Migraines cause mood swings

Hi All,

One thing about all of this migraine junk that drives me crazy are my constant and never-ending mood swings. One day I can feel depressed out of the blue and then, just like that, it’s gone. Anxiety can come and vanish as well as we all know. So why does this happen? Why do some doctors tell us that “we’re just anxious” and to get over it. This article from the New York Times answers it:

[size=130]Can Migraines Cause Mood Swings?[/size]
Can feelings of depression or elation accompany migraine headaches? What causes the strange visual effects and body sensations of a migraine aura? Dr. David Dodick of the Mayo Clinic responds to readers of the Consults blog.

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Q: I had migraine diagnosed when I was 24 years old (I’m now 30), but I remember having them since my teens. I usually get them during times when my hormone levels change (e.g., during periods, ovulation). There are also other triggers like stress, too little sleep, etc.

If the migraines start during the day, they are often preceded and/or followed by major mood swings, the kind that make me want to go jump off the bridge. The associated depression often recedes with pain and then comes back again after the pain recedes. Afterward, I can feel on top of the world — loving, caring and full of joy. Is this normal?

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ANSWER: What you are experiencing before and after the headache of a migraine attack is not unusual. I am glad you asked, because it speaks to why I emphasise that migraine is more than just a bad headache.

Migraine is too often “bookmarked” by the start and stop of the headache, but migraine is frequently associated with symptoms other than headache before, during and after the onset of head pain. About 75% of migraine sufferers will experience non-headache premonitory symptoms prior to the headache pain. Patients experience a range of cognitive, emotional and physical symptoms in this phase; the most common include feeling tired and weary, difficulty concentrating, stiff neck, dizziness, light and noise sensitivity, yawning, and depression or irritability.

These non-headache symptoms usually occur within six hours before and resolve within six hours after the headache. But in a sizable minority of people, the symptoms can start within 24 hours of the pain and take more than 24 hours to resolve.

This range is important to recognize for a few reasons. First, it reflects the fact that the changes associated with a migraine attack are occurring in the brain up to three days before and one day after the headache pain begins, and therefore, the disability associated with attacks cannot be measured by the duration of the pain alone. Second, while appropriate studies need to be done, preliminary studies indicate that the non-headache symptoms that occur prior to the headache pain may give some patients a “window of opportunity” to treat early and prevent or significantly lessen the ensuing headache.

It is important to note, though, that early treatment during this premonitory phase requires that the patient can accurately recognize the symptoms that reliably indicate and predict that a migraine headache is imminent, especially since the symptoms are vague and may not necessarily be associated with migraine. Early treatment during this phase also should only be entertained by those patients whose attacks are relatively infrequent and difficult to treat once the pain has begun.

consults.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/ … od-swings/

Scott 8)

thanks scott - very interesting.

So true!

Scott my migraine feels like a burst depression that lasts only a short time,
the anxiety can feel much like pannic attack yet it isnt,
I call it, a feeling of TERROR

Just prior to a migraine/vertigo… I feel a burst of energy and talk a lot giggle ect:
My family knows these signs and say youre gonna have a migraine.
Basically , when I have a migraine it’s like I’m DRUNK! :frowning:

And as far as Dr telling us it’s anxiety?
it’s only Dr’s who dont “treat” or understand what Mav is.


I get it too - pleasant variants of a burst of unexplained emotional doom/gloom or an overwhelming and physical sense of existential terror. The “anxiety” on the other hand feels purely physical - an annoying buzzing in the chest. Ain’t migraine grand?


I very often get depression with a bad migraine and it lifts as the migraine goes.

Anxiety, I always get the heart palps night time with or without a migraine. Just as I am dropping off to sleep, jittery inside, a funny feeling in top abdomen of anxiety and my heart racing, this can go on all through the night and I dont sleep. Lately I have gone right round the clock with no sleep through this. Sometimes its a stressful event that triggers it, sometimes not.