Can you feel it! It starts perhaps with strange flashes or blotches around your eyesight, or with a vice-like tightness or dull pain around your head, or an awful stiffness in your neck and shoulders. The onset may come on quickly and you feel a thumping and pounding somewhere inside your head. Or it may start very slowing and a little niggly for a day or so and then descend you into the deep depths of the full-fledged “migraine zone”. These are just some symptoms of a migraine headache.

If you have suffered from multiple migraines over a period of time, like me, there might be some telling signs prior to the onset of your migraine headache that you are all too familiar with. These awful migraine headache symptoms may change or intensify throughout the course of your migraine headache, as not every migraine will feel the same.

Some migraines will last for a few hours and some can last for a few days. There is just no way to tell what the expected duration will be. There is no way to tell in the beginning stages of a migraine headache exactly how intense the pain will get or how long the symptoms and pain may last. We just all have to wait it out and hope for the best that it will go away quickly.

The Onset – How Do You Feel Before a Migraine?

How do you feel as a migraine headache starts to come on? Some mild symptoms may start a while before the full effects of a migraine are present. Sometimes you may feel tired and lethargic before the onset. You may not even be aware of your symptoms. In some cases of a migraine, there is not always a pounding head pain, prior to or during, the actual migraine itself. But knowing your symptoms, and being aware of your past history with migraines can be helpful in your own “migraine management”.

Every person is not the same when it comes to migraines. Not every person will have the same symptoms before a migraine and not every migraine headache will have the same feeling and intensity each time you have one. So its easy to understand that the story will not be the same for every migraine sufferer.

I know that there have been times that I have felt kind of foggy (not very alert) and irritable. Temperament may be a good indication that your body is out of sorts before you descend into the deeper “migraine zone”.

Some Symptoms of a Migraine Headache are…

  • Feeling overly tired and irritable
  • A dull consistent head pain
  • Throbbing pain in one area of the head
  • Stiff or tight feeling in the shoulders, neck or face
  • Blocked and sensitive sinuses
  • A pain at the back of the eyes
  • Eyes can feel very sensitive to light
  • Vision is blotchy, sometimes with flashes of light
  • Sensitivity to a lot of sounds
  • Dizziness and sometimes vertigo
  • Feelings of nausea and sometimes vomiting

Is a Headache a Migraine?

Migraine headache symptomsDo you sometimes question if this is just a headache or is this the onset of a migraine? If you get a headache and you are unsure but you are prone to migraines, I personally think it is best to treat it as you would a migraine.

If you have some techniques or remedies that you have come to use for your migraine management”, then use these and hopefully, these will prevent your headache from escalating into a full-blown migraine headache or even help you reduce the severity of a headache or a migraine, whichever it may turn out to be.

Have a look at your migraine history and see if headaches are a normal part of your past migraine onset. You can then look at your chosen natural remedies towards migraine prevention or migraine pain management.

My Migraine Symptoms

Personally, I have had most of the symptoms listed above at one time or another. I can tell you that I have the symptoms of zigzag lines that flash around the side of my eyes, tightness and tiredness in neck and head and sometimes an intense pain at the back of one of my eyes and a pain sometimes that is deep behind my eyebrow.

tired-migraine-sleepingAs I descend deeper into a strong migraine it can also be followed by the feeling of a nauseous stomach and intense sinus pain. All I could do to help myself was take strong medication, which would make me feel even more nauseous, lay down and try to go off to sleep, and hope that when I wake up my migraine would be gone! This was not always the case.

But I didn’t always know that these were migraines and there have been times when I have thought perhaps something else is wrong so I have followed up with a check-up to my health care professional to seek advice on what could be the cause of all these migraine headaches along with the other symptoms I was having. I did have a number of tests, some MRI scans, blood tests and multiple other tests to rule out anything else that could be causing these symptoms.

As painful as migraines are, there was a sense of relief after the doctors’ test to know that these were migraines and that I could then look into alternatives to deal with my consistent migraine headache problem.

What are YOUR Symptoms of a Migraine Headache?

Migraines can be tricky to diagnose at first as the symptoms themselves are related to many other ailments. Seeing your Healthcare professional is a good start.

Keeping a log or a “migraine diary” of all your headache and migraine symptoms can help you understand better what to look for in both situations. It will help you look into and find what works for you and what doesn’t work for you. There is no “one shoe fits all” migraine headache cure out here.

But if you learn to look for the signs of your migraine, and know what natural options and remedies are available, then you can work towards finding a really great “migraine headache – management and prevention plan” that works for you.


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  1. After suffering 3 strokes at the age of 38, I’ve learned never to ignore migraines. Before my first stroke I had a serious migrained all day long from when I woke up to when I went to bed – it lasted a month.

    I know many people suffer from migraines as a disorder all on its own, but anyone suffering from chronic migraines should really be checked out to make sure it isn’t a symptom of a larger problem. Great article.

    • I am so glad you enjoyed my posts on migraines. 

      I fully agree with you that it is important to see your health care professional to ensure that the cause of the migraine headaches can be looked into and that you do not have another underlying health problem. 

      I felt relief myself to find out from my Doctor that the head pain and other symptoms I was dealing with didn’t come from any other ailment. This then enabled me to research what can be done to help my migraines.

      Thank you for your very important feedback.

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