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Most people who do not know much about migraines share a common misconception that a migraine is “just a headache”.

Read on to clear up any misconceptions you may have surrounding the topic of migraines and to find out more about a common health condition that affects 1 in every 5 women and 1 in every 15 men.

It is the third most common disease in the world and is more prevalent than diabetes, epilepsy and asthma combined.

Research suggests that 3000 migraine attacks occur every day for each million of the general population, which equates to over 190000 migraine attacks every day in the UK.

Migraine is a complex condition consisting of a variety of symptoms as detailed in the image below:

Migraines come in various shapes and sizes. The most common types of migraine fall into two categories:

> Migraine with aura
> Migraine without aura

Not everyone will have a ‘typical’ migraine and the experience is unique to the individual. They generally have four to five stages which are outlined below:

There is no known cause for migraine, although most people with it are genetically predisposed to migraine. If you are susceptible to migraine there are certain triggers which commonly occur. These include stress, lack of food, alcohol, hormonal changes in women, lack of sleep and the environment.

Due to its complex nature, the treatments available are varied and differ from person to person. If you feel you may be suffering from migraines, come into the pharmacy and speak to the pharmacist who will be able to advise you or speak to your GP.

For more information visit which is the largest research and support charity for people affected by migraine in the UK.

Visit for more information on migraines.

A great article written by Ria Bhola, Headache Nurse Specialist can be accessed by visiting: