Regular headaches and migraines are really frustrating and disturbing – especially when you do not manage them or don’t take any remedial measures instantly. If you take action promptly, your day-to-day life will not get disturbed. In spite of taking some remedial actions and managing migraines diligently – if you experience any sudden and unusual severe headache – then you must see a specialist immediately. Consult migraine specialist in Hyderabad, explain everything in detail to your doctor including the pattern of headaches and associated symptoms – such as auras, nausea and vomiting. If you are planning to seek migraine treatment the following information will be helpful to you.
The things to do first
As you are very well aware of yourself than anybody else, you know what is normal and what is abnormal. Therefore, make a note of all that you are experiencing. Based on this, you will judge whether your symptoms have augmented. Also see whether your symptoms are due to any odour, food habits, exposure to bright light, and so on. Because these are migraine triggers.
In general following are the migraine symptoms:
- Throbbing pain typically occurs on one side near the temples, forehead, and eyes.
- Sensitivity to light, sound, or mild exertion, such as climbing the stairs.
- Nausea, vomiting, or vision problems.
- The pain can be disabling, forcing people to miss work or other activities.
If you experience a few or more of the above symptoms, then consider seeking treatment for migraines.
You should also consider seeing a neurologist or migraine specialist if you:
- Are having headache after severe fall or an accident or head injury.
- Have developed a headache which was not there before.
- Are experiencing headache after age 50.
- Have headache after getting up, bending down, standing up, exercising, doing intense physical activities, sexual activity, sneezing and coughing.
- Have regular headache with a very strong personal history, but quite recently the episodes of attack have changed or new symptoms have manifested.
Also look out for whether your migraines are due to the following migraine triggers:
- Lack of food or sleep
- Aged, fermented, and stored foods
- Hormonal changes
For keeping a track of your migraine symptoms, keep a migraine diary and write every details of your headache including the above triggers if any.
Your neurologist primarily diagnoses migraines based on your symptoms, history, triggers and episodes of migraines. However, at times, may order brain scan to rule out other causes of headaches – such as bleeding in the brain, brain aneurism and brain tumours.
Calculating Your Headache Burden
Your doctor may just want to know your headache burden prior to beginning treatment. It is just to know the magnitude of effect migraines have in your life. In simple terms – a general questionnaire that covers day-to-day activities and the ones that you have missed due to migraines. The activity can be anything including your work, family or any other leisure activity that you missed due to migraines.
Pain relieving drugs or anti-inflammatory drugs including aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, etc and other drugs that have been specially formulated to treat migraines can be prescribed. However, doctors usually don’t prescribe such medicines for long as overuse can make the condition worst and may lead to some other health issues such as gastrointestinal problems.
Triptans, the most common medication prescribed for migraine headaches, are most effective when taken early in an attack. People with high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and other conditions may not be able to take triptans. And because of possible serious drug interactions, you should talk to your doctor about other medications you take, such as antidepressants or antiseizure drugs.
Your doctor may prescribe these medicines if tryptans don’t provide any relief. Ergotamines are available as tablets, nasal sprays or injections.
Understanding whether your treatment is working is important
According to the number of headaches that you have and the measures you took to treat those as instructed by your doctor – just evaluate whether you are getting any relief that you need. If not, then ask your doctor about your experiences with the medicines that you had. Your doctor will suggest altering the medicines, doses, or the way in which you should take medicines – should you take medicines two hours before migraine attack or so.
Limits of Medication Use
Overuse of medicines can lead to more severe or rebound headaches – which are difficult to treat. Therefore, ask your doctor as to how long should you continue using the prescribed medicines or when should you consider discontinuing or tapering medicines to get rid of your chronic headaches. Pain medicines containing narcotics should be taken according to the direction of your neurologist because they can be habit-forming
Treatment: Preventive Medication
Your doctor may instruct you to take migraine medicines regularly if migraines are very severe and frequent. Drugs used to treat high blood pressure can be prescribed for this purpose. They include beta blockers and calcium channel blockers. Several types of antidepressants can also be used to prevent migraine, as well as anticonvulsants.