Understanding Migraine Cause to effectively treat Headaches

Migraines afflict more than 28 million Americans, and most of these migraine sufferers are women. These severe headaches can strike at any time, and often take their victims out of commission for hours or even days. Many migraine sufferers live in constant worry over when the next migraine will hit. Because these headaches can be so debilitating, most migraine sufferers hope to find a way to get this condition under control, or even eliminate it altogether. The first step to effectively treating migraines is to understand what the causes of migraines are.

What Happens During a Migraine?

While doctors have not been able to pinpoint the exact cause of a migraine, they do understand a little bit about what happens to the body during one of these episodes. Most migraines appear to be the result of a combination of enlargement of the blood vessels in the brain, and a release of chemicals from the nerve fibers that are wrapped around the blood vessels. This combination can cause inflammation and pain that tends to intensify throughout the duration of the headache. This process also affects the central nervous system as well as the digestive system, which is why many migraine sufferers also experience nausea and diarrhea during one of these migraine episodes.

Identifying your Migraine Triggers

While doctors do not know exactly what the catalyst is to begin this physiological process that causes migraines, there are a number of external factors that seem to trigger the process in some way. Some of the more common migraine triggers are large doses of caffeine, processed meats and cheeses, red wine, and cigarette smoke. Many of these common triggers are easy for migraine sufferers to cut back on, or eliminate entirely from their lifestyle. Other triggers that are not so easy to avoid include lack of sleep, stress, and hormonal changes. Another interesting trigger that causes migraines appears to be bright lights that can cause the vision disturbances that tend to precede many migraines. By identifying your specific triggers, you can make significant progress in reducing your number of migraines or even eliminate them altogether.

Migraines are a difficult medical condition that millions of Americans must deal with every day. Migraines are one of the top reasons for doctor’s office and emergency room visits each year. These debilitating headaches can result in lower productivity in the work place and lower quality of life for the sufferers. The good news is that by identifying the causes of migraines, you can take a large step to controlling your condition.

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