How could you possibly explain the torturous nature of a migraine to someone who’s never had one? It’s a tall task — and one many people may never understand the full explanation. In fact, most of the migraine-free population may be most shocked to learn is that, in all, a single migraine could last for days .
There are actually four stages to a migraine. Not every migraine sufferer experiences all four stages every time, and everyone’s symptoms tends to be different. That’s why keeping track of your unique symptoms and triggers can help you be prepared for an incoming migraine and, in some cases, stop it before the worst arrives.
A few days before (prodrome stage): During this stage, the Mayo Clinic explains, you might start to feel subtle signs that things aren’t quite right. That could include changes in your digestion (e.g. constipation or diarrhea), changes in your mood (e.g. depression), and weird food cravings. Some people also notice that they’re thirstier than usual. At this point, neck and shoulder stiffness or aching may set in as well .
The day of (aura stage): An hour before or during the headache stage, you might start to notice some weird things happening with your vision. The classic instance is zig-zagging sunlights off to one side of your visual field that gradually become larger and more intense (also known as a visual aura). Others have trouble focusing their eyes or a part of their visual field goes blurry. For some people, the visual symptoms of an aura is complemented by a feeling of numbness or pins-and-needles sensations in their extremities or face .
Attack stage: This is it: the intense pounding pressure of a migraine headache. Along with that ache, you’ll probably experience a sensitivity to light and sounds that stimulates the ache worse. Sometimes, this comes with nausea and light-headedness. This stage usually lasts at least four hours and can go for a full 72 hours if it’s not properly treated .
A few days after (postdrome stage): Once the headache passes, you’ll feel like you need a lot of sleep. This “mental hangover ” stage comes with fatigue and weakness as well as a continued sensitivity to light and sounds for the next 24 hours or so .
After a migraine, it’s especially crucial to take some time to be nice to yourself. That means making sleep and nutrition top priorities. Of course, if this is your first time getting a migraine or you’re worried about any aspect of your migraines, definitely check in with Pasadena Pain Management. We can walk you through our TruDenta pain management treatment program that can help alleviate and even prevent your migraines.
Get Treatment for Your Migraine at Pasadena Pain Management
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