Migraines and Eye Pain | Why Migraines Have This Unique Symptom And What You Can Do About It

There are several things that can cause eye pain, but headaches and migraines are two of the more common causes. There are different ways the eyes can be affected with headaches and migraines. Sometimes it’s just eye pain, sometimes it’s blurry vision, sometimes it’s seeing flashing lights (aura), sometimes it’s temporary blindness, and sometimes it’s a combination of some of them. 

Eye Pain 

The medical research community isn’t exactly sure why some types of headaches and migraines cause eye pain or affect vision, but a couple of the leading theories are:

  • Blood vessel spasms in the retina
  • Changes in nerve cell function in the retina

There are two types of headaches that affect the eyes that everyone needs to be aware of and seek medical attention if they experience them – temporal headaches and ocular migraines. They can both lead to blindness and every effort to manage them should be taken. 

Temporal headaches (also called temporal arteritis) don’t typically cause pain in the eye, but rather around the temples. Pain around the temples is a rather common spot for pain with headaches, but something unique about temporal headaches is that your temples get sore to the touch – not something other headaches cause. It’s a blockage of the blood vessels that’s causing the pain and medical attention is needed because of the blockage gets big enough it can cause permanent vision loss or a stroke. 

Ocular Migraines 

An ocular migraine can cause temporary vision loss which makes it unsafe to drive or operate machinery when having an episode.  Although not as dangerous as a temporal headache, an ocular migraine warrants medical attention because losing your vision all of a sudden can be very inconvenient at the least, and dangerous in some cases. Given that most headaches are related to problems in the neck and all migraines are related to a problem in the central nervous system the type of specialists recommended are upper cervical chiropractor and medical neurologist. 

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