Migraines are more prevalent than diabetes, asthma, and epilepsy combined. They are the third most common disease in the world, coming in after dental cavities and tension headaches. Approximately one out of every seven people has migraines. Chronic migraines (those that occur more than 15 days in a month’s time) affect around two percent of the population around the globe.
Women are three times more likely to get migraines than men, possibly due to hormone fluctuations. More than 75 percent of those with migraines have at least one attack per month and more than 50 percent are extremely disabled during an attack. Migraines often start during puberty but can also be seen in young children and infants. Most commonly, migraines affect those in the age range of 25 to 50.
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The Burden of Migraines
Migraines are the leading cause of disability among neurological disorders. They are ranked as the seventh most disabling disease among all other diseases. The average person who has migraines spends 5.3 percent of their time suffering with them.
Severe attacks are classified, according to the World Health Organization, as among the most disabling illnesses similar to quadriplegia, psychosis, and dementia. They are the second most common cause of short-term absence from work for non-manual employees. Depression is three times more common in people with migraines or severe headaches than in those that do not suffer from these conditions.
How Migraines Impact Finances
According to Sarah Hackley, a writer and editor located in Austin, Texas, migraines can feel like someone is jamming an ice pick into your temple and, at the same time, dropping an anvil on your head. She experiences a migraine at least twice a week, sometimes every day. She has even experienced migraines that lasted for two years! She was forced to quit her job and begin working part-time at home. She has spent thousands of dollars going to various experts all over the country to try to find answers for her head pain. This has caused her to be unable to save for retirement. She says that migraines really do influence what people can and cannot do while they are having an attack, impacting their lives and their finances negatively.
Clinical director of the Comprehensive Headache Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Brookline, Massachusetts reports that a big part of what people are suffering from is not only the pain but also the huge toll it takes on your life and your finances. Many people use their vacation time from work to rest from their migraines, preventing them from ever being able to advance their careers or truly go on vacation.
Because of the huge number of people impacted, the 113 million lost days of work, $13 billion in costs to employers, and $50 billion in annual health care costs, migraines can really cause distress for people who suffer from them and employers too.
Migraines can have a bearing on you at different stages in your career. A student’s education can be affected, which causes some to drop out. Migraines cause problems mainly in your prime years of earning potential by hampering promotions and productivity. In your golden years, the pain of migraines may force you to take an early retirement. This sets people up for a lifetime of underachievement, according to Dr. Richard Lipton, vice chairman of neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New York.
Some Tips to Mitigate the Cost of Migraines
Getting care for your migraines is of vital importance. Many feel like they have to just learn to deal with pain. However, there is a natural, cost-effective way to help migraines that we will discuss next. For now, let’s see what you personally can do.
- Avoid triggers: There are certain things that may trigger migraines. Some common culprits are missing meals, irregular sleep patterns, drinking alcohol, taking too much medication to care for migraines, and certain foods. Keeping a migraine journal will help you determine what these are for you.
- Start up a medical savings account: This can help cover healthcare costs, deductibles, co-pays, and medication costs.
- Protect yourself: Ask your doctor for a letter to give to your Human Resources department so that you will not get penalized for having migraines.
Finding Reliable Help for Migraines
The best way to alleviate the financial and physical stress of migraines is to get to the underlying problem itself and try to correct it. It has been observed that a misalignment in the bones of the upper cervical spine is often the root cause of migraines. The C1 and C2 vertebrae are susceptible to misaligning due to their location and mobility. They are the bones that allow the head to have such a great range of motion, making it easy for these bones to move out of place with just a minor blow to the head or an overextension of the neck muscles.
A misalignment of these bones can put pressure on the brainstem, causing it to send improper signals to the brain. The nerves and muscles of the neck can also become irritated and inflamed, leading to head pain. Another problem lies in the bones themselves, obstructing the flow of cerebrospinal fluid and oxygen-rich blood to the brain. All of these can lead to severe and reoccurring migraines.
Here at Balanced Living Chiropractic in Rochester Hills, Michigan, we use a gentle method to encourage these bones to move back into place. We are not required to pop or crack the spine to get positive results. Rather, the natural process we implement results in a longer-lasting solution. It has been observed that many people see a huge improvement in their migraines, sometimes in as little as 1 or 2 adjustments.
To schedule a complimentary NUCCA consultation, call 248-831-0729 or just click the button below.
If you are outside of the local area, you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.