A migraine can cause severe throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation, usually on one side of the head. It’s often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound.
How are migraines treated?
Migraine headaches are chronic. They can’t be cured, but they can be managed and possibly improved. There are two main treatment approaches that use medications: abortive and preventive.
- Abortive medications are most effective when you use them at the first sign of a migraine. Take them while the pain is mild. By possibly stopping the headache process, abortive medications help stop or decrease your migraine symptoms, including pain, nausea, light sensitivity, etc. Some abortive medications work by constricting your blood vessels, bringing them back to normal and relieving the throbbing pain.
- Preventive (prophylactic) medications may be prescribed when your headaches are severe, occur more than four times a month and are significantly interfering with your normal activities. Preventive medications reduce the frequency and severity of the headaches. Medications are generally taken on a regular, daily basis to help prevent migraines.
What medications are used to relieve migraine pain?
Over-the-counter medications are effective for some people with mild to moderate migraines. The main ingredients in pain relieving medications are ibuprofen, aspirin, acetaminophen, naproxen and caffeine.
Three over-the-counter products approved by the Food and Drug Administration for migraine headaches are:
- Excedrin® Migraine.
- Advil® Migraine.
- Motrin® Migraine Pain.
Be cautious when taking over-the-counter pain relieving medications. Sometimes overusing them can cause analgesic-rebound headaches or a dependency problem. If you’re taking any over-the-counter pain medications more than two to three times a week, report that to your healthcare provider. They may suggest prescription medications that may be more effective.
Prescription drugs for migraine headaches include:
Triptan class of drugs (these are abortives):
Calcium channel blockers:
Calcitonin gene-related (CGRP) monoclonal antibodies:
- Valproic acid.
- Gabapentin (Neurontin )
Your healthcare provider might recommend vitamins, minerals, or herbs, including:
Drugs to relieve migraine pain come in a variety of formulations including pills, tablets, injections, suppositories and nasal sprays. You and your healthcare provider will discuss the specific medication, combination of medications and formulations to best meet your unique headache pain.
Drugs to relieve nausea are also prescribed, if needed.
All medications should be used under the direction of a headache specialist or healthcare provider familiar with migraine therapy. As with any medication, it’s important to carefully follow the label instructions and your healthcare provider’s advice.
Alternative migraine management methods, also known as home remedies, include:
- Resting in a dark, quiet, cool room.
- Applying a cold compress or washcloth to your forehead or behind your neck. (Some people prefer heat.)
- Massaging your scalp.
- Applying pressure to your temples in a circular motion.
- Keeping yourself in a calm state. Meditating.
Migraine attacks can last for hours to days, and the pain can be so severe that it interferes with your daily activities. Fioricet and Gabapentin is a perfect medicine for migraine prevention.
For some people, a warning symptom known as an aura occurs before or with the headache. An aura can include visual disturbances, such as flashes of light or blind spots, or other disturbances, such as tingling on one side of the face or in an arm or leg and difficulty speaking.
Medications can help prevent some migraines and make them less painful. The right medicines, combined with self-help remedies and lifestyle changes, might help.
If you’re considering treatment for migraine headaches relief, you should know there are a wide range of options available to you.
For the record, I’m no stranger to every sort of migraine headache treatment that’s out there. Some have worked fairly well, and other just FAILED MISERABLY.
So , with that said, I’ll try to wrap up neatly what I have learned over the course of my 10 year quest for migraine headaches relief.
There are a number of migraine triggers, including:
- Hormonal changes in women. Fluctuations in estrogen, such as before or during menstrual periods, pregnancy and menopause, seem to trigger headaches in many women.Hormonal medications, such as oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy, also can worsen migraines. Some women, however, find their migraines occurring less often when taking these medications.
- Drinks. These include alcohol, especially wine, and too much caffeine, such as coffee.
- Stress. Stress at work or home can cause migraines.
- Sensory stimuli. Bright lights and sun glare can induce migraines, as can loud sounds. Strong smells — including perfume, paint thinner, secondhand smoke and others — trigger migraines in some people.
- Sleep changes. Missing sleep, getting too much sleep or jet lag can trigger migraines in some people.
- Physical factors. Intense physical exertion, including sexual activity, might provoke migraines.
- Weather changes. A change of weather or barometric pressure can prompt a migraine.
- Medications. Oral contraceptives and vasodilators, such as nitroglycerin, can aggravate migraines.
- Foods. Aged cheeses and salty and processed foods might trigger migraines. So might skipping meals or fasting.
- Food additives. These include the sweetener aspartame and the preservative monosodium glutamate (MSG), found in many foods.
The Drawbacks – Common Mistakes in Treatment For Migraine Headaches Relief
1) The Only Solution For Migraine Headaches Relief is Medication
If we become ill, we visit a doctor. The doctor prescribes headache relief medicine.
If this is the kind of mindset you have, then your solution for migraine headaches relief will be medication.
This solution will lead to 3 results:
Your current migraine headache will be immediately relieved
A disastrous cycle of headaches will rebound that will seem almost impossible to escape
You will end up frustrated with all medications for migraine headaches relief
2) Inability To Identify Triggers
Any good treatment for migraine headaches relief SHOULD begin with identifying your personal migraine triggers. But , in my experience, not one doctor I have ever consulted put the first emphasis on identifying my personal triggers.
And, in all of my years of experience, I have found this to be the ONLY effective migraine headaches relief CURE. Instead, each and every doctor gave me a prescription for one medication or another – many prescribing 2 or more drugs at the same time.
Over the course of 10 years, this has been the automatic treatment for migraine headaches relief from EVERY doctor I visited.
The FIRST step in any treatment for migraine headaches relief must be identifying and eliminating ALL of your personal triggers. This will benefit you much more than any medication EVER will.
3) Afraid of All Medications
If the alternative is blindly taking every medication prescribed, it’s better to avoid all medications.
But… an effective treatment for migraine headaches relief will include the occasional use of abortive migraine medication. Zomig, Axert, Imitrex are a few examples. In addition , Aleve will be periodically advised to give the Triptan, or abortive medication, an effective boost.
But if you are already following a treatment for migraine headaches relief that includes NO medication, this is much preferred than following a treatment with LOADS of migraine medication.
Not Questioning Your Treatment For Migraine Headaches Relief
We’re raised not to question doctors. It’s a rare doctor indeed that relishes in having his authority or judgment questioned.
This is especially so when you want to ask questions of your doctor after he prescribes your treatment for migraine headaches relief.
But your doctor is not the one that has to deal with the consequences of the plan of treatment. And he is well compensated for the few short minutes you get to bask in his presence. If a question comes to your mind, you need to ask it.
If you want to know why a particular medication is giving you certain reactions, then ask.
If you want to why you are suffering even more migraine headaches since the onset of your treatment for migraine headaches relief, that question needs to be asked as well.
If you are not satisfied with the answers and treatment you are getting from your current doctor, you shouldn’t hesitate to see another doctor.
Just like any other profession in this world, not all doctors have the same level of skill.
4) Not Trusting What Your Own Body Is Telling You About Your Treatment For Migraine Headaches Relief
When I was child, my parents instructed me to do as the doctor advised.
But after 10 years of taking medications for migraine headaches I realized a couple of things. The first was that the more medications I took for migraine headaches relief, the more frequent and severe my migraines became. The second thing I realized what that I had tried virtually medical treatment available.
I had not listened to what my body had been telling me all along.
See, if you can answer this one simple question: When was the last time you had a migraine headache and didn’t take a pill?
When was the last time you considered a natural treatment for migraine headaches relief?
You have the ability to decide which treatment for migraine headaches relief is right for you.
An effective treatment for migraine headaches relief requires a Triptan prescription that works best for you and fioricet