Migraine & Headache Awareness Month: 5 Things You Might Not Know About Migraines

June is Migraine & Headache Awareness Month! We’re sharing helpful info in this month’s blog posts, both for sufferers of migraines and their loved ones. 

There are lots of misconceptions about migraines that people encounter. The biggest misconception is that they are “just a bad headache.” We hope you’ll read on to learn why that isn’t true! 

Here are some common myths about migraines that you might have heard before. 

Myth: Migraines are a psychological disorder or, “all in your head.”

Truth: Migraines are a neurological disease, not a psychological disorder. Migraines are shown to physically affect your brain and body. During an episode, blood vessels in your brain expand, causing severe pain and pressure. It can also cause vomiting and extreme sensitivity to light, sounds and smells. 

Myth: People who suffer migraine are just trying to get out of work.

Truth: Migraine sufferers experience extreme, debilitating pain each time they experience an episode. Because they might have lived with this condition their whole lives, they can recognize the warning signs before the majority of the pain hits. If someone who suffers migraines excuses themselves, it’s to minimize triggers and attempt to avoid the worst of the pain in a public situation. 

Myth: All migraines come with an “aura.”

Truth: Not all migraines have the same symptoms for each person. Some sufferers describe experiencing an “aura” before or during a migraine. An aura can seem like a strong glowing light, electric sparks in their vision, an inability to speak clearly, or feeling tingly on one side of their body. It is unique to each person who experiences migraines, and doesn’t always happen, even if they’ve occurred before. 

Myth: You can cure migraines with supplements.

Truth: There is no established cure for migraines, but there are supplements that research has shown to be helpful. These should be discussed with your doctor as part of a treatment plan. Just because something says it’s “all natural,” doesn’t mean it’s safe. 

Myth: There is nothing that can help migraines.

Truth: There are methods and treatment plans that can minimize the effect of migraines, even though there is no official cure to get rid of them completely. Some doctors prescribe medications, and lifestyle changes can reduce their frequency. Keeping a journal of your migraine experiences will help you understand what your own migraine triggers are.

Migraines are the 3rd most common affliction in the world, affecting 1 in 7 people across the globe. If you’ve never experienced one yourself, you are very lucky! Migraines can affect every part of a person’s life. It’s important to understand what they are going through in order to help.

Resources: 

American Migraine Foundation: Migraine Resources & Support