5 Causes of Chronic Migraines

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Nearly 75% of adults ages 18 to 65 worldwide have reported a headache in the past year. Among these, 30% or more reported migraines. Migraines are now the sixth-highest cause of years lost due to disability worldwide. 

If you suffer from migraine headaches, it’s important to understand what’s triggering your symptoms. Then, you can learn to avoid those triggers.

Read on to learn the common causes of migraine headaches today.

What is a Chronic Migraine?

Chronic migraines are frequent, lasting episodes of migraines and headaches. Symptoms can change daily (or even by the hour). Some patients struggle to determine when a migraine or headache ends before another begins.

It’s important to note that migraines are not “bad headaches.”

Headaches aren’t severe enough to affect your ability to function and complete normal activities. Migraines affect your brain directly, increasing the severity. A migraine can disrupt your routine.

Symptoms

To be diagnosed with chronic migraines, you must have experienced a headache or migraine for at least 15 days within a month. Symptoms must occur for at least three months.

You must also have at least eight days where your headaches include migraine symptoms, occurring for at least three months.

Symptoms can include:

  • Pain on one side
  • Pain that pulses or pounds
  • Moderate or severe pain
  • Pain that is worse with activity
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Difficulty speaking
  • One-sided weakness or paralysis
  • Balance issues
  • One-sided blindness
  • Flashing, haze, or other vision changes
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
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Let a specialist at nationalheadacheinstitute.com know if you experience these symptoms. 

Neglecting to seek treatment could lead to complications, including strokes, aura-related seizures, or heart attacks (which are rare). Visiting a doctor will ensure you’re properly diagnosed before beginning treatment. 

Causes

What causes chronic migraines? Sometimes, the condition is genetic. Blood flow changes in your brain can cause chronic migraines, too.

Your risk of chronic migraines can increase due to:

  • Head injuries
  • Certain chronic conditions (like fibromyalgia)
  • Sleep disorders (like sleep apnea)
  • Obesity
  • Mental health conditions (like anxiety or depression)

Incorrect signaling from nerve clusters, malfunctions in signal processing centers, or changes in how your body feels pain can cause migraines as well. Sometimes, changes can make it harder for brain cells to conduct electrical signals, leading to migraines.

Triggers

Certain triggers in your environment (smells, sounds, foods, etc.) can also trigger a migraine. For example:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Hormone changes
  • Dehydration or hunger
  • Too much sleep
  • Lack of sleep
  • Light
  • Certain sounds
  • Frequent headache medication use
  • Caffeine
  • Certain foods or additives
  • Certain scents

Keep track of your personal chronic migraine triggers before your appointment with a specialist. 

Causes of Chronic Migraines: Visit a Specialist Today

If these causes of chronic migraines sound familiar, don’t wait to seek help. Instead, visit a specialist right away. With treatment, you can manage your chronic migraines to improve your quality of life.

Get the treatment you need today.

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