Pain, while the most common and often most debilitating symptom of migraine, is far from the only one — especially for those of us suffering from transformed migraine (also known as chronic daily headache). Other symptoms include fatigue, burred vision, problems concentrating or lack of focus, trouble sleeping or nonrestorative sleep (awaking feeling tired), vertigo, weakness, and others.
There is no cure.
My friends, I believe, have often felt that I’ve ditched them when I’ve sent a last-minute text message saying, “I’ve got a bad migraine, I’m sorry I can’t make it out tonight.” I’m sure it didn’t help that until a few years ago I didn’t fully understand that what I had was migraine disease and switched between the term “headache” and “migraine” casually. But trust me when I say I would have rather been out having fun all those times than lying on the couch feeling like my skull was turning into liquid.
You’re probably reading this because you suffer from episodic or transformed migraine, or perhaps cluster headaches or another type of migraine (episodic migraine means you have 15 or fewer migraine days per month; transformed/chronic migraine means you have more than 15). According to the National Migraine Awareness Group’s website, 32 million Americans suffer from migraine. So even if you don’t have migraines yourself, it’s likely that you know someone who does.
This blog aims toward a more “literary”/personal tone in handling migraine disease, but I also urge you to do further research on the scientific and medical aspects, especially because the disease is so little understood, and you will hear lots of conflicting views. Here are some great places to start:
- About.com Headaches and Migraines
- American Headache and Migraine Association (USA)
- Health Central: My Migraine Connection
- Help for Headaches and Migraine Disease
- Mayo Clinic Migraine Page
- Migraine.com (Includes a community forum, guest blog posts, and “migraine stories”)
- Migraine Survival
- The Migraine Trust (UK)
- The National Migraine Association (USA)
- PubMed Health Article on Migraine
- WebMD Headaches and Migraine Center