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Migraine: It is Not Just a Headache

Many people have the misconception that migraine and headache are one and the same. In reality, however, they are different from each other. While a migraine is a type of headache, not all headaches are migraines. Some headaches are only mild, and some result in severe pain. When the latter is experienced, it is most likely a case of migraine. It is important to know whether you are suffering from migraine or a different type of headache as this will help you identify what treatment options are the best. If you do not know how to differentiate the two based on their apparent characteristics, it would be best to consult with a medical professional.

The Different Types of Headache

Migraine: It is Not Just a HeadacheOne of the most common is cluster headache, which is characterized by having one to three episodes of painful headaches, or what is also known as clusters throughout the day. The pain is going to be debilitating and is often felt behind the eye. Some of the most common effects of this type of headache include being red and teary of the eyes. This is more prevalent in men as against women.

There are also many people who experience sinus headaches. While this may not necessarily be a form of headache, it can still result into pain basically because of congestion. With irritated and inflamed sinus, your cheeks and forehead can be painful.

Most of the headaches, or at least 90%, are believed to be tension headaches. Some of its major causes include stress, lack of sleep, and fatigue.

More so, it is believed that 10% of the headaches experienced by people are migraines. Those who are suffering from such may typically experience vomiting, nausea, blurry vision, abdominal pain, and dizziness. Migraine attacks and symptoms can greatly vary from one person to another, which is also the reason why the treatment options can differ.

Migraine: It is Not Just a HeadacheHow To Tell The Difference

The following are some of the points that should be kept in mind to easily tell if it is just an ordinary headache or if it is already migraine:

  • Severity of pain: Most of the other forms of headache can only result into mild pain. Migraine, on the other hand, can be severe and can lead into a throbbing feeling.
  • Gender: Tension and migraine headaches are both more prevalent in women than in men. In fact, up to 70% of people with migraine are women. This can be attributed to the fact that one of the major causes of migraine is hormonal change, which is experienced by women during their menstrual period.
  • Location of the pain: It is migraine when pain is felt on just a specific side of the head.
  • Visual aura: Visual aura refers to the appearance of dots or flashing lights in your vision prior to a migraine attack. When such happens, it is most likely that you are experiencing migraine and not any other types of headache.
  • Length: When it is tension headache, it can be developed and resolved quickly. More often than not, within just a day. On the other hand, in the case of migraine, it can take hours and even days before it develops, and pain will be felt for an extended period as well.

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