Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Triggers and treatment for migraine headaches


Migraine attacks can be an extremely debilitating. The condition of recurring headaches may run in the family, may be related to stress or triggered by certain foods. Irregular eating, sleeping patterns, allergic reactions and weather are other migraine triggers.

There are three different levels of migraine treatment – preventative treatment, acute treatment and rescue treatment.

Medications

Medications used for treatment of migraines headache can be classified into two broad categories:

Pain-relieving medications (that is acute or abortive treatment) - These drugs are given to stop the symptoms that have already begun and can be taken anytime taken during migraine attacks. These are non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), Triptans, Ergot, Anti-nausea medications, Butalbital combinations and Opiates.

These medications are most effective when taken as soon as you experience signs or symptoms of a migraine. Rest and sleep after taking the medication can increase the efficacy of the medicine.
Preventive medications - These medications are taken regularly (if needed daily) to control migraines (i.e. reduce the severity or frequency of symptoms). These include cardiovascular drugs such as beta blockers (such as propranolol), calcium channel blockers (verapamil), antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs, cyproheptadine and botulinum toxin type A (Botox).

Preventive medications however, are not effective in completely eliminating headaches. They can cause some serious side effects. If the preventative medicines are effective and you have been migraine-free for six months to a year, your doctor may advise you to lower the dose to see if you remain migraine free or the migraine headache returns without it. For migraine treatments to be effective, take the prescribed medications as your doctor recommends.


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