Pediatric migraine specialist in Hyderabad | Dr. Habib Pathan
Many of us think that migraines occur only in adults, but it is not apt. There have been reported cases of migraines in children as young as 18 months old. In fact, almost 50 percent of migraine sufferers have their first migraine before the age of 12. Nearly about 10% school-age children and 28% of teenagers (age between 15 to 19 years) suffer from migraine.
Migraine frequency and episodes vary in boys and girls
During early childhood and before puberty, migraines are more frequent in young boys than girls. Which means, before puberty, boys suffer from migraine more often than girls. Migraine attacks increase rapidly in girls compared to boys as they approach adolescence. By the time girls turn 17, nearly about 24% of girls have experienced migraines, whereas the percentage of boys who have experienced migraine by the time they turn 17 is about 17%.
Migraine in children is not just a bad headache
Migraine is not just a typical headache. It is a neurological condition associated with throbbing and pulsating pain, dizziness, vomiting, nausea, sensitivity to sound, light, touch and odours. The other atypical symptoms of migraine include stomach upset and changes in mood.
Though migraine episodes are less frequent in children when compared to adults, childhood migraines are disabling as they profoundly affect the quality of a child’s life.
Chronic Migraine (CM) in Kids
Migraine in kids is referred to as chronic if they have migraine for almost 15 days in a month lasting for up to four hours or more. When 15 or more episodes of migraine last for more than three months, then this type of migraine is known as chronic migraine. CM can occur in adolescents, teens and children. Kids who suffer from chronic migraine report daily headaches.
Children who suffer from chronic migraine also have mood changes, dizziness, sleep disturbances, concentration issues, anxiety and depression. CM can profoundly affect a child’s quality of life.
The exact cause of childhood migraine is still unknown. It is likely that a combination of genetic and environmental factors could play a role in the occurrence of migraine episodes. Furthermore, the chance of getting a migraine in a child is up to 50% if one parent has migraine – and, it can go up to 75% if both the parents have a migraine. The majority of migraine sufferers have a close relative with the disease.
Parents don’t have a proper understanding of their child’s migraine. Chronic headaches and migraines are often misdiagnosed in kids and there are only a few drugs to treat them. Furthermore, there are very few specialist doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of childhood migraine. If you think that your child could be suffering from migraine, seek an appointment with a pediatric migraine specialist and neurologist.
Dr. Habib Pathan
Pediatric Migraine Specialist in Hyderabad