Today is day #5 of the 2016 Migraine and Headache Awareness Month Social Media Challenge. Today's prompt is:
#Migraine can and does kill through stroke and suicide. #MHAM
It's one of the things about Migraine that nobody wants to talk about. Migraine can kill. No, you'll probably never see it listed as a cause of death, but Migraine can and does kill. This is one reason I truly detest seeing someone say, "This Migraine is killing me." Whenever I see someone Tweet that or say it elsewhere online, I think to myself, "If it were, you wouldn't be at your computer or on your phone or tablet."
One way Migraine can kill is by causing a stroke that proves fatal. Thankfully, this isn't very common, but it does happen. This accentuates how vitally important it is for us to contact our doctors or seek emergency care if we experience new Migraine symptoms that are frightening or especially severe. So many of the symptoms we can experience during a Migraine attack can also be stroke symptoms. My Migraine specialist, Dr. David Watson, was asked how we can tell if some of these symptoms are stroke or Migraine. His reply was that there are times when we truly can't tell by ourselves, and if there's ever a question, we should seek immediate care. Better a false alarm than a stroke that doesn't get timely treatment.
Sorrowfully, the pain, other debilitating symptoms, isolation, fear, and social stigma that go with Migraine disease has led far too many people to lose all hope and take their own lives. It's heart-wrenching when this happens to ANYONE, and it's especially so when it happens to younger people with so much of their lives ahead of them. I've known this to happen with Migraineurs as young as 14-years-old, and it's beyond tragic.
Some people contend that it's not Migraine, but stroke and suicide that takes these lives. Although they may have a technical point, it's time they wake up and get a clue. That's almost like saying that drunk divers don't kill - it's the injuries from the car wrecks that kill. Anyone with an ounce of compassion doesn't argue the point. They accept that both drunk drivers and Migraine kill.
As we strive to raise awareness and improve the lives of everyone with Migraine and other Headache disorders, one of the most valuable tools we have is knowledge. To us it properly, we have to admit even the painful facts to ourselves and share them with others. We have to bring facts out into the light rather than leaving them in the shadows to fester and cause harm.
Please Join Us In This Year's
Migraine and Headache Awareness Month Activities!
because a migraine is NOT "just a headache"