Saturday, April 13, 2024

Can Migraines Cause Blurry Vision

What Causes Ocular And Visual Migraines

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Currently, there is limited research on what causes ocular and visual migraines.

Although studies have shown a change in blood flow into the eye during ocular migraines, the exact cause of this change remains unclear.

However, scientists sometimes associate the condition with genetics, meaning it may run in the family.

According to research, up to 70% of migraine patients have a personal or family history of migraine.2

Migraine triggers play a vital role in the onset and frequency of migraines.

Common migraine triggers include:3

  • Alcoholic drinks such as red wine
  • Excess heat or high altitude

Did You Know That Headaches And Blurred Vision Could Indicate You Have A Undiagnosed Eye Condition

When blurred vision and a headache are experienced at the same time it can be frightening, especially the first time it happens.

Blurred vision can affect one or both eyes. It can cause vision to be cloudy, dim, or even peppered with shapes and colors, making it difficult to see.

If a headache occurs with or causes blurred vision, it may be due to an underlying condition or medical emergency.

Contact an eye doctor near you if you experience blurred vision and a headache at the same time, as it can be a sign of a serious condition.

Treatment For Migraines And Related Symptoms

Many people can lessen or get rid of their headache and its problems by changing their daily habits:

  • Avoid trigger foods, including chocolate, peanuts, and red wine.

Your doctor may prescribe drugs called triptans, including rizatriptan and sumatriptan to stop migraines before they become full-blown.

A new class called ditans which includes lasmiditan may be a safer option if you are older or have certain heart problems. Gepants such as rimegepant and ubrogepant block CGRP to help stop migraines in their tracks.

You’ll need a prescription for any of these gadgets, too.

Both prescribed and over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs, such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and naproxen, may give you relief from the migraine’s effects.

Biofeedback and acupuncture can help you manage your stress as well as headache pain and other sensations.

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What Are Psychogenic Blackouts

Psychogenic blackout is a medical term for a blackout that can look like reflex syncope or an epileptic seizure but is not related to either. During a psychogenic blackout, people lose some control of their body. Attacks might involve: Passing out and falling to the floor. Jerking movements of your arms or legs.

What Are The Symptoms Of An Ocular Migraine

What Causes Blurred Vision in One Eye &  How is it Treated

The most common ocular migraine symptom is a small blind spot that impairs your central vision in one eye.

This blind spot expands, making it difficult to drive safely or read using the affected eye.

In addition to the flickering blind spot, other migraine symptoms include:

  • A colorful light ring that is wavy or zigzag and surrounds a central blind spot
  • A blind spot that slowly migrates across your field of vision
  • A migraine lasting between 4 and 42 hours
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • A headache that feels worse when you move your head

If you have blind spots or other visual symptoms and arent sure whether it’s an ocular migraine or a visual migraine, cover one eye at a time and observe your sense of sight. If the visual disturbance affects one eye only, it is most likely an ocular migraine.

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Eye Conditions That Trigger Blurry Vision And Migraines

Homeeye careEye Conditions That Trigger Blurry Vision and Migraines

An American Migraine Study conducted in 1999 says that in the U.S., 38 million people are living with migraines, out of which 44% people suffer from migraines due to vision changes and blurred vision.

Its normal for our vision to deteriorate as we age. However, not many people realize that their eyesight may have gone from bad to worse with age.

When we have trouble seeing, we may either squint or hold things too far or too close to them. While doing so, we may weaken our eye muscles and nerves without the slightest inkling that we may be having a bad eyesight.

The result can be blurry vision and migraine. Read on to understand what cause migraines that are vision related.

Diagnosing And Treating Ocular Migraines

When you visit your doctor, they will ask about your symptoms, examine your eyes, and order additional tests to rule out other serious conditions such as:

  • Amaurosis fugax
  • Giant cell arteritis
  • Spasms in the blood vessels that carry blood to the eye
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Stroke or transient ischemic attack

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What Are The Acute Treatments For Migraine

An isolated visual migraine, without headache, typically does not require any acute treatment, since the visual symptoms resolve on their own fairly quickly. The first few times someone experiences a visual migraine it usually causes a lot of anxiety. Once someone has become familiar with the symptoms of a visual migraine, new episodes no longer cause the same level of anxiety.

It can be helpful to try to rest during the episode. Some patients benefit from other strategies, including eating something, having caffeine, or taking an over-the-counter medication such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen .

Patients in whom the visual symptoms are accompanied by a severe headache often benefit from additional therapies. The goal of these medications is to try to cut short the headache before it becomes too severe. Some patients find naproxen , which is a stronger anti-inflammatory medication, to be helpful. Other patients try a class of medications known as triptans.

Triptans are specially designed to work on receptors on blood vessels and brain cells in order to halt a migraine at an early stage. Although there are a number of different triptans, made by several different pharmaceutical companies, each of these is approximately equally effective. Triptans are often taken orally, but also come as injections and nasal sprays. These medicines are generally not considered safe in patients with a history of strokes, heart attacks, or other vascular diseases.

More Serious Eye Conditions

Headaches? Migraine? Blurry Vision? Neck Pain? – Fix it at Home! Step3: Sternocliedomastoid Location

Headache sufferers may also want to get checked for cataracts and glaucoma. While the main symptoms of cataracts are cloudy vision and difficulty seeing at night, some cataract patients experience headaches when their eyes work overboard to overcome these problems. Glaucoma is caused by a buildup of fluid that is unable to drain from the eye. This excess fluid creates pressure behind the eyes, which in turn can cause headaches.

Access Eye treats patients with cataracts and glaucoma, which should improve the condition of their eyesight in addition to alleviating related headaches.

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Ask The Doctor: Blurry Vision And Headache

Q.I experienced a minute of blurred vision during a headache today. Is that cause for concern?

A. While temporary blurred vision usually does not indicate a serious underlying health problem, on occasion it can. In people over age 60, I am more concerned about that symptom, because it can be sign of a transient ischemic attack , also called a ministroke. The fact that your vision problem accompanied a headache could well indicate that you are suffering from a common type of headachemigraine. Migraines don’t threaten permanent damage to your brain, whereas a TIA is a sign that a person is at risk for an impending stroke. Strokes can cause permanent brain damage. If you are younger than 60, if you have had headaches accompanied by visual problems multiple times in the past, or if you have been diagnosed as having migraine headaches, I’d feel even more confident that your symptoms are caused by this condition.

Anthony L. Komaroff, M.D.

What Causes Migraine Pain

Research is still ongoing, but migraines are thought to likely be caused by a phenomenon called cortical spreading depression . This is a process that happens in the brain, more specifically the cortex, when these brain cells are over stimulated.

This stimulation affects the production of serotonin and other brain chemicals. Serotonin then stimulates the trigeminovascular system. This system controls the brains blood vessels, causing them to swell.

Swollen blood vessels do two things:

  • Push on neighbouring nerves causing the sensation of pain.
  • Force the blood to travel through much smaller than normal spaces, making the pulsation of the blood more prominent.

With changes like this happening to the vessels inside our heads, it isnt all that surprising that people often describe the pain as throbbing or as a feeling of pressure inside their head.

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What To Do Next

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At Restoration Spinal Care we utilize the NUCCA technique. This is a system of precision, low force chiropractic adjustments designed to correct the misaligned spine by gently moving the head and neck alignment first which influences the rest of the spine.

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Blurred Vision You Could Be Having Ocular Migraines

Myopia in 2021

Although migraines are typically thought to manifest in the form of headaches, ocular migraines also exist. Also known as retinal migraines, ocular migraines take the form of temporary visual disturbances, and can blur the vision in either one or both eyes depending on the severity. Fortunately, ocular migraines are usually harmless, and will resolve themselves without treatment in about 20 to 30 minutes. However, if you experience ocular migraines frequently, there may be an underlying cause which requires treatment.

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It’s Easy To Get The Care You Need

See a Premier Physician Network provider near you.

The visual cues are hard to ignore: shimmering or flashing lights, zigzagging lines or stars, black spots. All make it difficult to read, write, or drive. If you experience these symptoms, youre most likely having an ocular migraine. It can occur with or without the pain of a migraine headache.

For people prone to migraines, one of every five has this visual aura before the headache pain begins. An ocular migraine by itself lasts anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour and isnt considered a serious condition.

Headache specialist Richard Kim, MD, describes a migraine with aura.

Click play to watch the video or read video transcript.

What is a migraine with aura?

Although some doctors think ocular migraines are caused by the same factors that create classic migraines, no one knows for certain. Ocular migraines seem to run in families. They have been linked to estrogen, a female hormone that fluctuates during menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause, or with use of oral contraceptives or hormone replacement therapies.

Most ocular and retinal migraines dont require treatment.

Symptoms Of Retinal Migraine

The symptoms of retinal migraine may include:

  • partial or total loss of vision in 1 eye this usually lasts 10 to 20 minutes before vision gradually returns
  • headache this may happen before, during or after the vision attack

It’s unusual for an episode of vision loss to last longer than an hour. The same eye is affected every time in almost all cases.

Vision may slowly become blurred or dimmed, or there may be flashes of light. Some people see a mosaic-like pattern of blank spots , which enlarge to cause total loss of vision.

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What Causes Dizziness And Blurred Vision

By Anna Barden

Dizziness and blurred vision can be triggered by various conditions, a reaction to medication and even stress. Whether symptoms are mild or severe, it is important to pinpoint what may have caused dizziness or blurry vision to occur.

Depending on the underlying cause, occurrences of blurred vision and dizziness are often accompanied by nausea, headache and light-headedness, among other symptoms. If blurred vision and dizziness are prolonged or other serious symptoms develop, contact a doctor.

Important Points To Describe Your Headache To Your Doctor:

Migraine aura, light flashes, blurry vision, headache – A State of Sight #39
  • Location of the headache may help your doctor determine the cause of the headache or where to perform additional testing
  • For example, pain located near the nose may indicate a sinus headache
  • Severity of the headache may be one of the most important factors.
  • While many people get mild headaches occasionally, any severe headache should prompt immediate attention.
  • Identifying triggers that bring on a headache may allow you to better manage your headaches.
  • For example, oftentimes patients with migraines report triggers including loud noises, bright lights, or caffeine use.
  • Associated symptoms that happen before, during or after your headache are also very important to discuss with your doctor.
  • Concerning symptoms that should prompt immediate attention: tingling, numbness, weakness, loss of vision, vertigo, dizziness, nausea, double vision
  • Other important symptoms to note: lights in your vision, blurred vision, sensitivity to light, throbbing
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    Can Migraines Cause Blurred Vision

    “I can see clearly now the rain is gone,” sang Johnny Nash back in the day, and many migraine patients will no doubt agree with him. That’s especially true for sufferers who experience visual disturbances during an attack. While a classic migraine accompanied by lights and patterns is usually a regular migraine with aura, many patients also develop other visual symptoms before, during or after an attack. These headaches are known as retinal, ophthalmic or ocular migraines, depending on the specific type and location of the symptoms.

    What Are The Symptoms Of A Migraine

    Migraines affect people in different ways but the most commonly described symptoms are

    • Throbbing pain or pulsing sensation on one side of the head
    • Severe pain typically lasting 4 72 hours
    • Aura occuring for 10 30 minutes, up to one hour before the migraine pain starts
    • Extreme sensitivity to light, noise and sometimes to smell and/or touch
    • Vomiting and/or nausea

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    Tips For Managing And Preventing Visual Migraines

    If your visual migraine occurs frequently, here are some tips to help you prevent or manage the condition.

    • Acupressure. This is an evidence-based practice of applying pressure with hands to specific points on the body to relieve pain and other symptoms. It can be an effective alternative therapy for migraine headaches.
    • Lavender oil. Lavender oil can be inhaled or applied diluted to the temples to ease your migraine pain.
    • Peppermint oil. According to a 2010 study, the menthol in peppermint oil can minimize migraines.6 The research showed that applying menthol to the forehead and temples relieved migraine-related pain, nausea, and light sensitivity.
    • Yoga. Yoga uses breathing, meditation, and body postures to promote health and well-being, relieving the frequency, duration, and intensity of migraines.
    • Massage therapy. Massage reduces stress and enhances coping skills. It also lowers heart rate, anxiety, and cortisol levels.
    • Herbal supplements. Butterbur and feverfew are common herbal remedies that may aid with migraine pain and frequency reduction.
    • Avoid Triggers. Ocular migraine triggers such as caffeinated foods, alcohol, dehydration, smoking, or stress
    • Unwind at the end of the day. Basic things like listening to soothing music or taking a warm bath after a long day can help your body relax and prevent migraines.

    When Should You Be Concerned With A Headache

    Six Reasons for Ocular and Visual Migraines (Plus Treatment)
    • Any severe headache should be seen by a doctor immediately go to the Emergency room if necessary.

    • Any headache associated with tingling, numbness, loss of vision, vertigo, nausea, dizziness, double vision should prompt immediate attention including the emergency room if necessary.
    • Repeated headaches of any kind, should be discussed with your doctor.

    If you are concerned with ANY headache of any kind please seek help whether that be from your primary care doctor, eye doctor, or emergency room if necessary. Ultimately, getting an evaluation by a doctor is safer than assuming a headache is benign.

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    How Are Blurred Vision And Headache Treated

    Treatment will depend on the cause of your blurred vision and headache. Each condition will involve different medications and treatment regimens.

    In cases involving emergency conditions, your first responsibility is to get medical attention as quickly as possible. Your medical team will then be able to advise you of treatment options.

    Your doctor will choose tests to diagnose conditions quickly that require emergency care or urgent care so that treatment can be started. They will then decide on further evaluations and treatments.

    What Are The ‘red Flags’ That My Visual Symptoms Are Not Due To Migraine

    The typical symptoms of a visual migraine are positive, meaning that there is something shimmering or sparkling that is disrupting the vision. Migraines are less likely to cause “negative” symptoms of pure visual darkness. An episode of visual darkness typically requires additional evaluation for other conditions, including a mini-stroke .

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