Migraines and seizure often go hand in hand. In our article today, we will take a closer look at both of these conditions. We will also discuss symptoms, including aura, which can be associated with both migraines and seizure. Additionally, we will define migralepsy (basically, a migraine seizure) and compare some of the medications used as treatment. Finally, we will conclude by discussing how some patients have found natural help.
Migraines: What Are They?
Migraine is a neurological condition comprised of a number of symptoms that may vary from patient to patient. While the most common symptom of migraine is a headache, don’t confuse the two. Migraines are more than just bad headaches. Other symptoms can include sensory sensitivities, nausea and vomiting, visual disturbances, a tingling sensation in the face or extremities, vertigo, and more. Plus, some patients experience a prodrome before the attack phase or postdrome symptoms in the aftermath of an episode. As we will consider shortly, about 20% of patients experience aura within an hour of the attack.
Seizures: What Are They?
Seizures occur when there is an electrical disturbance in the brain. Depending on the type of seizure, the range and symptoms can vary wildly. One person may get confused or just stare off at nothing, while another patient may experience loss of consciousness, uncontrollable arm and leg movements, or sudden emotional changes. While epilepsy is an underlying condition that causes seizures, it is not the only condition that leads to this symptom.
What Is Migralepsy?
This is an old term that previously referred to a migraine seizure combination. It literally combines the words migraine and epilepsy, to refer to migraines and seizures occurring in sequence. Researchers discovered that it is far more common for a seizure to happen first and then a migraine, although it is possible for the two to occur in either order.
What Are Some of the Similar Symptoms?
There is actually some overlap in the symptoms of both migraines and seizure. For example, sensitivity to light and sound can occur with both as well as nausea and vomiting or irritability. Aura is another factor that migraines and seizures have in common. For example, when experiencing aura before a migraine or a seizure, you may experience visual symptoms. However, there are also some differences in the aura phase.
The Difference Between Migraine Aura and Seizure Aura
When a person experience aura preceding a migraine, he or she may begin to talk more, experience appetite changes, and experience a tingling sensation in the extremities. On the other hand, a person who experiences aura prior to a seizure may suddenly feel depressed, a sense of heaviness, and experience the impending sense that a seizure is about to occur.
Therefore, while aura is a common experience between people who get both migraines and seizure, it may be a drastically different experience with just a few common symptoms (mostly visual in nature).
Treatment Medication for Migraines and Seizures
One would assume that the medication prescribed for seizure and migraine would be different. However, there is some overlap. For example, doctors may prescribe anticonvulsants to reduce the likelihood of a seizure. However, doctors may prescribe these same drugs in an attempt to prevent migraines. On the other hand, migraineurs may be prescribed triptans, a group of drugs unrelated to seizure. Also, patients with migraines sometimes take pain medication in an attempt to mitigate symptoms (the headache, in particular).
One significant difference in migraine treatment is that doctors may recommend a number of lifestyle changes to try and prevent episodes naturally. For example, you can start a migraine journal to try and pinpoint your triggers and avoid these as much as possible. You can also exercise daily, limit alcohol and caffeine intake, manage your stress, and maintain a balanced diet.
Finding Natural Help for Migraines and Seizure
If you are living with one or both of these ailments, especially if you have a history of head or neck injury, upper cervical specific chiropractic may help. Consider the following case study regarding upper cervical chiropractic and seizures.
The patient in the case study experienced seizures that caused convulsions, fatigue, vertigo, tremors, and motor control issues, all while remaining conscious. The seizures would lead to migraines (the more common direction for the two ailments to present, as noted earlier in our article). The chiropractor used x-rays to pinpoint compression points. These were relieved gently. What was the result?
After just five months of adjustments, the patient no longer experienced seizures or the migraines that would follow!
Clearly, upper cervical misalignments need to be corrected if you are living with migraines or seizures. What are the possible connections? C1 and C2 misalignments can impact the central nervous system in several ways. For example, the C1 surrounds and protects the brainstem. However, this means that a misalignment could put pressure on the brainstem. The cervical spine also facilitates blood flow to the brain. Therefore, neck alignment is critical for blood flow and for getting sufficient oxygen to the brain.
If you would like to give upper cervical chiropractic a try, you can use the search feature on this website to locate a preferred doctor. If your first visit reveals a misalignment in the top bones of the neck, correcting this misalignment may provide you the help you need. Get your wellness journey started right today!