In today’s fast-paced world, migraines and headaches are commonplace, especially in high-pressure environments such as school and work. Not all migraines are alike. It helps to familiarize yourself with the different types of migraines so you know which one you’re dealing with. Vision Care Associates, certified opticians weigh in on the topic of ocular migraine.
Below are its symptoms, causes, and treatment options.
What Is Ocular Migraine?
Ocular migraines, also known as ophthalmic, retinal, or eye migraines, is a type of migraine that involves visual disturbances. Ocular migraines can affect one or both eyes and can also be accompanied by a classic migraine. While they can be alarming for some, ocular migraines are harmless. The visual disturbances typically go away after 30 minutes without the aid of medication.
What Are the Symptoms of an Ocular Migraine?
Visual disturbances brought about by ocular migraines manifest in various forms. In some cases, you’ll see a small blind spot that slowly grows in size in your central vision. This blind spot is called a scotoma. Another symptom takes on the form of scintillations or bright, flickering lights accompanied by wavy lines around the blind spot. The ordeal may last anywhere from a few minutes to half an hour.
Some patients report that they experience mood swings, food cravings and fatigue days or weeks before a migraine attack. Most cases of ocular migraines don’t require emergency eye care services.
What Causes Ocular Migraines?
The main cause of ocular migraines remains largely unknown. According to the World Health Organization, it’s almost certain that migraines are genetic. The instances of ocular migraines are triggered by a bodily mechanism that changes blood flow to the brain, although the underlying reason has yet to be discovered.
Treatment and Prevention
For some patients, certain foods trigger the onset of an ocular migraine. Food additives, aged cheese, caffeinated drinks, red wine, smoked meats and chocolate are some of the most common trigger foods. Cigarette smoke, overpowering perfume scents and odors, bright lights and stress can also trigger ocular migraines. Staying away from or avoiding the consumption of these items can help the patient avoid migraine attacks.
Taking time to relax and care for your well-being can help lessen ocular migraine instances. Be patient and wait for each ordeal to pass. Schedule regular comprehensive eye exams as well.
Vision Care Associates offers optical services designed to address your unique eye care needs. We provide expert treatment for various eye conditions. Call us today at (304) 315-6055 to schedule your appointment. We work with patients in Parkersburg, WV.