What is a migraine? Why migraine happens. Who gets migraines? Treating migraines.

Migraine Headache Symptoms

The symptoms of an impending migraine attack vary wildly from one person to the next. Some migraine sufferers experience no symptoms at all before an attack and the migraine arrives with no warning. This is what is commonly known as a migraine without aura (common). Other migraine sufferers experience several different types of warning signs (aura) prior to the actual headache itself. These are known as classic migraines (with aura).

Migraine Symptoms

Normally a person will suffer from either classic or common migraines although it has been known for the type of migraine to shift around. Sometimes people expecting aura before an attack receive no warning at all and vice versa. Migraines are unpredictable at the best of times.

Regardless of the type of migraine you have there's quite a long list of symptoms that you can watch out for:

* Dull ache in jaw, neck or back of head

* Dull pain in eye socket or forehead

* Temporary loss of vision in one eye

* Blurred vision in one or both eyes

* Smelling strange odors (non-existent)

* Visual hallucination

* Audio hallucination (hearing things which aren't there)

* Unexpected nausea

* Increased sensitivity to light

* Experiencing pain while moving (standing up or sitting down)

* Lack of hand-eye co-ordination

* Mild loss of balance

* Difficulty speaking

* Loss of focused thought

* Extreme tiredness

* Weakness in one or both arms and legs

* Temporary motor paralysis on one side of your body (rare)


My own migraines fall into two classes. I have a mild migraine which starts just behind my jaw and works it's way forward to my temple. These can be slept off with the aid of some painkillers in two to three hours. The more severe migraine starts in my eye socket and spreads to most of my head. These require overnight bed rest and normally leave me very, very drained for 24 - 48 hours aftwards.

Learn your symptoms. You need to be familiar with the type of attack you're about to experience and do as much as you can to prevent it from becoming a major attack. This includes medication, rest and a darkended room in the early moments or hours of any migraine episode.