If you get migraine headaches, you may be at risk for heart attack, stroke, and other health conditions. Find out more to protect your health.
If you are one of the people with migraines, you already know that these headaches can cause pain, misery, and missed days from work, but you may not know that a growing body of research suggests they may also increase your risk for other conditions including :
Depression and Anxiety. When it comes to the relationship between migraine and psychological illnesses such as depression and anxiety, the migraine is both the chicken and the egg, says Dr Winnie Sharon Lim Khoo, a neurologist.
Cardiovascular Disease. Up to one-third of people with migraineexperience an aura preceding their headache — some type of visual disturbance such as flashing lights or a temporary loss of vision. Some research shows that migraine with aura may put you at greater risk for cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke. One study, also presented at the 2013 American Academy of Neurology meeting, looked at data on more than 27,000 women participating in The Women’s Health Study and found that it was one of the top risk factors for heart disease and stroke among women, second only to high blood pressure.
Epilepsy. Both migraine and the seizure disorder epilepsy are characterized by brain excitability, says Dr Winnie Lim Khoo “Whichever you have first, whether epilepsy or migraine, you are twice as likely to get the other,”.
Allergies. If you have nasal allergies, you may be more likely to also get migraines, Dr Lim Khoo explains. The reason is that the trigeminal nerve, which is involved in causing migraine also supplies the nasal mucosa. “Nasal allergies occur when there is irritation or inflammation of the nerve by allergens which leads to itchy, runny nose,”