Migraines: Find Out The Real Story
Education and Advocacy Do you know what migraines are and what causes them?
- A migraine is a complex brain disorder. Migraines are not “just a headache”.
- Migraines are the 3rd most common disease in the world.
- Often, but not always, the pain is accompanied by nausea, sensitivity to bright lights, loud sounds, and strong odours.
- Migraines usually last from 4-72 hours and can render the sufferer bedridden and unable to attend work or school.
- A migraine is diagnosed clinically, meaning it is diagnosed based on the symptoms that an individual experiences. Notably, there is no blood test, x-ray, CAT scan or MRI of the brain that can diagnose a migraine.
- Migraines are frequently under-recognized as the individual refers to their headache as “bad stress headaches”, “recurrent sinus headaches”, or “period headaches”.
- In Canada, there are an estimated 3 million women and 1 million men affected by migraines.
- A migraine is intimately influenced by the balance of our body: lack of sleep, sleeping in, irregular bedtime and wake times, delayed or skipped meals, dehydration, caffeine excess or withdrawal, decreased mood, anxiety, stressful events or relaxing after a stressful event, hormonal fluctuations with menstrual cycles and hormone supplementation can all influence the severity and frequency of migraine attacks.
- Up to 50 percent of migraine sufferers are not even aware that they have a migraine.