If you have ever experienced a migraine, then you know how debilitating the pain and discomfort can be. If you are unsure if you have ever had a migraine, then you probably have not – lucky you.
What Exactly Is a Migraine?
There are numerous types of headaches that you can experience, but a migraine is incredibly intense and can last anywhere from hours to days. It is often preceded by an aura, which usually consists of strange visual disturbances.
A migraine differs from a traditional headache in that it occurs in stages and can last for several days, often affecting a person’s daily life.
These are some of the most common migraine symptoms:
- Pain (usually concentrated on one side of the head, but can be on both)
- Throbbing or pulsating pain
- Sensitivity to light and sound, even to smell and touch in some cases
- Nausea and vomiting
- Numbness or a tingling sensation
There are various theories out there as to what exactly causes migraines — and they may all be right in different circumstances. A common belief is that they stem from changes in the brain that affects how the nerves communicate. They are also thought to be somewhat genetic, be caused by hormonal changes or by environmental factors.
What Can Trigger a Migraine?
Both physical and mental stress can cause migraines. Constant mental stress is probably the most common cause of migraines, and frustratingly, it is also the most difficult to control. Migraines do not usually start during moments of intense stress, their symptoms typically start to appear afterward once people start to unwind.
Alcohol is a migraine trigger and usually causes two types of migraines: an attack within a few hours or a delayed hangover migraine. Alcohol is a diuretic, causing you to urinate more fluid than you are taking in — which leads to dehydration. Dehydration can lead to headaches and even migraines (if you are prone to them).
Alcohol also relaxes your blood vessels which leads to increased blood flow to the brain. This can also contribute to headaches, and even spur on a migraine if you are susceptible to them.
If you do not eat for more than 16 hours (or less for some people) you may develop a fasting headache. However, if you are someone who suffers from migraines and you are fasting, then the act of fasting can be a substantial migraine trigger. Even delayed or irregular meals can cause migraines in people who suffer from them.
When you fast, your blood-glucose levels drop, also known as hypoglycemia. This is believed by many to be a common migraine trigger. Fasting can also release stress hormones which can play a role in the development of migraines as well.
The weather outside can have a direct impact on how you feel and for some can even cause a migraine to surface. Changes in the weather and shifts in barometric pressure are both common migraine triggers.
Weather changes can cause imbalances in the chemicals in your brain, which can spur on a migraine. These changes may also worsen a regular headache for those who are prone to migraines.
Common Weather-Related Migraine Triggers
- Barometric pressure changes
- Windy or stormy weather
- Intense sunlight or sun glare
- Excessive heat or cold
- Dry air
How Can Kilian Upper Cervical Chiropractors Help?
If you suffer from headaches or migraines, you have likely attempted an assortment of treatment options. There are a lot of remedies out there to help alleviate pain during a migraine — and this is understandably important. Long-term, a focus on prevention and treatment can make a world of difference to your quality of life.
If you are in the Aldergrove area and are suffering from migraines or any type of headache, contact Kilian Chiropractors today to schedule your free consultation. Let us get you on the path to a healthier and happier life!