Every September, a week is assigned to raising awareness and reducing the stigma surrounding migraines. While the general public is aware of the health condition, and have somewhat of an understanding of what they are, the awareness and understanding could be improved. A lack of awareness of this public health issue can seriously affect lives, with not enough of us realising what it means to live with this condition.
This year the Migraine Awareness Week is running from the 6th-12th September and is a moment where those effected by migraines and those working toward helping those affected, can work together in raising awareness of the health issue as a neurological condition, and step away from the idea of them being ‘just a headache’.
#GiveUpForMigraine is a campaign that the Migraine Trust runs where they try to encourage people to make pledges during Migraine Awareness Week. This campaign allows friends and family of those who suffer from migraines to show their support and to raise funds for the migraine awareness cause. Part of this campaign includes encouraging people to give up something they would normally enjoy doing and instead donate the money they save.
What is a migraine?
Usually, a migraine is a severe headache that feels like a throbbing pain on one side of the head, people who suffer from them can also get symptoms including nausea, increased light and sound sensitivity, and sickness. Migraines affect 1 out of every 5 women, and 1 out every 15 men and they commonly start in early adulthood.
Everyone who suffers from migraines may have different experiences but those who suffer from migraines regularly can experience them multiple times a week, whereas other people may only experience them once or twice in their lifetime. The exact cause of migraines is not known, although it is suspected that they could be a result of temporary changes in the brain’s chemicals, nerves and blood vessels. It is also known that at least half of the people who suffer from migraines, also have a relative who suffers from the condition, which reveals the possibility of genes being involved. There can also be triggers that are associated with migraines, such as starting your period, stress, certain foods, and tiredness.
Although there is no cure for migraines, there are certain treatments that can ease symptoms such as taking painkillers, triptans or anti-emetics. When people suffer from a migraine it has been found that lying down in a dark room can also help.
Migraine Awareness Week helps to raise awareness of this health condition, as it can severely affect a persons life and even stop them from being able to complete normal daily activities such as getting out of bed. Use this Migraine Awareness Week to build on your knowledge surrounding this health condition and do what you can to support the cause.