There are several risk factors that increase an individuals chance of getting a migraine.
Vulnerability to migraines can be genetic: 70 to 80 percent of migraine sufferers have a close family member who also has migraines. Further, children have a 50 percent chance of getting migraines if one of their parents do, and a 75 percent chance if both of their parents parents do.
Women are also at a greater risk. They are three times more likely to receive migraines than men, especially during periods of increased estrogen production. After menopause, a woman is significantly less likely to receive a migraine resulting from hormone production.
A variety of other risk factors exist, including but are not limited to: taking too much medication, an issue with one’s environment, irregular sleep habits, stress, changing weather and poor diet.
According to the International Headache Society, regular headaches are considered migraines when they bring high levels of pain, occur repeatedly, and attack anywhere beyond 4 hours.
There is no definitive cure for migraines because they are still not fully understood. Modern migraine treatment either works with a patient to prevent attacks or helps the patient manage the pain. Migraines have a variety of causes and every patient responds to treatments differently. To see the kinds of treatment we offer at the American Migraine Center, visit our treatment options page. Our physicians will work with you to decide what course of treatment is most appropriate.
Effectiveness varies from patient to patient depending on their responsiveness to medication, lifestyle and other factors. Seeking treatment is very important for sufferers. Repeated migraines alter an afflicted individual’s brain chemistry, and leave the sufferer even more vulnerable to future attacks. Treatment not only helps reset this process, but also dulls or eliminates the patient’s pain. If a sufferer goes untreated, migraines can escalate significantly: even becoming daily occurrences.
Our patient-focused treatment is our standard treatment and is usually attempted first with a good rate of success. This treatment works to prevent migraines by identifying risk factors in the sufferer’s life that may be the source of their migraines, and supplements this with medication when appropriate.
If a patient has not responded to traditional medical or infusion treatment, migraine surgery may be necessary. Ask your neurologist about the treatment, they will be able to best advise you of its necessity.