Among the most common migraine symptoms people experience beyond headache are nausea, vomiting, blurred and or disturbed vision, diarrhea, and cold hands and feet. Many migraine sufferers will also have profound sensitivity to both light and sounds.
The migraine headache is often only experienced on one side of the head, although pain in the back of the head and neck are also common. Migraines often alternate between sides of the head that are affected between migraine episodes. For example, one migraine will cause pain on the left side of the head, the next migraine the right.
It is estimated that 50% of migraines will begin with warning signs such as extreme tiredness, cravings for sweet or salty foods, irritability, and depression. These warning symptoms can last for a number of hours and sometimes days. Once these begin both the migraine sufferers and their family will know that a migraine attack is imminent.
When the warning signs begin the person can prepare for an attack by taking action to either stop the migraine from developing or reducing the severity of the attack. There are many prescription drugs available which can be taken at the onset of an attack as well as alternative remedies. Most people will go and find somewhere quiet to lay down, usually a darkened room as the sensitivity to both light and sound increases as the attack begins.
For many people these sensations can become intense, to such an extent that even the sound of someone else talking quietly and the merest spot of light can increase the pain dramatically. This can be frustrating for people who are trying to help.
For people who have been having migraines for many years the symptoms can cause as much anxiety as the attack itself, particularly if they are at a location where they are unable to find the facilities needed to cope with vomiting, diarrhea, and light sensitivity. Another problem, there are many people who do not appreciate, understand or realize just how debilitating a migraine attack and the migraine symptoms can be. This may cause people to try to work through the pain. This can increase the severity of the pain, especially if the pain goes untreated. A person who must continue to work in spite of having a headache should take a pain reliever and attempt to relax as much as possible. Of course, it is always best to find a place to lie down. Sleep performs wonders.
It is important to understand that headaches can be brought on by other factors than tension. Headaches can result from sugar imbalance, tiredness, caffeine withdrawal, and more chronic problems. In these cases, it is best to treat the source of the problems and in severe cases, see a physician.