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migraine symptoms and signs


Migraine symptoms aren’t just in your head.

When a migraine is on its way, some people say they can feel it coming. It’s like their bodies have a built-in warning system.1 Getting to know these signs of a migraine can help you take action at the best time.1

Migraine warning signs

The signs of a migraine can be subtle. You might feel tired, or become very sensitive to noise or light.2

Migraine aura

As the pain gets closer, your body may also send visual migraine warning signs. You might see flashing lights or sparks, bright zigzagging lines, or a blind spot. Experts call this special type of headache "migraine with aura." 2, 3

About one in five people who get migraines experience migraine auras, and they’re less common in women than in men.3


Migraine symptoms

Once a full-blown migraine strikes, you may feel moderate — or even unbearable — pain. While everybody experiences migraine headaches differently, common migraine symptoms include:

  • Pulsating or throbbing pain on one side of the head
  • Nausea
  • Sensitivity to light or sound1

Make sure to consult your doctor about headache diagnosis and treatment.


  1. National Headache Foundation. Migraine. Migraine Topic Sheet. ¶4 Available at: Last accessed July 2011.
  2. American Migraine Foundation. About Migraine: What Is Migraine? Available at: Last accessed July 2011.
  3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Migraine Fact Sheet. Are there different kinds of migraine? Available at: Last accessed August 2011.


Tags: migraine causesheadache symptoms, migraine symptoms, aura migraines

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