Definition (from: PubMed Health) – A migraine is a common type of headache that may occur with symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, or sensitivity to light. In many people, a throbbing pain is felt only on one side of the head. Some people who get migraines have warning symptoms, called an aura, before the actual headache begins. An aura is a group of symptoms, including vision disturbances, that are a warning sign that a bad headache is coming.
I get migraines.
I get them in clusters lasting 3-4 days, usually once a month. I am currently in the midst of a cycle of migraine. I’m on day three and have already taken more than the recommended daily dose of my triptan. I’m contemplating another dose, just to get through the day. While husband works on the movie score, son is napping and daughter is watching Toy Story, I sit here in front of my laptop trying to focus on something other than the tip of the knife I can feel starting to tickle my left eyeball. The migraines used to migrate – sometimes the pain would be behind my right eye, sometimes on the side of my head, sometimes behind the left eye. For the last few years though, the migraines have been pretty consistent – behind the left eye. I don’t get aura, but sometimes a tension headache starts and it “transforms” into the migraine. I do get nauseated, and loud noises bother me. Usually a dark room, cold compress and sleep help. But more often the not, I just need to get through the 3-4 days, then the cycle breaks and I’m good for a month.
The only time I can remember when I didn’t get a migraine for a good stretch of time was during my pregnancies. The first three months were brutal, I got lots of them and since I couldn’t take the triptan, I would have to resort to ice-cold showers (which work amazingly well, I might add). But a switch flipped during the second trimester and I would be headache free until about a month postpartum. Those 7 months were the best!! It was one of the reasons I loved being pregnant – the migraines stopped.