4 Facts that Show Migraines Are Undertreated & Underdiagnosed

Facts that Show Migraines Are Undertreated and Underdiagnosed

If you suffer from migraines, you are far from alone. In fact, about 12% of adults and 10% of minors are dealing with this neurological disorder on a regular basis. Additionally, there are about 4 million people dealing with chronic migraines which means the patient has 15 or more migraine days per month. Some even deal with daily migraines. This leads to disability for about 20% of chronic migraine patients.

The problem with all of those statistics is that they may be only a fraction of the number of people who actually suffer from migraines due to how underdiagnosed this condition is. Yes, there may be more migraineurs not getting a diagnosis and proper care.

Of course, for those who have received an official diagnosis, this doesn’t mean a person is getting the right care. We’re going to look at 4 shocking facts that reveal just how underdiagnosed and undertreated that migraines are. Then we will look at a way to get natural, drug-free help for the suffering of migraines that is providing hope for many.

#1 Less than 50% of Migraine Sufferers Get an Official Diagnosis

Why do people struggle to get diagnosed with migraines? First of all, migraines are often mistaken for bad headaches. Some people still have the mistaken idea that a severe headache is all a migraine is. If more people recognized this as the neurological condition that it is, they might seek care. In fact, migraines are in the same category of disease as dementia, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.

The other major issue is how difficult general practitioners find it to diagnose the disorder. It requires taking multiple symptoms into account since migraines are rarely just a headache. Plus, some episodes don’t even present with a headache. If your migraines primarily only involve visual symptoms, you may find it tougher to get a diagnosis. Also, some physicians miss telltale signs of the condition such as neck pain that occurs before or during the headache.

#2 Many Migraineurs Don’t Go to the Doctor

Again, this goes back to the misconception that migraines are just bad headaches, so they just pop some over-the-counter headache meds and try to carry on. Perhaps more people would seek care if they knew migraines were a neurological condition. Also, the stigma that is attached to it may cause some to not want an official diagnosis. They may be afraid that being labeled a migraineur will stunt their career or social life.

#3 Only About 1 in 25 Migraineurs See a Headache Specialist

Of course, since migraines are a neurological condition, a headache specialist may not always be the right person to see. But the fact remains that even in the US there are only about 500 certified headache specialists. That means there simply are not enough specialists to see all 38 million migraine patients in the country. This leaves most people seeking care from a general practitioner, so it is no wonder that migraineurs are often undertreated. Some doctors still just pass out painkillers for migraines which is no longer considered an appropriate form of care. In fact, most professionals agree that opioids should be a last result and are likely to have no long-term benefits for migraineurs.

#4 Only About 12% of Migraineurs Receive Preventative Care

As with most medical conditions, treatment for migraines is based on relieving symptoms after an attack occurs rather than on trying to prevent future episodes. Symptomatic care is a common practice in modern medicine. It means extra money for pharmaceutical companies since it involves taking a pill every time an episode occurs rather than preventing migraines from occurring. As a result, there aren’t a lot of preventative options for patients.

Hope for Migraine Patients Who Want Preventative Care

Upper cervical chiropractors focus on the underlying cause of many migraines. As a result, this natural and drug-free method of care has helped many to see fewer or less severe episodes. In fact, in case studies, upper cervical chiropractic has helped some to be completely migraine free, even some who suffered from chronic migraine issues. How does it work?

Upper cervical chiropractic care involves precise measurements of the C1 and C2 vertebrae (located at the base of the skull) using diagnostic imaging techniques. Then a gentle adjustment is customized for each patient. Corrections are provided on an as-needed basis to get the C1 and C2 in place and keep them there. How does this affect migraines?

When these vertebrae are out of place, it can have several detrimental effects are the central nervous and vascular systems:

  • Inhibits cerebrospinal fluid drainage leading to intracranial pressure
  • Restricts blood flow via the vertebral arteries leading to reduced blood flow to certain parts of the brain
  • Places pressure on the brainstem and spinal cord inhibiting proper function of the body’s system for communicating internally

Any of these effects can result in migraines. Therefore, it makes sense to start here and relieve the underlying problem rather than just caring for migraine symptoms.

If you are suffering from migraines, especially if you have any history of head or neck trauma such as a concussion or whiplash, you may be a prime candidate for upper cervical chiropractic care. To learn more, contact an upper cervical practitioner in your local area and schedule a no-obligation consultation. You may be about to take your first step down the road to better overall health and well-being.

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The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.