Friday, January 27, 2023

What Does Migraines Feel Like

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Here Is How I Describe My Migraines So People Understand

What Does a Migraine Feel Like?

When I Know One Is Coming

  • I can begin the day feeling like one side of my head has a pressure in it, like something is swelling or even intense enough that it already feels ready to burst.
  • My neck may hurt into my jaw and my eyes feel the pressure as well.
  • The sunshine on the way to work feels like the burning light of 1,000 suns and increases my pain more.
  • Moving my head sends shockwaves of pain through me and I become nauseous by the time I arrive at my desk.
  • Perfume or other intense scents make the pain worse.

The Pain Is Different Than All Others

  • The pain takes on different levels and can begin to feel like a nerve is also involved.
  • Imagine a crushing, pressurized pain combined with that weird funny bone pain that you get from nerve involvement but this encompasses your head , your eyes, and parts of your face, jaw and neck.
  • The pain can be so severe that I cannot hold down food and I find myself feeling like it will never stop like maybe eventually this will kill me.
  • I feel completely hopeless and desperate.
  • My vision can become blurry and I see flashes of light.
  • Thinking clearly is difficult, talking is a huge effort and carrying on with life is beyond challenging.

This can all last for at least three days often five.

What To Do If You Have A Migraine

If a migraine is left untreated, it can go from mild to severe and last up to three days. As such, it is advisable to seek medical attention upon the onset of a migraine.

It may also be beneficial to keep a migraine journal. Documenting your activities before and during migraine episodes may help doctors identify your migraine triggers.

I Would Rather Have A Combination Of A Stomach Bug And The Flu For A Month Straight Over A Migraine Cluster Manny 27

I started getting migraines the first year I got out of college. I officially received a diagnosis a year later when I finally went to the doctor. I was staring at my computer screen and I remember a strange feeling, like my neck was tensing up and my vision had a strange crack in it. I now know that this is whats called an aura.

A migraine feels like someone grabbed a hot rod and pressed it against one side of your head. Its a pulsating pain that you feel with every heartbeat mixed with intense nausea and dizziness. The worst part is that you never know when its going to happen or how intense its going to be when it does. Ive had migraines during work, on dates, in class, and on vacation, and it always ruins the day.

To put it in perspective, I would rather have a combination of a stomach bug and the flu for a month straight over a migraine cluster. At least with the stomach bug and the flu you know what to expect and can mitigate that.

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What Is The Prognosis For People With Migraines

Migraines are unique to each individual. Likewise, how migraines are managed is also unique. The best outcomes are usually achieved by learning and avoiding personal migraine triggers, managing symptoms, practicing preventive methods, following the advice of your healthcare provider and reporting any significant changes as soon as they occur.

When To Worry About A Headache

These Illustrations Show What It Feels Like To Have A Migraine ...

You can take care of many types of headaches by yourself, and your doctor can give you medication to control most of the tougher headaches. But some headaches call for prompt medical care. Here are some warning signs for when you should worry about headaches:

  • Headaches that first develop after age 50
  • A major change in the pattern of your headaches
  • An unusually severe headache
  • Head pain that increases with coughing or movement
  • Headaches that get steadily worse
  • Changes in personality or mental function
  • Headaches that are accompanied by fever, stiff neck, confusion, decreased alertness or memory, or neurological symptoms such as visual disturbances, slurred speech, weakness, numbness, or seizures
  • Headaches that are accompanied by a painful red eye
  • Headaches that are accompanied by pain and tenderness near the temples
  • Headaches after a blow to the head
  • Headaches that prevent normal daily activities
  • Headaches that come on abruptly, especially if they wake you up
  • Headaches in patients with cancer or impaired immune systems

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The Phases Of Migraine


Also known as preheadache or the premonitory phase, prodrome can mark the beginning of a migraine attack. This phase can last several hours or may even occur over several days.

Most people with migraine will experience prodrome, but not necessarily before every migraine attack. If a person with migraine is experiencing prodrome, his or her care team can study their symptoms and patterns to guide a treatment plan that may lessen the severity of the oncoming headache. During this phase, taking medication, minimizing/avoiding other trigger factors , and practicing mindfulness meditation, relaxation therapy, or other biobehavioral techniques, can even prevent headache in some cases. Prodrome symptoms vary from person to person but can include changes in mood, from feelings of depression or irritability to difficulty focusing. Other symptoms may include fatigue, sensitivity to light and sound, insomnia, nausea, constipation or diarrhea, and muscle stiffness, especially in the neck and shoulders. Symptoms that are especially unique to the prodrome phase of migraine include yawning, cravings for certain foods, and frequent urination.




Reviewed for accuracy by the American Migraine Foundations subject matter experts, headache specialists and medical advisers with deep knowledge and training in headache medicine. to read about our editorial board members.

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Who Gets Migraines And When

Migraine generally emerges in early life, particularly during adolescence, says Stark. But theres usually someone around to sympathise roughly 90 per cent of migraineurs are related to someone with it. Take Griffiths family, for example. Not only did her mother suffer debilitating migraines, the kind that landed her sporadically in hospital, but both her son and daughter do, too. And I only have two kids so thats bad luck, isnt it? says Griffiths. My son started getting them when he was five.

Before puberty, its a fairly even split between the genders. Then things shift about twice as many women have migraine as men, suggesting hormones play a role in the condition, too. In any year, theres about 20 per cent of women and 6 per cent of men suffering from migraine, says Stark. But if you look over their lifetime, youre getting closer to 50 per cent for women .

Thats because the frequency or severity of migraines often fluctuates throughout your life Griffiths recalls how her sons migraines were much more intense in childhood while her daughters emerged in adolescence and continued into adulthood. In women, migraines can flare up for the first time as menopause hits, or disappear entirely. But its generally worse during childbearing years, says Stark.

Its almost as though theres a migraine circuit in all of us, Stark says, one more easily tripped in some than others.

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It Can Be So Distracting And Painful That It’s Almost Impossible To Think Or Carry On A Conversation Amanda 27

I’ve always had frequent headaches, but the migraines started around age 22. The first symptom I feel is a severe, piercing pain right between my eyebrows or sometimes what feels like behind my eye sockets. It can be so distracting and painful that it’s almost impossible to think or carry on a conversation. Then, my sensitivity to light and smell become increasingly worse, which sometimes will lead to nausea. Often, my migraines seem to come out of nowhere and advance very quickly.

One distinct memory I have is getting a migraine right before a date. At the time, I was in my apartment finishing getting ready when all of a sudden I keeled over and had a piercing pain in my forehead. I had to turn off all the lights and lay down on my side, practicing slow breathing to try to relieve the pain. I had to cancel the date less than an hour before we were supposed to meet, which was definitely embarrassing, and I lied there on my bed for hours.

Migraines Can Cause Incapacitating Pain

What A Vestibular Migraine Attack Feels Like | vestibular migraine constant symptoms attacks

Migraines are the sixth most common cause of disability in the world, per the February 2017 review. People with migraines in the 2017 Eli Lilly survey reported their worst migraine pain was higher than that of childbirth, broken bones, and kidney stones.

They also said their migraine attacks frequently interfere with work productivity and advancement, attending important events, and spending time with family and friends, resulting in the addition of more stress, which is a migraine trigger, per the January 2019 review.

For Eileen Brewer, 40, from Columbia, Maryland, the first migraine attack came when she was 5. After that, migraines came just occasionally, once a month sometimes, or once or twice a year, Brewer said.

By the time Brewer turned 15, though, she was having 15 a month. I started to miss school because of the pain and not being able to see, Brewer said. A lot of time, Id go to school anyway but couldnt see out of my eye because of the flashing lights. Brewer estimated shed missed 60 or more days of her sophomore year.

As an adult, different medications and strategies helped, but she hadnt had any treatment for seven years because shed been either pregnant or breastfeeding. There are some days it is excruciating. All I am is pain. I spend a lot of nights sleeping on the bathroom floor because Im sick to my stomach, and my head hurts, Brewer said. Other days, I can think around the pain.

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Everything Feels Like It Takes Double The Amount Of Effort Danielle 22

My migraines feel like someone is using my brain as a drum. They happen on one side of my head, as migraines do, and it makes it hard to see, concentrate, and sometimes even speak. Everything feels like it takes double the amount of effort to do when I have a migraine.

“A couple of weeks ago, I had a migraine for three consecutive days. It’s the kind of pain that inhibits you from being capable of doing literally anything. I couldn’t think, read, or watch TV. The only thing that would help was sleeping because I couldn’t feel it. I would go to sleep with a migraine and pray that when I woke up it would be gone. It’s the worst feeling waking up from a migraine.

How Does A Migraine Feel

A migraine without aura or common migraine causes intense, pulsating, or throbbing headaches, usually on one side of your head, that can last anywhere from a few hours to three days. There are no symptoms before the migraine attack.

A migraine with aura is characterized by sensory disturbances which occur before or during the migraine attack. Many people describe migraine pain as steady, throbbing, pulsating, pounding and debilitating.

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Cluster Headache Vs Migraine

Just like migraines, cluster headaches affect one side of the head and are incredibly painful.

But unlike migraines, cluster headaches come on suddenly with a piercing pain that feels like someone stabbed you in the eye or temple with a knitting needle. Cluster headaches can also result in a stuffy nose and teary eyes.

Migraine pain usually starts with some type of signal, such as a flashing light in your visual field or a light aura. While cluster headaches can resolve quickly , migraines can last for days.

What Does A Migraine Feel Like

What Migraines Really Feel Like, From People Who Get Them

When one talks about migraines then it is seen as a severe headache which has a repeated occurrence. Such headaches last for a few hours to a few days and are usually accompanied by vomiting, a feeling of nausea and sensitivity to either light or sound. Such types of headaches have a throbbing pain and can be felt on one side of the brain. Many times they are misdiagnosed and termed as caused due to tension or sinus but that is not the case. The severity of a migraine can disrupt your daily activity. Their occurrence can range from being on a daily basis to as rare as once in a year. The age group that experiences such headaches are from the age 25- 55. Teens and children can also suffer from it. In comparison to men, women are more likely to suffer from migraine. One in sixteen men endure migraine and one in five women. There are many kinds of migraine are following are a few of them listed-

Migraine that is accompanied with aura This form of migraine is found in 1/5 of the people suffering from this disease. Auras appear during a migraine and can occur after the headache is over.

Patients see zigzag lines, at times spots or even flashing lights. Included is the feeling a strange taste in the mouth, numbness, difficulty in speaking, smelling a funny odor or even experience ringing in the ears.

Chronic Migraine Also called Transformed Migraine is difficult to treat and becomes a continuous headache. Also called tension headache or coexisting migraine.

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Should You Go To Work The Day After A Migraine

A migraine, and the subsequent hangover, will feel different for everyone. So, this might be a personal decision. There are no risks attached to working after a migraine.

But, you may find that your hangover symptoms are just as debilitating as the headache phase, as research suggests.

In that case, you may find it helpful to reach out to your health team for a note to excuse you from work and take an extra day off, if at all possible.

If you do decide to get some work done, try to take it easy on yourself.

Also, consider letting your team know whats going on, as the symptoms of a migraine hangover can have a direct impact on your ability to focus, which may impact your productivity.

How long a migraine postdrome last may be different for everyone. Typically, it lasts up to 48 hours.

One older study found that for of study participants, the postdrome phase was over within 6 hours of the headache pain going away.

Research shows that the postdrome length doesnt change with migraine medication or the severity of your migraine, so medication may not have a noticeable effect on a migraine hangover.

Still, its recommended to continue with your migraine treatment regime and let the symptoms run their course, while you take good care of yourself.

If your postdrome symptoms last longer than 2 days, consider following up with your primary care physician.

Symptoms Of A Migraine

If you have a migraine, you may experience recurring symptoms referred to as episodes or attacks. Headaches are the primary symptoms of migraines and can range in severity from mild to intense.

A migraine headache often affects one side of your head, but it can also affect both sides or shift sides. A migraine attack may occur in four distinct phases. Not everyone who gets migraines experiences all four phases. The phases are:

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It’s As If There’s A Glass Shattered In Front Of Me And I Can’t See Cory 26

I remember having my first migraine when I was in fifth grade, but then didn’t have one again until I was around 22. Since migraines run in my family, and I come from a family of doctors, I was able to sort of self-diagnose. I went to a neurologist, who classified it as a classic migraine.

The first symptom is a disturbing aura that takes over my vision. It’s as if there’s a glass shattered in front of me and I can’t see. My vision literally disappears or I see a psychedelic pattern. That lasts for about 20 minutes. Then, the headache comes on one side of my forehead. Its literally the worst pain you can imagine I have a really high pain tolerance. Anywhere from 4 to 5 hours later I will get really nauseous and then vomit. After I puke, I usually feel better, and almost deliriously happy that it’s over.

I got three in one day when I was on vacation in Hawaii. That was horrible because I didn’t have my medication with me. I was in so much pain, just weeping in the hotel room like a baby and barfing my brains outor trying to, at least. And I couldn’t look at the sunset or scenery because it looked like my aura.

The First Time It Happened I Thought Id Been Roofied Ilana 29

What Does a Migraine Feel Like? – The Excedrin® Migraine Experience

Ocular migraines are like seeing the world in slow motion. The first time it happened I thought Id been roofied. I moved my hand in front of my face and there were sixteen hands trailing in front of me. It was bizarre, especially since I wasnt in pain like you would be with a normal migraine. Migraines are slow buildinglike a pressure in the back of your head that gets worse and worse each day until it feels like your eye will pop out of their sockets. And nothing makes that pressure go away. Migraines can feel like someone punched me in the eye, or maybe like I held my breath for too long, or like Im being held upside down and all the blood is rushing to my head.

One incident with my ocular migraines was at a park on a sunny day. I was walking and suddenly this dark figure walked into my line of vision and out. It a black shape of a person, but I was totally alone. Id only ever seen small shapes, like balls of light or dark, but this looked like a man. It totally creeped me out.

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