Migraine Headaches Symptoms

Migraine Headaches Symptoms
Migraine Headaches Symptoms

Migraine Headaches Symptoms - The migraine headaches if they are not treated effectively they can last from 4 hours to 3 days. The main symptoms of migraine headaches are the headache and apart from it other symptoms include the nausea, vomiting and intolerance to light and sound. Some people also experience prior to a migraine headaches crisis vision disorder.

The experience of migraine headaches differs from person to person so each patient describes their own experience from migraine headaches. The frequency of migraine headaches crisis can vary from patient to patient. It can be very rare to very frequent. On average, each patient may experience migraine headaches crises every 2 to 3 months.

What are the migraine headache symptoms?

1. The headache

The main symptom of migraine headaches is the headache. In the two thirds of the cases the headache is detected in only half the part of the head, usually behind the eye, while in the remaining one third of the cases the pain lies across the whole head. In terms of intensity the pain is very strong and persistent. Most people suffering from migraine headaches feel that a hammer is hitting their heads from the inside in the same rhythm as their pulse.

2. Mild pain that gradually becomes intense

A common symptom of migraine headaches is that usually the migraine headache pains begins as mild and develops to become a vibrant pain. The pain can be transferred from one part of the head to the other and is usually more intense in the front or around the head. The frequency of a crisis varies considerably from person to person. Many people experience 2 -4 migraine crises a month. Some may experience migraines every few days, while in others it appears only once or twice a year.

The most easily recognizable symptom of migraine headaches is that the pain is identified in only one side of the head. Other symptoms also include:

3. Aura

The term aura means a series of neurological symptoms, such as shimmer or vision, numbness on one side of the body, weakness, hallucinations, speech disorders, etc.

The aura is a symptom of migraine headaches that exists in only a small percentage of the patients. The symptoms may also include vision impairment; problems with hearing, smell, taste or touch. The aura can last from a few minutes to an hour. The most common type aura is the visual aura and can cause illumination or sparking figures in the vision.

4. Other symptoms associated with migraine headaches may be: Sickness, Intolerance to light, sounds, odours or movement, Stomach discomfort, abdominal pain, Loss of appetite, Fatigue, Vertigo, Diarrhea.

Types of Migraine headaches

Practically there are two different types of migraine headaches:
  • Headaches accompanied by aura
  • Headaches with no aura.

What starts migraine headaches?

Migraine headaches usually begin after a stimulus affects the brain. For example an ingredient found in foods. When this happens the brain secretes some substances called ‘Amines’. The “amines” notify and stimulate the arteries found in the brain shell. The arteries then start to shake, and this increases the supply of blood and at the same time allowing the flow of various substances that cause the migraine headache pain.

In people that have a disposition to migraine headaches, the series of processes can be triggered when any part of the brain is stimulated. The stimuli may differ from person to person, but the most common are the following:
  • Alcohol
  • Cheese and dairy products
  • Caffeine products
  • Citrus fruits and juices
  • Seafood
  • Onions
  • Pork

Not all patients have sensitivity to foods. Some people find that their migraine headaches are probably initiated by hormonal changes associated with menstruation (period), menopause, or when taking contraceptives drugs.

Migraine headaches symptoms, the different stages:

A typical migraine headache usually develops in the following stages:

Stage #1: The early symptoms

May precede the migraine headache 24 hours or more
Usually lasts several hours, but may hold even days.
Major characteristics are: fatigue, anger, euphoria, diarrhoea, appetite for specific foods and sensitivity to light, sounds and smells
During this stage the person is either feeling very tired and yawns continuously or is very energetic and completes its activities in less time than what is normally required.
Some people also feel an irresistible desire for certain types of food, especially for sweets.

These are symptoms that many people have experienced and it is a signal that after a few hours they will suffer from migraine headache.

Stage  #2: The Aura stage

The aura is a symptom that begins 20 minutes to an hour before the outbreak of the headache. At this phase, is likely to experience impaired vision, such as illumination. It may also be hard to talk or hear, to have feelings of confusion, disorientation or feel numbness in your body. The aura could sometimes disappear before the start of the pain, but there is also the possibility to remain throughout the duration of the migraine headache.

The aura stage as a symptom is present in 15% of the cases.

Stage #3: The headache stage

This is the most painful phase of a migraine headache crisis, which is characterised by vibrant pain, usually on one side of the head. However, the pain may affect a different side of the head each time, but sometimes can also be extended across the whole skull. The pain is becoming more intense during physical activity, while many may feel nausea or even vomiting. A usual symptom of migraine at this stage is photosensitivity, so it is possible to relief your symptoms if you withdraw into a quiet and dark room.

The headache is usually on one side of the head and can last for a few hours to three days. Symptoms may include:
  • Vibrant pain
  • Intolerance to light
  • Intolerance to sounds
  • Intolerance to odours
  • Nausea and / or vomiting
  • Intolerance to movement (the pain worsens with physical movement, such as when climbing stairs)

At this stage the patients experience is intense. If no proper treatment is provided it can last from 4 hours to up to 3 days. The headache pain is usually accompanied by anorexia, nausea and vomiting, and is exacerbated by light, sounds, walking, cough, etc. At this stage the sufferer prefers to lay down in a quiet dark room and stop any activity.

Stage #4: After the migraine headaches crisis

This stage follows the phase of the headache and may last for a few hours to several days. When the headache of the migraine is over, many patients report that they feel exhausted and weak, or too happy! Many people need a few days until they return to the normal pace.

Migraine headache symptoms that need immediate attention

If you experience any of the symptoms below you need to immediately seek professional advice
  • Sudden headaches without any warning symptoms
  • Change in the type of headache, especially if you are over the age of 55
  • Headaches accompanied by fever o
  • Headaches with difficulties in vision, feelings of weakness, sensory loss, weakness on one side of the body or difficulty in walking.
  • Headaches that are becoming intense in frequency or duration.
  • Headache that start after an accident or trauma to the head
  • Constant headaches that do not decline.

Migraine headaches are difficult and painful diseases that in severe form can negatively affect the quality of life of people suffer from it. This article presented a detail overview of migraine headaches symptoms and the different stages of migraine headaches.

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