Do You Suffer From Migraines?
Everyone either knows someone who suffers from migraine, or struggles with migraine themselves.
- Migraine is the 3rd most prevalent illness in the world.
- Nearly 1 in 4 U.S. households includes someone with migraine.
- Amazingly, 12% of the population – including children – suffers from migraine.
- 18% of American women, 6% of men, and 10% of children experience migraines.
- Migraine is most common between the ages of 25 and 55.
- Migraine tends to run in families. About 90% of migraine sufferers have a family history of migraine.
Symptoms of Headaches and Migraines
- Pain on one side of your head
- Pulsating or throbbing pain
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Nausea or Vomiting
Are Headaches Normal?
One of the common misconceptions about headaches is that they are a normal part of life. So many people have them that they begin to think that because they are so common they must be normal. We meet hundreds of patients that have fallen into this trap, suffering with a problem that could be solved. Headaches and migraines are not a normal part of life, and you deserve to have a dedicated team working to help you overcome them.
What about Medication?
The majority of people that suffer with headaches or migraines use medication to help make their symptoms bearable, but in this day and age there must be more that we can do. The reality is that medication is not designed to correct the cause of your headaches, it’s designed to help you with your symptoms. If you want long term relief you have to work with a healthcare provider that will help you get to the source of the problem. Our team at Integrative Physical Medicine was designed help patients that want long term relief.
Are You a Candidate for Treatment?
If you have headaches or migraines then chances are very good that you are a candidate for treatment in our clinic. Your initial consultation is a great time for you to work with our team to see if our treatment options are right for you. If you are struggling with headaches right now, you owe it to yourself to take advantage of one of our appointment slots that we have opened this week.
Why Choose Integrative Physical Medicine?
Integrative Physical Medicine offers some of the most advanced non-surgical procedures available today. Our healthcare team is made up of doctors and healthcare professionals from different disciplines, which allows us to offer our patients a wide array of treatment options. Our team will establish an accurate diagnosis, and work with you to design a treatment plan that fits your individual needs.
On your first visit to our office our doctors will sit down with you one on one to evaluate your case. This will give you a chance to see the dedication we have to finding the true cause of your condition. We expect to provide each of our patients with the highest level of healthcare.
Causes of Migraines
Though migraine causes aren’t understood, genetics and environmental factors appear to play a role.
Migraines may be caused by changes in the brainstem and its interactions with the trigeminal nerve, a major pain pathway.
Imbalances in brain chemicals — including serotonin, which helps regulate pain in your nervous system — also may be involved. Researchers are still studying the role of serotonin in migraines.
Serotonin levels drop during migraine attacks. This may cause your trigeminal nerve to release substances called neuropeptides, which travel to your brain’s outer covering (meninges). The result is migraine pain. Other neurotransmitters play a role in the pain of migraine, including calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP).
Migraine Headache triggers
A number of factors may trigger migraines, including:
- Hormonal changes in women. Fluctuations in estrogen seem to trigger headaches in many women. Women with a history of migraines often report headaches immediately before or during their periods, when they have a major drop in estrogen.Others have an increased tendency to develop migraines during pregnancy or menopause.Hormonal medications, such as oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy, also may worsen migraines. Some women, however, find their migraines occur less often when taking these medications.
- Foods. Aged cheeses, salty foods and processed foods may trigger migraines. Skipping meals or fasting also can trigger attacks.
- Food additives. The sweetener aspartame and the preservative monosodium glutamate (MSG), found in many foods, may trigger migraines.
- Drinks. Alcohol, especially wine, and highly caffeinated beverages may trigger migraines.
- 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 — can trigger migraines in some people.
- Changes in wake-sleep pattern. Missing sleep or getting too much sleep may trigger migraines in some people, as can jet lag.
- Physical factors. Intense physical exertion, including sexual activity, may provoke migraines.
- Changes in the environment. A change of weather or barometric pressure can prompt a migraine.
- Medications. Oral contraceptives and vasodilators, such as nitroglycerin, can aggravate migraines.
Several factors make you more prone to having migraines, including:
- Family history. If you have a family member with migraines, then you have a good chance of developing them too.
- Age. Migraines can begin at any age, though the first often occurs during adolescence. Migraines tend to peak during your 30s, and gradually become less severe and less frequent in the following decades.
- Sex. Women are three times more likely to have migraines. Headaches tend to affect boys more than girls during childhood, but by the time of puberty and beyond, more girls are affected.
- Hormonal changes. If you are a woman who has migraines, you may find that your headaches begin just before or shortly after onset of menstruation.They may also change during pregnancy or menopause. Migraines generally improve after menopause.Some women report that migraine attacks begin during pregnancy, or their attacks worsen. For many, the attacks improved or didn’t occur during later stages in the pregnancy. Migraines often return during the postpartum period.
Sometimes your efforts to control your migraine pain cause problems, such as:
- Abdominal problems. Certain pain relievers called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others), may cause abdominal pain, bleeding, ulcers and other complications, especially if taken in large doses or for a long period of time.
- Medication-overuse headaches. Taking over-the-counter or prescription headache medications more than 10 days a month for three months or in high doses may trigger serious medication-overuse headaches.Medication-overuse headaches occur when medications stop relieving pain and begin to cause headaches. You then use more pain medication, which continues the cycle.
- Serotonin syndrome. Serotonin syndrome is a rare, potentially life-threatening condition that occurs when your body has too much of the nervous system chemical called serotonin.While the risk is considered extremely low, taking migraine medications called triptans and antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) may increase the risk of serotonin syndrome. These medications naturally raise serotonin levels, and it is possible that combining them could cause levels that are too high.Triptans and SSRIs or SNRIs may be used together, but it’s important to watch out for possible symptoms of serotonin syndrome such as changes in cognition, behavior and muscle control (such as involuntary jerking).Triptans include medications such as sumatriptan (Imitrex) or zolmitriptan (Zomig). Some common SSRIs include sertraline (Zoloft), fluoxetine (Sarafem, Prozac) and paroxetine (Paxil). SNRIs include duloxetine (Cymbalta) and venlafaxine (Effexor XR).
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Our combined experience and our integrated treatment options make Integrative Physical Medicine an excellent choice when it comes to headaches and migraines.
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