1- Migraine is a genetic neurological disease- It is known that migraine is caused due to a number of genes although all of them have not been fully classified. Many people tend to known someone in their family who also has migraine. In some forms of migraine, the genes are known, including Familial Hemiplegic Migraine.
2- Migraine is very common- According to the World Health Organization, migraine is more common than asthma and diabetes combined. It affects about 10% of the world’s population. In the United States, about 36 million people are affected by migraine.
3- Migraine is triggered by environmental or internal factors- Some of the most common triggers are stress, poor sleep and hormonal changes. Many people find it difficult to find their triggers but a headache diary can be helpful.
4- Migraine is associated with a number of other illnesses- Those with migraine have a higher chance of having other illnesses, like anxiety, depression or gastrointestinal issues like inflammatory bowel disease.
5- Migraine can increase your risk of a stroke- Many studies have now proven that migraine, especially the subtype known as migraine with aura, can increase the risk of stroke as well as other cardiovascular issues, like heart attack.
6- Migraine can be very disabling- Many people who develop severe and frequent attacks from migraine can find it very disabling. Some people may have to quit their job or spend previous time away from friends and family due to the symptoms of their migraine attacks.
7- Migraine is more than just a headache- There are many symptoms that can affect people who have migraine, some can have migraine symptoms and not even get headaches! Some of the most common symptoms include, nausea, sensitivity to light, sound, trouble thinking or concentrating. Other symptoms can also include seeing visual spots, numbness, trouble speaking and even weakness on one side of the body.
8- Migraine cannot be cured- Unfortunately there is no cure for migraine but there are many ways to decrease the severity and frequency of your migraine attacks. There are mediations as well as lifestyle modifications that can be very helpful.
9- Migraine is not “all in your head.”- This is not true at all. Migraine is a real disease with real symptoms. There are studies that show that people with migraine have changes in their brains that are unique to them, showing that migraine is a real disease rooted in the brain.
10- Migraine does not only affects adults- Migraine can affect children and adolescents in addition to adults. It is most prevalent during the age of 25-45 and is 3-4 times more common in women than men.