Migraine: how to get rid of a headache
This disease affects more than 20% of people. And most of them were women. Often suffer from migraines in 20-40 years, i.e. in their most productive years. Unlike more serious diseases – heart attacks or strokes – migraine is not life-threatening. However, it can severely poison a person’s life.
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Unfortunately, modern medicine has not yet learned to completely cure the disease. But much to relieve a headache and reduce the number of attacks we are quite capable.
How to distinguish migraine from other types of headache? It is characterized by the following features:
- The pain is intense, throbbing, one-sided (that is, localized right or left).
- Increases even with minimal exercise. For example, when walking or bending.
- Sometimes accompanied by the concomitant symptoms: nausea or vomiting, and intolerance of bright light and loud sounds.
- An attack may last a very long time – from 4 to 72 hours.
The syndrome of Alice in Wonderland
Sometimes the attack is preceded by the appearance of temporary visual or tactile disturbances (the so-called aura). Usually it is vivid or bright spots, sensation of a veil before the eyes or tingling in the hands and face. But sometimes the aura takes on an unusual shape. Its a rare species is even called the syndrome of Alice in Wonderland (in honor of the book by Lewis Carroll, which describes a similar phenomenon). The syndrome of Alice, the attack is preceded by visual images of people or animals (remember the Cheshire cat?), which float in the air. In addition, the patient temporarily changing the perception of the size of the surrounding objects (they seem huge or tiny), disturbed sense of time flow.
Not much pain
If the attacks bother you rarely (1-2 times per month) for headaches usually use analgesics (paracetamol) and NSAIDs (ibuprofen, naproxen). In addition, apply triptan – more effective treatments specifically designed to combat migraine. They quickly stop the pain. However, if the seizures happen more often or last long, pain relievers can hurt. When taking more than 15 days per month painkillers can, conversely, increase headaches. Therefore, in such cases, doctors recommend prophylactic therapy – the regular administration of drugs that reduce the number of attacks and improve the body’s response to pain. As a rule, are appointed antidepressants, antiepileptic means, beta-blockers, and the drug of botulinum toxin A – Botox. It is usually used in cosmetics. However, doctors noticed that patients who received injections of Botox, reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. Strange but true!
Headache in migraine is often caused by a particular precipitating factors (triggers). Among them are hormonal changes, certain foods (e.g. red wine, cheese), hunger, dehydration, lack of or excessive sleep, excessive physical stress, bright sunlight, anxiety, depression. Triggers tend to reinforce each other’s action. Therefore, the avoidance of provocateurs is the easiest and most effective way to reduce the number of attacks without medication. To prevent migraines also benefit from acupuncture, therapy, biofeedback, relaxation.