If you thought migraines are just headaches, update your information – they have been classified by the World Health Organization as one of the top 20 causes of disability world-wide. A 2011 WHO report opines that they are a greatly-misunderstood, underrated disorder that causes people to postpone, limit or give-up work entirely during attacks.
Nearly 4% of the population suffers migraines 15+ days in a month.
Migraine is different from other types of headache – tension, cluster, eye/sinus/flue-related etc. They vary in severity/intensity/duration and could have different causes. Migraines can ruin your relationships, career and well-being.
Read on for some little-known facts about migraine.
1: Is Migraine a Disease?
The WHO report states that headaches are ubiquitous, prevalent, disabling and manageable. But they’re under-reported, under-diagnosed and under-treated. They result in huge financial costs to society.
Migraines are genetic/neurological diseases, with no known cure. Attacks can be as disabling as quadriplegia, and though the causes are poorly-understood, research reveals that there’s a large genetic component leading to overly-sensitive neurons in the brain that fire in waves when they encounter certain triggers.
Were you aware that migraine has been classified as a disease?
2: Headaches Tell Only Part of the Story
Migraine does cause headaches, but not always! Migraine attacks can be “silent” or “acephagic” accompanied by nausea/vomiting, heightened sensitivity to lights/sounds/smells/touch, problems with concentration, vision, speech, language, hearing, extreme fatigue, dizziness, fluid-retention and many more symptoms. Once it’s recognized as a “disease” it becomes easier to address the management and treatment parameters.
Migraines can be so disabling that many sufferers qualify for Social Security disability benefits and other medical support benefits.
Have you experienced “silent” or other types of migraines?