At school, probably we have all used the excuse of a headache to evade studies. At times it was genuine and at others just a fake one. Some teachers bought it others did not, depending on how one really was or could act out the pain, for it is not something one can measure – nor is there a sure shot cure, as the cause may differ from person to person.
Headaches cause pain in the head, face, or upper neck, and can vary in frequency and intensity. But the worst form of a headache could be a migraine, an extremely painful primary headache disorder. Migraines usually produce symptoms that are more intense and debilitating than headaches. Incidentally, some types of migraines do not cause head pain.
People with migraine may experience recurring symptoms that doctors call episodes or attacks. Headaches are only one symptom of migraines, and they can range in severity. Migraine can cause intense, throbbing headaches that last anywhere from a few hours to several days. A migraine headache usually affects one side of the head, but some people experience pain on both sides. A migraine episode can occur in four distinct phases, though not everyone experiences every phase.
The premonitory phase is also called the pre-headache or prodromal phase. It includes non-painful symptoms that occur hours or days before the headache arrives. Premonitory phase symptoms can include: Unexplainable mood changes, food cravings, stiffness of the neck, frequent yawning, constipation or diarrhea, sensitivity to light, sound, or smells etc.
The Aura phase refers to sensory disturbances that occur before or during a migraine attack. Auras can affect a person’s vision, touch, or speech. Visual auras can cause the following symptoms in one or both eyes: Flashing lights, zigzagging lines, blurred vision and blind spots that expand over time.
Sensory auras cause numbness or tingling that starts in the arm and radiates to the face. Motor auras affect a person’s ability to communicate and think clearly. Motor auras include: Slurred or jumbled speech, difficulty understanding what others say, difficulty in writing, having trouble thinking clearly.
The headache phase can range from mild to severe. People who have a severe migraine headache may need to seek emergency medical treatment. Physical activity and exposure to light, sound, and smells worsen the pain. People can have migraine episodes without developing a headache.
The Postdrome phase occurs after the headache subsides. People may feel exhausted, confused, or generally unwell during the postdrome phase. This phase can last anywhere from a few hours or several days. Migraine falls into several different categories depending on the symptoms. Just like migraines can happen with or with a headache, so also it can happen with or without an aura.
Then there is Abdominal migraine that usually affects children between the ages of 3 and 10 years old causing abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. People who have this type of migraine can develop a mild headache or no headache at all.
Finally, Hemiplegic migraine that can cause temporary paralysis before or during the headache. Other symptoms of hemiplegic migraines include: Vertigo (dizziness), a piercing or stabbing sensation in the head, vision problems, difficulty speaking or swallowing, trouble moving one side of the body.
Researchers and doctors have identified several factors associated with higher risks of migraines. These include: being female, having a family history of migraines, mood disorders, such as depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorders, sleep disorders etc.
Effective treatments for headache disorders require timely and accurate diagnoses. Unfortunately, accurately diagnosing headache disorders presents a significant challenge for individuals and their doctors. A doctor can diagnose headache disorders, including migraine, based on an individual’s symptoms and medical and family history. They may refer a person to a neurologist, who specializes in nervous system disorders. While there is no cure for headaches or migraine, people can use medication and lifestyle changes to treat their symptoms and help prevent future episodes.
Treatments for migraine attacks:
Principal points: Liv 1, 2, 3, GB 7, 20, UB 18, 19, St 8 (↓all)
(i) If their is obstruction in collaterals of brain: GV 16, GB 4, 20, Tw 5 (↓all)
(ii) If phlegm is causing obstructions and migraine: UB 21, CV 12, St 40, P 6, 7 (↓all)
(iii) If there is stasis of blood in brain causing migraine: UB 18, Sp 6, 10 (↓all)
Principal points for males:
Tw 5 (L) ↑, GB 41, ↑ Liv 2, 3 (R) ↓
Principal points for females:
Tw 5 (R) ↑, GB 4 ↑ Liv 2, 3 (L) ↓
Another very effective treatment of migraine is liver yin deficiency, yang rising: Liv 3, GB 20, 38, 43, UB 2, ↓
Liv 8, K 3, Sp 6 ↑ Treatment is given on the side of the migraine headache.
(The Free Press Journal along with the Lions Club of Mumbai ACTION would like to guide people on how to treat self through non-invasive, therapies like Sujok, Ayurvedic Acupressure and Mudra Yoga. This is complementary and will not override the treatment given by doctor. Please share your problems by writing to us at firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com. You can also share the problem on WhatsApp at 9323178565.)