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Migraines With Aura vs. Migraines without

  1. Dr Keefe, Keefe Clinic, Natural Health Care, Tulsa Chiropractor, Diet, Pain,

When you have a long-term migraine, it's about much more than a headache. You may feel sick to your stomach and find it hard to handle light, sounds, and smells. For some folks, though, it doesn't stop there. They also get something called an aura.

Most often, an aura causes you to see strange things, like colored spots or flashing lights. It can be pretty scary, especially the first time it happens.

Migraines without auras are much more common than any other kind. You can get them as often as several times a week or as little as once a year.

Auras show up in about 1 in 3 people with a migraine, but you're not likely to get them every time. So it's possible you might have both types of migraine, with auras happening here and there.

How Are They Different?

In both, you get the typical migraine symptoms, which may last anywhere from a few hours to a few days. That can include:

  • Being sensitive to light, smells, sound, and touch
  • Blurred vision
  • Pain that's usually on one side of the head and worse when you move
  • Stomach upset and throwing up
  • Stiffness in your shoulders and neck

The difference is whether or not you get an aura. When you do, it typically sets in slowly over 5 to 20 minutes. It may last up to an hour. It often acts as a warning sign, coming on before any pain shows up. But it can happen during a migraine as well.

Visual auras. These are the most common ones. You might see bizarre shapes or effects that grow or move, such as:

  • Blind spots
  • Colored spots
  • Flashes of light
  • Sparkles and stars
  • Tunnel vision
  • Zigzags

Other auras. Less often, they can affect your other senses and even your ability to move. You might have:

  • Confusion and a hard time understanding people
  • Movements you can't control, like sudden jerks
  • Muscle weakness
  • Music or noises in your head that aren't really there
  • Pins and needles that start in your fingers or arm and spread to your face
  • Speech problems, as if you know what you want to say but can't form the words

But these may also be symptoms of a stroke. If you have any of them, and your doctor has not already told you that they are a part of your migraine, call 911.

Sometimes you can get an aura without any other symptoms. That's called a silent migraine. It's more common in people 50 and older.


Dr. Keefe, Keefe Clinic. Tulsa Chiropractor, pain, natural health care.

Chiropractic adjustments alone can correct most types of headaches. Migraines present certain challenges because there can be many factors. A number of factors may trigger migraines, including Hormonal changes in women. Hormonal medications, Foods, Food additives, Drinks, Stress, Sensory stimuli, Changes in the wake-sleep pattern, Physical factors, Changes in the environment, and Medications.

So knowing what factors trigger migraines can help in the solution. Besides chiropractic adjustments, you should work in getting the amount of fluid you need to help your body detox. Most adults need between 7 or 8 hours of sleep each night. Exercise can help reduce the effects of stress.


Butterbur Extra is a supplement we would recommend. It contains key nutrients and herbs that can help correct the nutritional causes of migraines. 2 to 3 per day as part of an overall program would be an excellent way to control your migraines naturally. All pharmaceutical pain pills are dangerous, even ibuprofen and Tylenol.

To your better health,

Dr. Keefe

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