Migraines can be debilitating and can also greatly impact the quality of your life. DCND sees many patients dealing with headaches and migraines that re-occur often.

There are many treatments available. Including:

  • Botulinum Toxin Injections
  • Medication
  • SPG Block

Headaches & Migraines

Migraine symptoms

A migraine is a type of headache that typically comes on abruptly and is moderate to severe in intensity. They have other symptoms associated with them such as:

  • nausea
  • visual or sensory disturbance
  • light sensitivity
  • pain behind one eye
  • pain in the temples
  • sound sensitivity 
  • odor sensitivity
    Migraine aura

    Some people experience an “aura” before their migraine. These occur for about 5-60 minutes prior to the migraine starting. Some patients may not experience the head pain following the aura, and this is more common in individuals over the age of 50.

    Auras can be characterized by visual or sensory disturbance.

    Visual Symptoms

    • Blind spots (scotomas)
    • Zigzag lines that float across your vision
    • Shimmering spots or stars
    • Blurred vision or vision loss
    • Flashes of light

    Other disturbances

    • Numbness – typically described as tingling
    • Speech or language difficulties
    • Muscle weakness
    • Vertigo
    Other types of headaches

    Tension headaches- This is the most common type of headache. It is typically mild to moderate and located across the forehead or in the back of the head and neck. It has been described as a tight band around the forehead. Women are more likely to get these types of headaches. There are several triggers such as stress, dehydration, screen time and alcohol. 

    Cluster headaches- Considered one of the most severe headache types. This typically is a recurrent headache that is sharp pain in one eye. It commonly wakes people up during sleep. It comes on for weeks at a time and then abates. Associated with autonomic features such as tearing of the same eye, congestion of the nose, redness of the same eye. This type of headache is rare, but more common in men. Treatment is different than migraine medications.

    Thunderclap headaches- These come on acutely and are typically described as “the worst headache of my life”. They are intensely painful and could indicate a severe medical issue that needs immediate attention such as an aneurysm or stroke. 

    Sinus headaches- These headaches can be confused with a migraine. They cause pressure and are usually associated with other sinus symptoms such as a significant nasal drainage or congestion. Many times, patients will believe they have sinus headaches, when they are actually suffering from migraines.


    Migraine treatments comes in two different forms: 

    Abortive: Dr. Megan Mackenzie says these are what you take when you want the headache gone immediately. It’s taken during the onset of the migraine.  They include over-the-counter medication or prescription injections and medication. Your doctor will determine what one best suits your needs.

    Preventive: This type of treatment is for people who experience migraine symptoms for more than four days a month. They could include a daily oral medication or injection of botulium toxin which can help block pain signals to the brain. 


    Knowing when your migraines occur and what might bring them on is an important part in managing them. Possible triggers include:

    • weather changes
    • hormones
    • alcohol or caffeine 
    • certain foods
    • genetics
    • lack of sleep
    • anxiety and stress
    • skipping meals
      Chronic migraines

      You could be diagnosed with chronic migraines if you have more than 15 headaches with at least 8 migraine days per month. This condition can greatly impact your quality of life. Our neurologists can help you develop a treatment plan to manage them. 

      10 Tips For Keeping Your Headaches Away

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      Thank you for giving us the opportunity to care for you or your family. We are the regions top provider in patient services caring for spinal, brain and neurological disorders. DCND is accepting new patients on a referral basis only. Please contact your primary care physician or another specialist to request a referral to our office. They can do that through their Electronic Health Record System or they can fax us at 937-439-5462. Our physicians see patients by appointment only at several locations.


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