People suffering from migraines can feel throbbing pain which can range from mild to severe pain that can interfere with your daily activities. Migraine attacks can give off a signal before it can occur, such as seeing flashes of light, blind spots or tingling on one side of your face. An ordinary headache can only last for a few minutes or an hour at least, but a migraine attack can last for hours to days.
Migraines don’t only give off headaches but it is sometimes accompanied by vomiting and nausea. In some cases, you can also become extra sensitive to light and sound, making your headache more painful. People with migraines know how uncomfortable their situation can be and they can only rely on medications to help them get through the attack. About 12% of Americans suffer from migraine while women are more susceptible to it than men. If you have a migraine, you will experience some symptoms first before the headache will start – at least 2 days before it starts such as:
- Food cravings
- Frequent yawning
- Tired all the time
- Stiffness in the neck
In some worst-case scenarios, migraine attacks can even occur on both sides of the head. When left untreated, it can last for 3 days or as long as a week. Fortunately, there are several ways to alleviate migraine pain. With the latest technology we have today, there is a new class of medication that treats migraine attacks. People who get migraines who constantly use medication to alleviate pain may not get the same relief from it anymore. Perhaps it is because your body becomes immune to the existing medication. As a result, you need a higher dose of medication or even a change of medication.
Recently, the FDA approved the use of new medications that include:
- Erenumab (Aimovig)
- Ubrelvy (Ubrogepant)
- Fremanezumab (Ajovy)
- Galcanezumab (Emgality)
They are classified as monoclonal antibodies and are used to prevent migraines from occurring; reducing the intensity and frequency. The new class of medication targets and interferes with calcitonin, the gene-related peptide or CGRP. CGRP is a type of protein that causes nerve ending inflammation and is directly associated with migraine. Monoclonal antibodies are also called CGRP antagonists or inhibitors.
This new class of medication will attach to CGRP or its receptors, blocking and neutralizing CGRP for a certain period of time. As a result, no inflammation on the nerves will take place; reducing your risk of experiencing a migraine. Getting injections with these new medicines will protect you from migraine attacks. Think of getting insulin shots to treat your diabetes – it works pretty much the same. However, you need to do it less often. Some of these medicines may be required to be taken at least once a month while others may be taken once every three months.
These drugs are effective but it doesn’t mean that it works for everyone. To make sure you can use this new class of medication, talk to your doctor first before using it and start out on the lowest dose possible.