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Migraine Prevention and Treatment, the Natural Way

June is National Migraine Awareness Month. Migraines differ from headaches and can be disabling. A migraine is a neurological event and it often involves other parts of the body than the head. Not all migraine sufferers have headaches, although headache can be a symptom. A migraine is a disabling neurological disease with different symptoms and different treatment approaches compared to other headache disorders. The American Migraine Foundation estimates that at least 39 million Americans live with migraines, but because many people do not get a diagnosis or the treatment, the actual number is probably higher. Head pain can be moderate or severe and often intense. The pain may be hard to endure and may be unbearable. Some symptoms include:

  • The pain may be on one side of the head or both. It could be in the front or in the back or around the eyes and behind cheeks.

  • The pain causes a throbbing, pounding, or pulsating sensation.

  • The pain gets worse with physical activity or any movement.

  • You experience nausea and/or vomiting.

  • You are sensitive to light, noise and/or smells.

  • Your pain is severe enough to make you miss school, work or other activities - or it keeps you from being the best version of yourself when you do those activities.

  • Your migraine attack can last anywhere from four hours to several days.

Some individuals have migraine with aura. The most common type of aura is visual (flashes of light, blind spots, shapes or bright spots). An aura can also cause blurred vision or loss of vision. Typically, an aura occurs before the head pain of the attack begins, and fully resolves in an hour or less. Migraine can be classified as episodic or chronic. People with episodic migraine have 14 or fewer headache days per month. Individuals with chronic migraine experience more than 15 headache days per month (for three or more months) with at least eight that include migraine features from above. In some, episodic migraine can become chronic, which may happen if it’s not recognized and treated correctly.