Many people think a pounding, eye-shutting headache is a migraine in disguise – and that may be the case. But many headaches and pain conditions, including a migraine, have overlapping symptoms that can mimic one another. Identifying the migraine, and knowing its warning signs, helps your healthcare provider make an accurate diagnosis and offer treatment options. Ketamine may help.
According to The American Migraine Foundation, migraines are more prevalent than asthma and diabetes combined, affecting more than 36 million people in the U.S. These kinds of headaches cost American businesses billions each year in terms of lost work and productivity.
Know the Risk Factors
It’s hard to know who may experience migraines and who may avoid it, but there are risk factors that raise your chances, including any of the following:
- Genetics. If you have a blood relative who gets a migraine headache, there’s an 80 percent chance you will, too.
- Migraine headaches affect women more than men, particularly between the ages of 15 years old and 55 years old. This could be due to hormonal influences.
- Stress levels and nicotine use.
Types Of Migraines
There are many migraines, some of which can be treated in your own home, while others require more intensive care. Some migraine symptoms can even be reduced in severity and frequency by ketamine therapy. What are the types of migraines you should know about?
- Migraine with aura, also referred to as classic migraine, is a recurrent headache that attacks after or during sensory disturbances. These turbulences can include light flashes, blind spots, and additional vision variations or tingles in your face or hand.
- Migraine without aura is the most widespread kind of migraine. Aura is a klaxon for a migraine. It’s something that usually affects eyesight. If you have a migraine without aura, there won’t be a courtesy announcement that a migraine attack is imminent.
- “Chronic migraine is defined as having at least 15 headache days a month, with at least eight days of having headaches with migraine features, for more than three months. Chronic headaches begin as less frequent headache episodes that gradually change into a more frequent headache pattern.”
- Migraine with brainstem aura is migraine-like and includes aura symptoms initiating from the base of the brain (at the brainstem) or both sides of your brain (cerebral hemispheres) simultaneously.
- Vestibular migraine. Migraine headaches are a well-known neurological condition. Even though some migraines are categorized by a modest to severe throbbing or pounding headache, vestibular migraine might or might not involve headaches combined with vestibular symptoms like vertigo, nausea, imbalance, and vomiting.
- Abdominal migraine is most often observed in children. This condition, presented by stomach discomfort, nausea, and vomiting, can lead to school absences, emotional suffering, and an interruption in everyday life.
- Hemiplegic migraine is a rare illness where affected people experience a migraine headache combined with weakness to one side of their body (also called hemiplegia). Affected people are documented as suffering migraine with aura.
- Menstrual migraine is primarily triggered by estrogen, the female sex hormone that explicitly regulates variations in the menstrual cycle. When estrogen and progesterone levels change, women can be more susceptible to headaches. Women on birth control pills can suffer from more frequent menstrual migraine attacks because oral contraceptives affect estrogen levels.
- Cyclic vomiting syndrome is an illness that triggers recurring incidents of nausea, vomiting, and tiredness. This condition is diagnosed mainly in young children, but it can affect anyone regardless of age.
Fortunately, migraine symptoms can be treated in many ways, including ketamine.
Diagnosis & Treatment
To diagnose a migraine, a healthcare provider will document your medical history, not just of headaches but that of your family, too. Also, your clinician will seek to connect any record of your migraine-related symptoms, talking about things like severity and frequency of headaches, triggers such as foods or stressors, medications or illness, your feelings before, during, and afterward, and many others. No single test can diagnose a migraine, but procedures like magnetic resonance imaging, computerized tomography scans, and electroencephalograms may help.
Your healthcare provider may recommend abortive or preventive medicine, medicine to relieve pain symptoms, lifestyle changes, or ketamine therapy.
If you experience severe and debilitating headaches requiring hours or days to recover, you may be suffering from an extreme kind of headache called a migraine. It can result in physical and psychological symptoms and disrupt all facets of your life but can often be overcome with treatments like ketamine infusion therapy.