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When Migraines Attack: How to Stop Them Before They Start

The word is out: Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann suffers from occasional migraines and she’s not alone. Millions of people have to deal with the pounding, pain and sensitivity to light and sound. Migraines not only cause pain and suffering but also can cause people to miss days at work- bad news for Miss Bachmann, because the President doesn’t get sick days.

The letter released from her doctor states that she is aware of her triggers. Examples of migraine triggers can be hormone-related (pre- or post-menopause), stress, too much exercise, warm weather and strong smells. Food and drink triggers included things like aged cheeses such as blue cheese, feta, mozzarella and Parmesan, red wines and certain liquors. Tyramine is the culprit and is a chemical substance that is contained in both. You might also be able to blame your migraines on your Mom or Dad because they are sometimes hereditary. There has also been a possible link drawn between obesity and increased occurrence of migraines.

Congresswoman Bachmann was diagnosed with “migraines with aura”, which are  migraines accompanied by spots in vision and possibly temporary vision loss. The aura usually appears 20 minutes to an hour before the migraine itself. Patients usually experience throbbing pain in one or both temples, have difficulty dealing with strong odors, like perfumes or cologne, and excessive light or noise, accompanied by some form of nausea, vomiting, or dizziness.


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