Migraines Are Making Me Miserable

Are migraines making your life miserable? You aren’t alone. Over one billion people worldwide suffer from migraines, including about 40 million women, men, and children in the United States.

Whether you get migraines frequently or once in a while, there’s no doubt that the pain and discomfort can debilitate you and impede your quality of life. If you’re ready for migraine pain to stop, the team at Peak Physical Medicine in Visalia, California, can help.

Our expert providers have skill and experience diagnosing the underlying causes of your migraines and offering the best treatment options for your unique migraine case — with no medications or drugs!

Take a moment to learn more about migraines and how the team at Peak Physical Medicine can help!

What are migraines?

People usually describe migraines as a severe headache, but the headache is only one symptom of migraines (though it’s often the most troublesome). Migraine pain, which varies in severity among people, can last for an hour or two, or it can last for days.

Migraine headaches typically affect one side of the head, though it’s possible to feel pain on both sides, and are described as a form of intense, severe, throbbing pain. Migraines often appear for the first time in childhood, adolescence, or early your adulthood; however, you can develop migraine at any age.

The condition includes four stages, but not every person goes through each stage. They include:

  • Premonitory phase: Also called prodrome phase, this phase occurs before the migraine and may include pain-free symptoms that show you may develop a migraine (e.g., neck pain; sensitivity to light/smell/sound; stomach upset; mood changes) , and stomach trouble, like diarrhea or constipation.
  • Aura phase: Includes sensory disturbances that affect your sense of sight (e.g., flashing or zig-zag lights), touch (e.g., numbness or tingling), or ability to speak/comprehend (e.g., slurred or jumbled words; trouble understanding speech)
  • Headache phase: Includes headache pain that may worsen with movement, light, sounds, or smells
  • Post-drome phase: Persisting after the headache, this last phase includes fatigue, confusion, feeling unwell, and can last for hours or several days

Why am I getting migraines?

Researchers believe temporary changes in the nerves, chemicals, and blood vessels in your brain trigger migraines, though they haven’t determined the exact cause. Medical researchers also believe genetics may play a role, since about half of people who experience migraines have a close relative with the condition.

Sometimes a chemical or physical change triggers migraines. The more common migraine triggers include:

  • Hormonal changes in women
  • Certain drinks (e.g., alcohol, especially wine;  too much caffeine)
  • Stress
  • Sensory stimuli (e.g., bright or sunlight; loud noises; powerful smells)
  • Sleep changes (e.g., jet lag; too much or too little sleep)
  • Physical factors (e.g., exercise; sexual activity)
  • Weather changes
  • Medications (e.g., oral contraceptives; vasodilators)
  • Foods (e.g., skipping a meal; aged cheeses; salty and processed foods)
  • Food additives (e.g., artificial sweeteners; MSG)

Are there treatments for migraines?

Finding an effective treatment for your migraines isn’t always easy. Since everyone may have different causes or triggers for their migraines, it’s important to seek help from a health provider who can help diagnose the underlying cause and offer different options for effective and drug-free relief.

At Peak Physical Medicine, our providers consider your symptoms, medical history, family history, and any triggers you’ve noticed when uncovering the causes of your migraines. We then create a customized treatment plan with options for minimizing or eliminating migraine flare-ups.

Treatment modalities for migraine headaches include:

If migraines are making you miserable, don’t wait any longer to seek help! Learn how you can move on from migraine pain and reclaim your quality of life by contacting Peak Physical Medicine’s Visalia office, or request an appointment online now.

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