If I told you that 39 million Americans get migraines, you probably wouldn’t be surprised. It is a widespread health concern, and it seems to be growing worse. However, there are a number of facts about migraines that may shock you. Here are some statistics and other facts that you should know if you or a loved one is living with this condition.
Only 85-90% of Migraines Present with a Headache
Some people think that migraines are just terrible headaches. But even if you know better, you may not have realized that some migraines have no headache at all. The term silent migraine is used to refer to migraines that don’t have headache as a symptom. There are still plenty of other symptoms that can occur with silent migraine including sensory sensitivities, nausea, neck pain, vertigo, vision symptoms, and more.
Neck Pain Is One of the Most Common Migraine Symptoms
If you get migraines, pay attention to when you experience neck pain. For most patients, it is either right before or during an attack. Does that surprise you? Many medical sites leave neck pain off of the migraine symptoms list. However, some studies have found that up to 75% of migraineurs have neck pain as a symptom, making it one of the three most common symptoms (after headaches and sensory sensitivity).
There Is Little Evidence that Foods Trigger Migraines
If you are living with migraines, you may be avoiding favorites like chocolate, red wine, or coffee in order to reduce the frequency of your attacks. However, there is little scientific evidence that food or drink actually trigger migraines. Why does the confusion occur? For many patients, migraine prodrome (symptoms that happen within 24 hours of an attack) includes food cravings. You get the craving, eat the food, and then a migraine occurs. It must be the food’s fault, right? Except the craving may have been an indicator that the migraine was already on the way, whether you gave in to eating the food or not.
Obviously, you still want to avoid things that you have a sensitivity or an allergy to. However, you may not have to cut as many things out of your diet as you thought.
You May Be Experiencing Rebound Headaches
What is a rebound headache? These headaches occur when a person overuses medicine such as over the counter headache medications. Since these drugs are not designed for frequent or long-term use, there needs to be some caution. Over the counter doesn’t mean there are no side effects or risks. Medication overuse headaches can create a cycle of more and more pain and pills until it is tough to tell when you are actually having a migraine or just a response to all the headache medication. The best way to find out is to stay off pain relievers for a couple of weeks to see it affects the frequency of your headaches.
Migraine Is the Most Common Neurological Condition
While you may realize that a lot of people get migraines (about 12% of adults), you may not have known that this is a neurological condition. That puts it in the same category as serious diseases like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and multiple sclerosis. For someone who doesn’t understand how difficult it can be to live with chronic migraines, understanding the category of the disease can go a long way toward recognizing this as a severe health condition.
Depression Is Common Among Migraineurs
Is it the pain? The stigma? The cognitive symptoms? While no one knows precisely why people who get migraines are more likely to be depressed, a 2010 study revealed that there is definitely a link between depression and migraines. Especially if you have migraine with aura, there is also a higher risk of suicide, so be sure to discuss any depressive episodes with your doctor. The fact that depression is more common among those living with migraines helps to confirm the fact that this is a neurological condition. Therefore, it is also critical to ensure your central nervous system (CNS) is functioning optimally.
Facts About Migraines and a Natural Help
We hope you enjoyed our list of facts about migraines, and that you found it informative and maybe even a little surprising. What you may be shocked about more than anything is to find out that you can get natural help for your migraines. We want to introduce you to the benefits of upper cervical specific chiropractic for migraines.
This specific form of chiropractic focuses on the precise adjustment of the C1 and C2, located at the base of the skull. When misaligned, these bones can have a significant impact on the central nervous system. For example, a subluxation in the top of the neck can affect brainstem activity and even the amount of blood and oxygen reaching the brain. These can be crucial factors when it comes to the onset of migraines.
If you are living with migraines, especially if you have a history of head or neck injury, it just makes sense to seek the assistance of an upper cervical chiropractor. A no-obligation consultation is an excellent way to get started, and it can help you to determine if this is the right natural therapy to meet your specific needs. Use the search feature on this site to find a preferred doctor in your area and get a start on your journey to greater wellness.