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Myths and Facts January 2017


                                      Week of January 13, 2017 - Migraines

Perception/Myth: If you don’t see flashing lights, or an “aura” it isn’t a migraine.


  • Aura" is a broad term for how a migraine affects your senses before or during a headache. Not everybody has one.  Those who do might see flashing  lights, spots, or wavy or jagged lines. Auras can also make your ears ring, the way things taste, smell, or feel, or just give you an overall funny feeling. They can last from 15 minutes to an hour.

Perception/Myth: You feel migraines on only one side of your head.

Answer/Fact: Correct

  • Unlike most other headaches, migraines usually strike on one side of your head. But they don't always stay still. The pain can move from side to side. Most people describe the pain as throbbing or pounding.
  • Migraines can start any time of the day or they can wake you up in the middle of the night. They can last 4 hours or longer. A really bad migraine can last as long as a week.

Perception/Myth: Light or noise are the only migraine triggers.
Answer/Myth: Wrong.

  • Everyone has different migraine triggers. Some common ones are:
    • Strong smells, like perfumes and detergents, hormonal changes, bright or fluorescent lights, stress or fatigue, too much or too little sleep, some medications like birth control pills, weather changes, cold triggers like ice cream and certain foods.

For additional information, please visit:
U.S. Department of health and Human Servoces (CDC). Web MD