This is a sponsored post. I was compensated by Med-IQ through an educational grant from Allergan to write about the realities of migraine as a neurologic disease. All opinions are my own.
I’ll never forget that rainy day I was called to the office for an early dismissal. I was a 14-year-old freshman in high school, passing notes in class and my only worry was if the boy across from me liked me, or so I thought. I gathered up my things for my early dismissal and I headed to the office. In the office was my dad. “Let’s go your brother is in the car,” he said. My dad was serious. Though my dad was never serious. He was worried, he didn’t speak a word the entire ride. All he mentioned was my mom had been taken to the hospital. We asked him questions he stayed silent, we drove and drove. The 30-minute ride seem to last 30 years. We pulled into the hospital.
We rushed in and upstairs to where my mom was. Nobody was saying anything! Not my dad, not the doctor, not my brother, no one. We finally entered into a room with a bed and a curtain. The curtain was pulled back and there she was. My mom! My mom was sitting up, with cords hooked to her and she held her arms out for my brother and me. I don’t remember much after that, but what I do remember is that I cried tears of joy and relief. My mom was okay. All of this because she thought she simply had a headache.
Fellow readers allow me to take a moment to introduce you to Med-IQ. Med-IQ is an accredited Baltimore based company that focuses on working with healthcare providers such as doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and other healthcare professionals to provide them with extraordinary education in their field. Education providing a wide range of learning for providers to better meet the needs of their patients and healthcare delivery. Though over the past few years they have broadened their horizon and began consumer education. That is where I come in. Today I will better help you understand what is a headache/migraine the difference between the two, how to approach the topic with your doctor, outcomes, plus will also touch on managing stress and uncertainty during this global pandemic. Oh, and if you’re wondering what happened to my mom I will finish that a little later.
“It’s just a headache,” My mom thought. Along with most people who get head pain starts to think. There are so many external and internal stigmas that come with just believing you have a headache. Often times telling ourselves it’s just a headache causes internal thoughts that could trick our brain into minimizing the pain that actually comes with a migraine. Because who wants to have a migraine right? Today we debunk that.
Headaches. They are a continuous pain in your head. But a migraine? A migraine is actually a disease. A genetic neurologic disease that is caused by a genetic mutation. This inherited from a member of the family who also experienced migraines. A migraine can affect many especially women, and be can be potentially harmful if not addressed. It may also come as a shock to you but most migraine victims are mainly women ages 18 to 44 years old during their reproductive years. Me being age 30 that was pretty scary to learn. However, knowledge is power, and knowing these things will help me and others better protect ourselves.
According to the (NIH) National Institutes of Health migraines actually will affect every 1 out of 7 Americans. Migraines are also the leading cause of things such as ER and outpatient visits. So how can you tell if you have a headache/migraine? Well, it can be tough however check out the list below.
- Light sensitivity
- Inability to function–you want to lie down
- Nausea–not wanting to eat
If you have one of the symptoms you may have a headache. But two or three of the symptoms you may have a migraine. Take into consideration of writing down what you feel when your head starts to hurt. What you ate, where you were etc. Note these things down and present them to your doctor. Identifying certain triggers can help determine if you suffer from migraines and you and your doctor will be able to discuss treatment plans like my mother did. My mother was rushed to the hospital and this is what she had to say about her experience.
“That migraine probably saved my life. Had my migraine headaches not occurred I may not have made it to the hospital in time. Me having a migraine lead to me going into the hospital where they found out I was anemic & I needed a blood transfusion.“
That was one of the scariest days of my life, but my mom is here. She is a true survivor! Today years later she treats her migraines with BOTOX™ every few months along with injections of a strong NSAID. A treatment made specifically for her between her and her doctor. Discuss treatment plans with your doctor to find out what works best for you. In the meantime, you could also do things such as get a lot of sleep, eat regular meals, exercise, less screen time, and much more. You can also consider those tips for managing stress during this global pandemic as well. Before you go I strongly urge you to participate in the survey that could save yourself and others!
Med-IQ is conducting an anonymous survey and would appreciate your input. The survey will take less than 15 minutes to complete. Survey responses are shared only in aggregate. Your responses to these survey questions will provide Med-IQ with important information about your experiences with migraine and related care, which will help us develop future educational initiatives in this area. Once you’ve completed the survey, you will have the option of providing your email address to be entered into a drawing administered by SOMA Strategies to win 1 of 10 $100 VISA gift cards. If you choose to enter, your email address will be used only to randomly draw the winners and notify them of their prize.
At the end of the day, it’s important to understand that knowing the difference between “It’s just a headache,” and a migraine can make all the difference.
To learn more about Med-IQ or the survey click here.
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