Migraine | primary headache disorder | a disease | a condition | Four Stages of migraine

A migraine is a primary headache disorder that characterized by recurrent severe and painful headache.

They can be preceded or accompanied by sensory warning signs, such as flashes of light, blind spots, tingling in the arms and legs, nausea, vomiting, and increased sensitivity to light and sound. The excruciating pain that migraines bring can last for hours or even days (Usually lasts up to 72 hours).

Migraine is a disease by definition also it is a neurological condition by neurological origins. It is thought to be generally influenced by genetics, but can also be precipitated by trauma to the head such as traumatic brain injury that is frequently incurred by our Veterans who have survived IED explosions and such.

Migraine is one of the top ten debilitating diseases in the world. That number is in consideration of such diseases and conditions such as quadriplegia and cerebral palsy. It is recognized by the Social Security Administration for disability benefits, and is rated through the Veterans Benefits Administration as a disabling disease as well. This should give you some idea of just how significant the impact of Migraine is on the average sufferer.

Many times people will have headaches and call them "migraines" when they just mean "a bad headache.

Migraine sufferers are more likely women than men, and they usually begin in women in their 20's and in men a bit later.

The symptoms of migraine headaches can occur in various combinations.

Pain areas:

in the face or neck, usually confined to one side of the head, but can occur on either side of the head.

Pain types:

can be dull


can be acute, frequent, severe, or throbbing,


aura, pins and needles, sensitivity to light, or sensitivity to sound,

Whole body: dizziness,

light headedness, or malaise,


nausea or vomiting,


blurred vision or distorted vision,

Also common: irritability, nasal congestion, or scalp tenderness

Some lifestyle alterations might help reduce migraine, including:

Drinking plenty of water.

Water deprivation and dehydration can lead to headaches and serve as a trigger for migraines. It can also prolong migraines. Increased water intake reduces the frequency and severity of headaches.

Avoiding certain foods.

Your horrible headaches could be triggered by foods. Alcohol, chocolate, and caffeine have all been identified as headache triggers. There are a few classic foods that trigger headaches in many people, but many different foods can trigger headaches for certain individuals. That's why keeping a food diary to document your headaches is a good idea.

Practice muscle relaxation exercises.

Relaxation techniques may include progressive muscle relaxation, meditation or yoga.

Get enough sleep, but don't oversleep.

Get the right balance of sleep each night, making sure to go to bed and wake up at consistent times? Aim for a regular sleep schedule and get an adequate amount of sleep.

Rest and relax.

Try to rest in a dark, quiet room when you feel a headache coming on. Place an ice pack wrapped in a cloth on the back of your neck and apply gentle pressure to painful areas on your scalp.

Keep a headache diary.

Continue recording in your headache diary even after you see your doctor. It will help you learn more about what triggers your migraines and what treatment is most effective.

Reduce stress.

Because stress triggers migraines for many people, try to avoid overly stressful situations, or use stress-reduction techniques such as meditation.

Four Stages of migraine.

Migraines often begin in childhood, adolescence or early adulthood. Migraines may progress through four stages: prodrome, aura, headache and post-drome, though one may not experience all stages.


One or two days before a migraine, you may notice subtle changes that warn of an upcoming migraine, including:

  • · Constipation

  • · Mood changes, from depression to euphoria

  • · Food cravings

  • · Neck stiffness


Aura may occur before or during migraines. Most people experience migraines without aura.

Auras are symptoms of the nervous system. They are usually visual disturbances, such as flashes of light or wavy, zigzag vision.


A migraine usually lasts from four to 72 hours if untreated. The frequency with which headaches occur varies from person to person. Migraines may be rare, or strike several times a month. During a migraine, you may experience:

  • · Pain on one side or both sides of your head

  • · Pain that feels throbbing or pulsing

  • · Sensitivity to light, sounds, and sometimes smells and touch

  • · Nausea and vomiting

  • · Blurred vision

Post drome

The final phase, known as post drome, occurs after a migraine attack. You may feel drained and washed out, while some people feel elated. For about 24 hours, you may also experience:

  • · Confusion

  • · Moodiness

  • · Dizziness

  • · Weakness

Sensitivity to light and sound

1. Neck stiffness. When a person is probably sicker of this headache, he/she will feel some stiffness in their neck.

2. Constipation Yeah, constipation is one the sign that you are going to get this headache.

3. Yawning I know, you will be thinking that how yawning can be a sign of this headache. But taking continually yawning is a sign of an upcoming headache.

4. Increased thirst When you are soon going to be a patient of this headache, you start feeling too much thirst and you start urine frequently.

5. Feels depression and irritation When you are soon going to be a patient of this headache, you start feeling high depression and have irritation with almost everything.

6. Bother by bright light If you have a problem going in bright lights or bright places, and if you also have a problem with a loud noise, then it is a clear sign that you will get this headache soon.

7. Vision problem It is one of the most important symptoms of this headache. Because if you start having an unclear vision then, it is a clear sign that you are going to be a patient of this headache soon.

How to diagnose migraine headaches?

There are several ways to find out. First of all: where in head does the pain hurt?

The second is to see what kind of prodroms you have. Migraine is an electrolyte imbalance caused by the over activity of the sensory neurons. In a migraine’s brain, the sensory neurons have much more connections than the same neurons in a typical non-migraine brain. This is why migraine person tend to be overstimulated by strong bright lights, strong odors, loud sounds, more sensitive to touch, and some also are super tasters,

Migraine is a clinical diagnosis that means there is no migraine test.

Health related personals use blood work and scans of the head to determine if any other cause of headache is present, but not to diagnose migraine. The following is the criteria of the International Headache Society. The criteria were developed for research purposes to ensure studies in different countries were enrolling the same type of patient. To enter a study, you must fulfill all the criteria. There are patients that have migraine that do not fulfill all the criteria, however they would not be allowed entrance to a study. I have also included a simple 3 questions to screen,

Migraine without aura (MO) diagnostic criteria

A. At least five headache attacks lasting 4 - 72 hours (untreated or unsuccessfully treated), which has at least two of the four following characteristics:

1. Unilateral location

2. Pulsating quality

3. Moderate or severe intensity (inhibits or prohibits daily activities)

4. Aggravated by walking stairs or similar routine physical activity

B. During headache at least one of the two following symptoms occur:

1. Phonophobia and photophobia

2. Nausea and/or vomiting

Simple 3 question migraine screen (positive if 2 out of 3 answered yes)

  1. · Has a headache limited your activities for a day or more in the last three months?

  2. · Are you nauseated or sick to your stomach when you have a headache?

  3. · Does light bother you when you have a headache?

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