June is National Migraine and Headache Awareness Month (MHAM). It is crucial to raise awareness about migraines and other headache diseases, as migraines effect 40 million people in the United States and 1 billion people across the world. Migraines are the second cause of disability worldwide. An estimated 16 million people with migraines in the U.S. are undiagnosed. This year MHAM is focusing on the theme, A New Era of Care and the impact of COVID-19 on individuals with migraines and other headache diseases.
During the COVID-19 pandemic telemedicine rose to popularity. “According to a survey by the Headache and Migraine Policy Forum and MigraineAgain, 78% of migraine and headache patients used telemedicine after the start of the pandemic, in comparison to just 22% before the pandemic” (National Headache Foundation). Telemedicine gives people the option to receive care from the comfort and convivence of their homes. This is important because the previous survey also revealed that “there has been a nearly 70% rise in the number of migraine attacks during the pandemic and 84% of people have more stress managing their disease” (National Headache Foundation).
A migraine is a headache, varying in intensity, that can cause severe throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation, usually on one side of the head. A migraine is often accompanied by the symptoms of nausea, vomiting, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine attacks can interfere with one’s ability to complete tasks of daily living. Additionally, they can last for hours to days. Migraines are commonly undiagnosed and untreated. It is important to make an appointment with a doctor immediately to discuss treatment options.
1. Mayo Clinic Staff. “Migraine.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2 July 2021, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/migraine-headache/symptoms-causes/syc-20360201.
2. “National Migraine & Headache Awareness Month - 2021.” National Headache Foundation, National Headache Foundation, https://headaches.org/national-migraine-headache-awareness-month-2021/.