Experiencing Migraines? It May Be Time to See a Neurologist
(AscendHealthy.com) – Headaches are common. Most people experience them occasionally, while others experience them regularly. They are complex and can be associated with various causes and treatments, such as sleep disorders, hypermobility syndrome, neck pains, etc., which may call for treatment plans beyond what a primary care doctor can offer.
Headache neurologists can differentiate a migraine from a tension-type headache and all other head pains that may fail to respond to the headache medications commonly used by non-headache specialists. They can suggest the most appropriate comprehensive approaches to non-medication and medication therapies.
When to See a Neurologist for Migraines
Most people consult family doctors, especially for non-severe headaches. If their recommended medication treatment doesn’t work well or leads to the development of unusual symptoms, it would be prudent to visit a neurologist who specializes in the nervous system and brain disorders.
Possible signs that call for a neurologist include:
1. Frequent headaches
If headaches come two or more times per week, you may need additional preventive medication added to your treatment plan. Your neurologist may also want to take a look at the underlying cause.
2. Headache gets worse with time and treatment.
Treatments are meant to relieve pain and make someone feel better with time. If the headache persists or worsens upon treatment, it signals for further tests and consultations with a neurologist.
3. A headache accompanied by neurological symptoms.
According to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, neurological symptoms such as a seizure or general weakness in some parts of the body may result from a brain tumor and causes severe headache.
4. Headache resulting from the head injury
The American Migraine Foundation emphasizes that headaches that begin from head injuries may indicate post-traumatic headache (PTH), which requires more advanced treatments than other common headaches.
5. Headaches not responding to prescription drugs or recommended OTC treatments.
Taking headache drugs for more than 10 days per month may increase the risks of developing rebound headache (commonly known as medication-overuse headache). This type of headache is hard to treat and calls for a specialist.
6. You are Over 50 with Chronic Headaches
Chronic headache in someone older than 50 increases the risk of developing other secondary disorders, such as stroke.
Doctors can determine the possible cause of headaches, but only neurologists have the right tools and tests to treat or diagnoses their root causes. If you are suffering from extreme or frequent headaches that may be accompanied by other symptoms, it is always advisable to visit your reliable neurologist.
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