I have suffered with severe headaches for several years and can not seem to find out why. I have a headache every day, but, of course, some days are almost unbearable! I've been to doctors and some say migraines, some say definitely not. So, how does one tell???
I have the same problems. I get light sensitivity, muscle weakness, stiffness, the pain is often behind one eye, pressure on the eyes help relieve it slightly, it is the worse pain I ever feel, and I often lose conciousness. Im sure you can look you the official symptoms on the internet, but these are my main ones.
I do have a headache most of the time too though :(
Migraine is a specific condition, with a set of symptoms that are unlike other conditions. A neurologist can diagnose it for you, but here is a set of basic symptoms that he or she will look for:
--Severe pain that localizes behind one or both eyes
--Extreme light sensitivity
--Sense of pressure around eyes
--Nausea and vomiting
--Haze or visual aura around images at onset of headache, can last throughout headache
--Other sensory disruptions, such as detecting unusual odor prior to headache
--Sufferer can track headache to known trigger, such as cheese, wine, light, stress, MSG, or other sensitivities
--Pain does not respond to typical pain relievers, such as Tylenol or aspirin
Everyone who suffers from migraine headaches do not have all these symptoms, and everyone is different. But those are the most typical. After the dr. rules out other conditions, he can make a diagnosis and prescribe certain migraine meds that will help relieve your pain, and help to uncover what your particular triggers are so you can avoid them.
There is a great book out on headaches. It is by a neurologist and it is all about caused treatments. etc. We got the book and my husband eliminated all the triggers. Started juicing and lost some weight. He feels much better and rairly has headaches.
As for the person taking more than 5 times a month, the reason it is not good is that you can cause rebound headaches. Which means the pills can cause you to have headaches if you take them too many times per month. Please get that book and you will learn alot about them and how to deal with them. Some of you all can get rid of the headaches just by removing your triggers.
Remember there are things you can do. I know it is hard to deal with but you will feel better with more information and then you can make changes to start getting rid of your headaches. also, do some research on natural things to relieve the headaches
The pain of a migraine beats in rhythm with your heartbeat.
It hurts in one specific, narrowly defined area of your head.
It may or may not be preceded or accompanied by auras: flashing lights, strange smells, sensitivities to light & sound, nausea, loss of peripheral vision, etc.
If you're a female, it may accompany your menstrual cycle.
If you're a male, they may be cluster headaches, which also affect only a narrow area of the head, but do not beat in rhythm with your heartbeat, which is how you tell the difference between a cluster headache and a migraine.
If you're taking painkillers of any kind, stop all of them immediately: you may be having rebound headaches, which occur when you take painkillers for headaches every day, even some that you believe are innocuous such as aspirin, tylenol, etc. Stop all painkillers, even herbal ones like willow bark, for one month. If the daily headaches stop, then you were experiencing rebound headaches caused from taking painkillers for your headaches. Your body became addicted to the painkillers (yes, you can get addicted to aspirin) and gave you a headache to get more.
If you have a sinus headache, bend forward: the pain should immediately increase, and it will be located in your forehead, cheekbones directly under your eyes, and upper lip right under your nose. These are the locations of your sinus cavities. For sinus headaches, don't take aspirin etc. or you'll get rebound headaches, try hot showers to clear the sinuses, sprinkle some essential oil of eucalyptus on a tissue and inhale it (it will open up your sinus passages in a few minutes and take away the headache), and try warm, wet compresses on your sinuses to break up the congestion. If you smoke, stop!
Another excellent headache healer for headaches of all kinds, even migraines (from which I've suffered all my life) is essential oil of lavender. Put a few drops on a tissue and inhale until headache is gone (3-5 minutes).
Essential oils are available from health food stores and some pharmacies.
As you can tell, in my life, I've had every type of headache there is, and often, unwittingly made them worse (rebounders).
Hope this information helps and that you feel better soon.
I have the same problem, and gave up trying to define my headaches a while ago. My neuro calls them cluster migraines as they have symptoms of both... clusters because the pain is localized by my eye and I'll be stuffy/teary on that side... migraines because of the pain level and length of time, and light/sound sensitivity . They last longer than either one "should" (never less than 3 days, occasionally for a week or longer).
I've been told that there's no such thing as a non-tension headache that doesn't fall into these categories. I emphatically disagree, just from my own experience. In the end, it's about getting the pain to go away. Try treatments based on all symptoms even if you don't hit 10 out of 10 categories.
I've been seeing a craniosacral therapist for about a year now, it's the only thing that has had lasting results. She doesn't care what type of headaches I'm having, just treats the pain.
I am sorry you are in so much pain. I have had Migraines for most of my life.
Migraines are always on one side of the head, usually in the temple area or around one eye. Some people get an aura or sparkling lights before the headache, some do not. You usually have nausea, dizzy spells and blurred vision,
among others. Bright lights make the pain worse.. Over the counter pain meds do not work, neither do most prescription meds. Both my Dr. and Phammacist told me the best meds for Migraines are: Fioricet for mild headaches and Fioricet with Codeine for severe ones. Also the triptan meds work well, such as Maxalt or Imetrix. There are also
blood pressure meds that may prevent you from getting them to often such as
Propanolol and Atenolol. There are many things that may trigger Migraines such as, Chocolate, Citrus fruit or juice,
meats with nitrates in them like Hot Dogs, Bacon Smoked meats, and most lunch meats. Also things that have a strong smell like perfume, cleaning products and paint. See if you get a headache after using any of these things. Do you have any of the symptions I mentioned, or is your headache always only on one side? If yes, you should see a Neurologist, they are the best ones to diagnose headaches. I hoped this helped some. Good luck and let us know how you are doing.
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