Interesting Facts about Headaches and Migraines
- It is the 3rd most common disease in the world!
- Global Prevalence – 14.7% which equates to approximately 1 in 7 people.
- It is more common in females – 85% of chronic migraine suffers are women, this is thought to be due to hormonal contributors.
- Triggers vary widely, which is why it affects so many people.
- Auras are a warning sign, but not everyone will experience them.
- Migraines can cause temporary blindness.
- Hemiplegic migraines – loss of lower limb function?!
- Whilst this is very uncommon, a minority of migraine sufferers experience hemiplegic migraines which results in varying loss of lower limb function for up to 24 hours. As you can imagine, this can be very terrifying.
- They affect children – in fact, migraines are a leading cause of children visits to the emergency department. Migraines are notoriously under diagnosed in the younger population.
- Thought to be hereditary – 80-90% of sufferers tend to have at least one close family relative who also suffers.
- Linked to enteric nervous system – the central nervous system (CNS) is the known contributor to sending pain signals which result in the feelings of a migraine. The CNS is closely linked to the enteric nervous system, which is why some people experience abdominal migraines.
- Linked to anxiety and depression – both mental health conditions are more common in those who suffer from migraines; it is not yet known how exactly they are related.
- It is the 6th most disabling illness worldwide!
- Historically, migraines have been treated purely by medication, but we now know frequent use of medication increases the occurrence of headaches and migraines.
The above facts are just a brief overview of the concepts surrounding migraines. If anything, it should convey the complexity and variety of migraine as a condition, and why it can be so challenging to find a successful treatment plan.
If you have more questions or would like to know more about the treatment alternatives we provide, contact us on 1800 HEADACHE or [email protected]! We can book you in with an experienced headache clinician today to help find the root cause, and establish a treatment plan now!