the best way to get to know what you can do to help yourself and empower yourself with self help techniques that work or you.
If you experience severe pain, paralysis down one side of the body or face, speech difficulties, double vision, or a rash – make sure you contact your doctor to rule out a more serious underlying condition.
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