Emergency Care for Urgent Situations: Migraines
Migraines are usually a moderate or severe headache that is felt as a throbbing or pulsing pain, usually on one side of the head. Most cases a migraine is accompanied by an extreme sensitivity to light as well as nausea and vomiting in other circumstances. Migraines can be debilitating and can be reoccurring and could even last for hours to days. This could interfere with your daily activities including getting in the way of your job. Given that most people are less inclined to go to the emergency room and the found such trips daunting, many decide to tough it out, with rest and over-the-counter medications and hope to come out the other side of their migraine. It is however important to note that not all migraines are born equal as though there are those you can grit your teeth through, there are others that may require emergency care, especially if your migraine is not improving with treatment. Sometimes a migraine may be a sign of something more serious and as such you need to get yourself attended to as soon as you can. This article will therefore look to highlight some of the urgent situations as far as migraines are concerned and how to not only identify them but also how to react to them.
Even though most of the time migraines are usually debilitating and painful, if you are experiencing what you feel is the worst headache you have ever experienced, then you should seek emergency care as soon as you can. There are a number of factors you can look at that will help you judge the severity of the pain including such things as the duration of the pain, severity of the pain, if the migraine is not responding to medication, if the migraine came on suddenly and out of seemingly nowhere and so forth. If the pain is the worst you have ever experienced, seek emergency care by calling 911 as you may not be in a position to drive yourself to an emergency room. You may also want to seek emergency care by calling 911 if your migraine is persistent and is not responding to medication as mentioned above; something that is referred to as an unbreakable migraine attack. This is because, such a migraine may be as a result of something more serious and as such it is important that you are assessed so that you can begin to receive treatment.
Another thing to do if you are experiencing a severe migraine is to check if you have any accompanying symptoms to go with it, and especially if they are new symptoms you haven’t experienced before. This is because your pain may actually not be due to a migraine attack but a sign of a more serious medical condition. Some of the red flags to look out for include fever, a stiff neck, confusion, problems with your speech or vision, memory loss, severe dizzy spells, numbness, chest pain or pressure, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing, body weakness especially on one side of the body, paralysis, a loss of consciousness, vomiting and diarrhea that is persistent or seizures among other serious symptoms. If you are presenting with any of these symptoms to go with your migraine, then you should seek emergency care by calling 911 as soon as possible. This is because this is a sign that you may be suffering from a number of serious and potentially life-threatening conditions such as stroke, meningitis, and brain aneurysms among others, which should always be taken very seriously. You should also take note of all your symptoms so that you can be able to tell the emergency personnel and enable them to start treatment as soon as they can.
You should also ask yourself if your pain may be a result of other circumstances or injuries which may also require you to seek emergency care. Head pain is not always as a result of a migraine attack as it could be a sign of another issue. For instance, if you begin to experience head pain and you may have suffered a trauma to the head recently, then it could be a sign of concussion or traumatic brain injury and not a migraine attack. If this is the case, then you should head over to an emergency room as possible to be assessed and treated. Remember, even injuries to the head and neck that may appear small could have an impact to your brain so never taken any situation lightly. If you begin to experience what appears to be a migraine after you made changes in your medication regimen, say you have begun taking a new drug, then you should also seek medical attention as the head pain may be as a result of drug interactions which should always be taken seriously. You should also seek emergency care if you are experiencing a migraine and are pregnant, especially if you are in the third trimester. While headaches may be normal during pregnancies, migraines and severe head pains are not and could be a sign of serious medical conditions such as preeclampsia which should be taken very seriously.
Hopefully, through this article you can be able to know when and how to proceed in urgent situations concerning migraines so as you can avoid any unwanted consequences.