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Migraines

The third most prevalent illness in the world

Nearly 25% of U.S. Households affected

A migraine is a severe headache that can cause significant pain for hours to days and is often disabling, so that the person is unable to function normally. Along with the pain, the person typically also experiences nausea and sensitivity to light and sound, often requiring them to take to their bed in total darkness. Migraines usually begin in childhood, adolescence or early adulthood. Migraine is very common – it’s the third most prevalent illness in the world, affecting nearly one fourth of U.S. households. The frequency of migraines varies from person to person: some people have attacks several times per month, while others might have just one per year or less. Though anyone can get migraines, they are particularly common among women during their reproductive years and tend to strike between ages 15 and 55.

Causes

Experts used to think that migraines were caused by the opening and narrowing of blood vessels in the brain. Today, though the causes are still not fully understood, genetics and environmental factors are thought to play a strong role. Specifically, migraines may be caused by changes in the brainstem and the way it interacts with certain nerves that control pain, and these changes may be inherited. Brain chemical imbalances may also be a factor, especially those involving the chemical serotonin which helps regulate pain.

Migraines may also be triggered by hormone fluctuations (in women), certain foods like cheese and processed items, food additives like MSG and aspartame, alcohol and caffeine, stress, bright light, strong odors like cigarette smoke or perfume, changes in sleep habits, excessive exercise, weather changes and certain medications including birth control pills and vasodilators.

 

RECENT DEVELOPMENTS

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Aimovig®: A Cautious New Hope

Aug 07/Jaime Sanders
By now, just about every migraine patient has heard about Aimovig® (erenumab), the first FDA approved treatment for the prevention of migraine in episodic and chronic patients. The news was announced on May 17, 2018 and I’m sure there was a resoun
READ MORE
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Have You Tried…? Some Of The Worst Things You Can Say To A Migraine Patient

May 16/Jaime Sanders
It feels like migraine patients have been given remedies, cures and suggestions that will help them since the beginning of time. Most of the time these “tips” are things we have already tried, or simply old wives’ tales passed down from someone
READ MORE
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10 Things Migraine Advocates Wish the World Knew About Migraine

Apr 12/GHLF Staff
  The absolute number one thing we wish the world knew about migraine is that it is NOT a headache. Headache is one of several disabling symptoms of migraine, which is a serious and debilitating neurological disease affecting over almost 40 mill
READ MORE

Roughly 40 percent of chronic migraine patients suffer from an additional four chronic conditions, says Dr. Thorpe, who recently authored the paper “Prevalence, Health Care Spending and Comorbidities Associated with Chronic Migraine Patients.”

Click here to read more

 

VIDEOS

Learn more about migraines and the impact they can have on a person's quality of life.

ARTICLES & PRESS RELEASES

Aug 07

Aimovig®: A Cautious New Hope

Jamie Sanders/ Migraine

By now, just about every migraine patient has heard about Aimovig® (erenumab), the first FDA approved treatment for the prevention of migraine in episodic and chronic patients. The news was announced on May 17, 2018 and I’m sure there was a resounding cheer from migraine patients all across the country. Aimovig® is a member of […]

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May 16

Have You Tried…? Some Of The Worst Things You Can Say To A Migraine Patient

/ Migraine

It feels like migraine patients have been given remedies, cures and suggestions that will help them since the beginning of time. Most of the time these “tips” are things we have already tried, or simply old wives’ tales passed down from someone’s uncle’s cousin’s great-grandmother. I asked my closest migraine friends and advocates to share […]

⇀ READ MORE
Apr 12

10 Things Migraine Advocates Wish the World Knew About Migraine

/ Migraine

  The absolute number one thing we wish the world knew about migraine is that it is NOT a headache. Headache is one of several disabling symptoms of migraine, which is a serious and debilitating neurological disease affecting over almost 40 million men, women and children in the United States and over 1 billion worldwide.1 […]

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Oct 13

New survey illuminates and quantifies stigma and challenges facing migraine sufferers

/ Migraine

The causes of migraines are little understood, although genetics and environmental factors play a role, according to the Mayo Clinic. “Migraines are often undiagnosed and untreated. If you regularly experience signs and symptoms of migraine attacks, keep a record of your attacks and how you treated them. Then make an appointment with your doctor to […]

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Sep 21

Managing Migraine Trigger Blaming

/ Migraine

What if life is your migraine trigger? Managing triggers is important. It is also important to understand that sometimes we can’t.

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