Headaches are one of the most common problems affecting people. Everyone has experienced a headache at some point in their life. It can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, and race. This type of pain can be a sign of emotional distress or it can be an outcome of a medical disorder, such as migraines, or high blood pressure, depression or anxiety. If you experience chronic migraines it might even have an effect on your work or school performance.
Our pain management center offers a highly accurate diagnoses and treatment options of various headache problems in New York. Additionally, our best Brooklyn migraine specialists aim to provide our patients with the highest level of attention and care. The team of our top doctors is always ready and eager to help with any kind of headache problems you might experience. Our pain management center has all the necessary equipment and top-rated specialists needed to provide the highest level of quality service and effective treatment of any kind of headache treatment.
What is a migraine headache?
According to specialists, a migraine is a powerful type of headache, which is normally accompanied with nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light. A recent study showed that more than 36 million Americans experience migraines. It is also worth mentioning that women encounter migraines 3 times more than men. The majority of people start experiencing migraines between the ages of 10 to 40.
There are two main types of migraine headache. These are:
- With aura
- Without aura
Aura refers to the symptoms that signal that a migraine is coming. These symptoms typically start one hour before the pain and last for 15 minutes to an hour.
What are the typical migraine headache symptoms?
Migraine doctors believe that people may experience a mix of symptoms. Main symptoms of migraine headaches are listed below:
- Sensitivity to light, smells and noise
- Loss of appetite
- Pale skin
- A headache, which begins as a dull ache and transforms into throbbing pain
- Blurred vision
- Fever (in rare cases)
The majority of migraines last for about 4 hours but more serious ones can last for more than 3 days. Some people might get migraine headaches once or twice a year, while others might experience them every few days.
What are the common causes of migraines headache?
Migraine specialists are not completely sure about the causes of chronic headaches. However, the potential reason for migraines could be imbalances in certain brain chemicals. Apart from that, your genes could also encourage migraine headaches. Despite the fact that researchers have not been able to outline specific causes of this problem yet, there are certain risk factors for migraines.
- Age: Migraine headaches do not have age boundaries and they can hit at any point in life. However, you are more prone to first encounter migraines in your teens. It has been also detected that migraines tend to peak in your 30s and become less serious later in life.
- Genes: If any of your family members have migraine headaches, your chances of getting them increase. On the opposite end, if your family history does not have any records of this type of problem, your chances of experiencing migraines are lower.
- Gender: As was mentioned above, women encounter migraines 3 times more often than men do.
- Brain chemicals and nerve signals: When your serotonin levels drops at the beginning of a migraine, the trigeminal nerve releases chemicals known as neurotransmitters, that travel to the brain and cause pain.
- Emotional stress: Migraine doctors say that this is a common cause for migraines. When you are stressed, the brain produces chemicals causing your response. Migraines can be even worsened because of anxiety, fear, and worry, which could lead to even more tension.
What are the symptoms of chronic migraines?
Headache doctors say that symptoms of chronic headaches appear at least 15 days out of every month and for at least three consecutive months. The main symptoms of chronic migraine are depicted below:
- Usually affects one side of the head
- Causes moderate to severe pain
- Becomes worse due to routine physical activity
- Causes a throbbing, pulsating sensation in the side of the brain affected by the headache
Keep in mind that a chronic migraine should be associated with at least two of the aforementioned symptoms for a minimum of eight days in a month.
What does a headache specialist do?
Headache remedy and advice from your regular doctor may not be enough to relieve your pain. If you have not found the solution for your headache, it might be a time to visit a specialist. A specialist will assess your symptoms, detect the cause of the problem and establish a detailed plan for treatment. A headache specialist has a deeper understanding of this type of problem and has access to new cutting-edge treatments, which a regular doctor will not have. It is vital to follow a specialist’s advice because the overuse of pain relief medication can lead to rebound medication.
How to prepare for a visit with a headache specialist?
Before visiting a headache doctor, you need to settle down a few key details. You need to keep in mind that it is important to work with your doctor to get relief. A number of key preparation steps are mentioned below:
- Keep a headache diary: it is advisable to write down the time when you get migraines and what triggers them. Additionally, write down the medication that you used to decrease the level of pain and the approximate duration of the pain.
- Remember symptoms: Even if you think that some symptoms do not have anything to do with your migraine, you still need to make a list of all the symptoms that you have.
- Make a list of medications: it is highly important to write down all the medications that you are currently taking and have used in the past for pain relief. You should also include any medicine that you take for other conditions, as well as vitamins and supplements. Do not forget to mention the doses and frequency of the daily intake.
- Remember the history: This simply means that you need to be ready to tell your headache doctor when the first time you experienced migraines was and whether there is someone in your family who has migraines. You might also need to recall any major stresses or recent life changes.
You need to be well aware that your pain relief highly depends on your communication with a headache specialist so make sure to go to the appointment with as much information as possible.
What are the most universal treatments for migraines?
It is important to have the proper headache treatment in order to achieve pain relief. The type of headache and its underlying cause critically influence treatment for chronic head pain. The majority of occasional migraine headaches types can be easily treated with a number of medications selected by our specialists personally for you.
Chronic cluster headache can be managed with the use of daily prescribed medications such as tricyclic antidepressants. You can also make use of alternative therapies, which strive to reduce stress. They include massage therapy, acupuncture, Botox injections, occipital nerve block, trigger point injections.
If you constantly experience migraine headaches, our clinic is ready to help you manage this problem. Specialists of Pain Physicians NY have more than enough expertise needed to make a personalized migraine prophylaxis plan in order to prevent this type of chronic pain.
As mentioned above, migraine headaches can cause serious discomfort and restrict you from performing everyday activities. Make sure to be in proper contact with your body so you can filter the information that it provides. If you encounter severe headaches, which cannot be managed, make an appointment with a pain management specialist. A doctor will make the headache treatment process smoother, much faster and personalized.