Migraine is not just a headache. People with migraine have severe headaches and are often very nauseous, sometimes accompanied by vomiting. Fortunately, there are good treatment options!
What happens with migraine:
In migraine there is a disruption in the brain between the cooperation of blood vessels and nerve pathways. It leads to a very severe headache, usually on one side of the head. This may be accompanied by nausea and vomiting. The pain increases with exertion, bright light and loud noise. From about an hour to half an hour before the attack, some people experience certain tingling, light flickering, shivering, poor vision, yawning and other symptoms. These are called auras. The attack can last 4 to 72 hours, but often the attack is over after a day. The frequency of attacks can also differ per person. Some people have an attack once a year and some every week.
Not all symptoms have to occur, nor does everyone suffer from auras or side effects.
- headache comes in attacks
- intense, often one-sided pain
- worsening with exertion, bright light and loud noise
- duration from 4 to 72 hours
possible side effects:
- difficulty concentrating
- deja vu
- cold extremities, chills, sweating
- distortion of vision and hearing
- temporary acceleration of heart rate, followed by slow heart rate
- to yawn
Some people can sense an attack coming a few days in advance. This is due to certain signs and is also called the warning phase. Not everyone has this but possible signs could be:
- days to hours in advance
- runny nose/nasal cold
- mood changes
- retain moisture
- 2 to 3 hours in advance
- hypersensitivity to stimuli such as light, noise, etc…
- to be cold
- want peace
- excessive fitness
- feelings of hunger
- shortly before
- extreme fatigue
- to yawn
- fluid loss
- hypersensitive smell, taste, hearing
- change in heart rate
- look pale
Paracetamol can be tried first. This often does not help enough or only helps with mild attacks and you can try ibuprofen. Quite a few people benefit from this. If these remedies do not help, the doctor can prescribe triptans such as:
- sumatriptan (imigran)
- rizatriptan (maxalt)
- zomig (zolmitriptan)
- fromirex (frovatriptan)
- naramig (naratriptan)
These products are available in tablets, nasal sprays, suppositories, melting tablets and injections. It is important with this and most medications that it is not used too often. If it is used regularly more than twice a week, a painkiller-dependent headache may develop.
In addition to the pain, the doctor can also prescribe something for nausea. This can be in the form of tablets and suppositories. What can be given is domperidone or primperan. When taking a painkiller in combination with an anti-nausea drug, the anti-nausea drug should be taken first. This makes the painkiller better absorbed.
If you have 2 or more attacks per month, your doctor can prescribe a preventive measure. These are often beta blockers. These remedies are not officially made for migraines, but they seem to help some people prevent attacks.
In addition to medication, it is important to rest, a cold washcloth can be nice. In some people, certain foods trigger an attack, so it is good to look into this. Too much or too little sleep and alcohol can also trigger an attack in some people. It is important to find out for yourself what you are sensitive to, so that you can try to limit the attacks as much as possible.