Living with Migraines: Triggers, Symptoms, and Treatments

Migraines are caused by inflammation of blood vessels in the brain, called vasodilation. The nerve fibers that wrap around the blood vessels are stretched which cause them to release chemicals that then trigger further inflammation and increased pain. The more inflammation there is, the larger the blood vessels expand, releasing more chemicals, and the more pain is experienced.

Twenty-eight million Americans suffer from migraines. The pain of migraine headaches can be debilitating. It can be moderate to severe, last four to 72 hours, and include various other symptoms such as pounding or throbbing in one or both sides of the head, a sensitivity to light, sounds, and smells, upset stomach or nausea with or without vomiting, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, and feelings of being too warm or too cold.

Symptoms of Migraine Headaches

Each person’s and each migraine’s symptoms can differ. There are five stages of a migraine:

  • Prodrome – This is the warning phase, which can occur a few hours to a few days before the actual headache. It may be characterized by mood changes such as irritability, depression, or elation. Fatigue, sleepiness, or muscle tension are also symptoms.
  • Aura – Although not common (experienced by less than 20% of sufferers) an aura usually starts about 30 minutes before the onset of the migraine. The symptoms include dancing or zigzagging lights that start in the middle of the field of vision and extend outward or blind spots (scotomas).
  • Headache – The pain can begin as an ache that progresses to a throbbing or pounding pain in one or both sides of the head. Sensitivity to light, sound, and smells occur in 70% of sufferers. Nausea is experienced by about 80%. This is the longest phase and can last from four hours to three days or longer.
  • Headache Termination – Sometimes either prescription or over-the-counter medications are needed to help alleviate pain and symptoms. In the absence of treatment, migraines will usually go away with sleep.
  • Postdrome – Some symptoms such as fatigue, loss of appetite, or a dull headache can remain for approximately 24 hours after a migraine. Many sufferers are more likely to have another migraine during this phase.

Relief for Migraine Symptoms

There are many things a migraine sufferer can do to either lessen or alleviate pain and symptoms. If sensitivity to light and sound are an issue, resting in a quiet dark room can help. An ice pack or cold compress and pressure on the areas causing pain are also effective (for more natural remedies:

Many over-the-counter medications are useful for controlling pain, including acetaminophen, ibuprofen, or ASPIRIN® (also known as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs) but these can cause re-bound headaches when the medication wears off. Anti-nausea drugs are sometimes needed if the nausea is severe. A doctor can also prescribe medications that are taken at the first signs of a migraine to stop pain or preventative medications that can limit the severity and frequency of headaches.

Migraine Triggers

In people who are susceptible to migraines, certain factors, or triggers, can bring about a headache. Avoiding these triggers as much as possible is one way to help prevent a migraine. Triggers include:

  • stress
  • sleep disorders such as sleep deprivation or too much sleep
  • lowered blood sugar due to fasting
  • decrease in estrogen in women
  • high intensity visual stimulation or flashing lights
  • certain odors
  • cigarette smoke (including second-hand smoke)
  • alcohol consumption
  • aged cheeses (cheddar, blue, Swiss, etc.)
  • chocolate
  • monosodium glutamate (high doses on an empty stomach)
  • nitrate and nitrites (preservatives found in hot dogs, ham, bacon, etc.)
  • aspartame (artificial sweetener found in diet soft drinks)
  • caffeine (can cause insomnia, irritability, anxiety, and headaches)

Although there is no known cure for migraines, there are certain actions sufferers can take to lessen their frequency and severity. Avoiding known triggers, taking over-the-counter and prescription medications to alleviate symptoms, and an individualized treatment program created by a doctor can improve the quality of life for many of those who suffer from this debilitating condition.

Unbelievable! Joan Rivers Plastic Surgery Procedures Reached Over 700

Joan Rivers was a well-known comedian, actress, writer, TV host, and producer. She rose to popularity after guesting on the show The Tonight Show, which Johnny Carson hosted. She later became Carson’s co-host, and then had her own talk show, making her the first woman to host a late-night show. Aside from her epic one liner jokes, she was also known for her love of plastic surgery. The total number of Joan Rivers’ plastic surgery procedures was over 700.

Joan Rivers had always been vocal about how she loved getting plastic surgery, making her look different throughout the years. This was the TV host prior to her many surgeries.

As you can see in this side-by-side comparison of her old and newer photos, she was almost unrecognizable compared to when she first started in the entertainment industry.

Here’s another picture comparison that will show you the evolution of the changing face of Joan Rivers due to her plastic surgery.

One of the hundreds of procedures she had to keep her beauty was rhinoplasty. The bridge of her nose clearly looked thinner on the right image.

Notice how tight the skin on her face is even with her age? Rivers went under the knife for a facelift.

Wrinkles were not a problem too as the original Fashion Police host resolved this concern and eliminated this common sign of aging through Botox.

Another procedure included in the over 700 that she had was an eyelift. Look how pulled up her eyelids are and how prominent they still looked.

Her lips were also noticeably bigger in comparison to her thinner lips when she was younger. Joan never denied her surgeries.

The Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? star didn’t have any problems showing off her neck as it was tight and smooth; thanks to her neck lift.

The late TV host who died in 2014 while undergoing throat surgery also had breast implants, which gave her bigger boobs.

Is Rachael Ray Pregnant? The Truth Behind the Photos

We have known Rachael Ray being a host in several shows in Food Network especially the 30 Minutes Meal, $40 a Day and Rachael Ray’s Tasty Travels. Rachael made us hungry with her shows thanks to the delicious meals and food she features. Her lifestyle talk show, which is named after her, gives us insights into many things in life. It is so much fun watching her on screen. Of course, reading her books is a good investment that you should try. However, we noticed that she gained weight and we only think of Rachael Ray pregnant with her husband John Cusimano. Is she really pregnant despite her age?

As a celebrity cook, we enjoy seeing Rachael add some humor and life insights as she cooks. There is no dead time when she is on air.

Rachael’s cooking style is quick and easy, but restaurant quality. Since she has been part of our daily lives, we will notice if she is pregnant or not.

Rachael makes it look easy to cook meals on a budget and always does this with a huge smile. She really loves what she does.

Is Rachael pregnant in this photo? Some of you will notice the additional weight and the baby bump, but these are hard to tell with this image.

We have been watching Rachael‘s show for years now and we can’t help but notice changes to her body, and her weight gain can be attributed to pregnancy. Is this the case for her?

Rachael and John were married in 2005 and they live a semi-public life and we all know that the couple doesn’t have any child yet. Will that change now?

Some of us will definitely think she is pregnant, but at the age of 44 this might not be the case after all.

Rachael gained weight not because of being pregnant, but because of she is in the menopausal

She refuted the claim of pregnancy, but this does not stop us from liking her especially her quick and easy cooking.

She may not be pregnant or capable of pregnancy, but we all know how happy Rachael is with her life and that’s all that matters to us.

Interesting Facts about Pandas – More than just cuddly-looking creatures

Giant pandas are known to many because of their enormous built. They are also commended for their cute-looking features. Basically, these mammals are not capable of hibernating. They seldom do this. These pandas are usually situated in the mountain ranges of China. They inhibit Shaanxi, Gansu and as well as Sichuan. They can also stay in most lowland areas out there. There are just places that do now allow pandas. These are the ones that conduct forest clearing, farming and other developmental areas.

Their habitat and more

These giant pandas are always in coniferous and broadleaf forests. They prefer ones with bamboo though. They like them elevated between almost 5,000 to 10,000 feet. Apart from this, torrential rains also play an important role in their lives. The same is also true with dense mist. They would like heavy clouds though.

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Giant pandas are popular for their recognizable color. As for their body, they are found from that of typical bears. The fur on their eye patches, ears, shoulders, muzzle and legs are colored in black. As for the rest of the coat of the animal, it is in white. Most scientists are not yet sure as to why these bears are always in black and white. However, there is a speculation to explain this. It is claimed that the bold coloring it goes with gives off effective camouflage to their rocky and snowy surroundings. The thick wooly coat of the panda on the other hand is meant to keep it warm. This is just useful whenever they are in their habitat. These giant pandas are also known for their very large moral teeth. The same is also true with their strong jaw muscles which are intended to crush whatever material there is like bamboos. These animals are highly commended for their cuteness. They are said to be chunky too. However, the reality is that these giant pandas can be really dangerous. It is as compared to other kinds of bears known to many.

These pandas are known for munching bamboos. Almost 99% of their diet comprise this actually. If there is balance though, this is made up of occasional small rodents and as well as grasses. This is also the case with musk deer fawns. As for most zoos, they usually eat bamboo. They also consume rice gruel and sugar cane. There is also this special high-fiber biscuit that they are very much fond of. The same fondness is also expressed in sweet potatoes, carrots and apples.

By nature, these pandas are solitary. They are not so into communication though. They do not do this periodically. These can connect through meetings, calls and even scent marks. Most of the time, off springs would stay delightfully with their mother. They would stay under their care for almost half to even three years. They would definitely live in the forests of bamboo. This is the case for almost so many years now. With this in mind, these pandas would always be unique.

Interesting Facts about Pluto – What you need to know

Pluto is one of the nearest planets to the sun. This is an attribute of the said planet, despite of being a dwarf. This is how it has been called for quite some time now. This started in the year 1930 during its year of discovery. In 2006, studies were still conducted for it. From there, it was dubbed as the 9th planet in the whole solar system. Well, this is one of the common interesting facts about Pluto. As said, it is known as a dwarf planet. It places second, with Eris being the first. The latter is considered the massive dwarf planet.

Just recently, on July 14, 2015 to be exact, it was the New Horizons mission which did a flyby to Pluto. This was undertaken so that high resolution photographs may be captured. This was also a way to find data about Pluto and other worlds there are.

Other information about Pluto

The ninth planet in the solar system comes with five moons. These are well known. Of course, they have their own distance from Pluto. In order, these are Charon, the most enormous in the moons which is locked with the given planet, followed by Styx, Nix, Kerberos and the farthest is Hydra.

As said, Charon is really large. As a matter of fact, there are instances when Pluto is perceived as two objects, or a double dwarf because of the Charon.

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Discovering Pluto

On February 18, 1930, Pluto was discovered. This was initiated by Clyde Tombaugh who was from Lowell Observatory. It took 76 years prior to its discovery, and then its reclassification. It was called dwarf planet right away. This was the time when every noticed that the planet took one third of orbit just around the sun itself.

The year 2006 was important for Pluto because of the given reclassification. This took place right after formalization of its definition by the IAU. With that, it was given its name based on the underworld Roman god. Pluto was the alternative name for Hades. This said name was given as a proposal by then an eleven year-old pupil who came from Oxford, England. She was Venetia Burney.

The orbit of Pluto around the sun takes 246.04 years on Earth. Being the dwarf that it is, Pluto is even way smaller compared to other moons out there. During its first discovery, the size of Pluto surprised and shocked the entire scientific community. This transpired because the realization from their belief that the planet would be comparable to that of Jupiter in terms of size. Well, it turned out to be really small that it is even larger than the moon of the earth, and other sort of moons such as Callisto, Ganymede, Trion, lo, and as well as Europa.

As for the sunlight of Pluto, it resembles the moonlight on earth. This is the case because of its location from the sun.

These are the facts related to Pluto.

Vincent van Gogh Facts – Knowing his art

A lot of people are fascinated with the works of Vincent van Gogh. As a matter of fact, he is one of the most celebrated artists of all time. For those who belong to the minority of individuals who still have a tenfold of information to discover about Vincent, these are Vincent van Gogh facts that may help you appreciate him more. What are these?

Who is Vincent Van Gogh?

Vincent van Gogh was born on March 30, 1853 at Groot-Zundert, Holland. His parents were Reverend Theodorus van Gogh Anna Cornelia Carbentus. The name Van Gogh was obtained and made after his grandfather. The same was also true with his brother who passed away right after his birth.

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There are different pronunciations of Van Gogh in Dutch and English. However, in the United States, his name comes with a silent ‘gh.’ This is the common pronunciation observed these days. But then, this is quite a thing in Holland because the v is uttered like that from the word ‘van.’ These are the variations.

Van Gogh comes with a couple of siblings. He has a brother, whose name was Theodorous. He was lovingly referred to as Theo. He also has another in the name of Cor. Aside from these brothers, he also had sisters, three, who were Willemina, Elisabeth and Anna.

When Van Gogh was still a child, he was considered to be a really serious one. He had always been thoughtful and silent. There was also a time in his life when he agonized from temporal lobe epilepsy. The same was true for mental illness and hallucinations.

Paul Gauguin, who was a famous artist, was really close to Van Gogh. They became really good friends.

When Van Gogh was still young, he really wanted to be a pastor. This was one of his aspirations. As a matter of fact, he intended to be a part of the Dutch Reformed Church. He might had been influenced by his father during those times. Temporarily, he worked as a missionary. However, he then gave in because of all the pressures he was receiving from his parents. The idea was then put off. He did not pursue anymore.

Throughout the lifetime of Van Gogh, he was able to write almost 800 letters. Most of these letters were intended for his brother, Theo, who was also dubbed as one of his close friends.

Painting was one talent Van Gogh will not be forgotten of. When he started, he had to utilize his peasants as one of his models. Afterwards, he chose nature to be the subject of his creation. He painted flowers and as well as landscapes. There were also times when he had himself painted. He had no other option during those times since he did not have any money to pay models.

In the entire life of Van Gogh, he was not able to find any romantic love at all. He only went through failed relationships and that was about it.

Van Gogh was able to produce 2,000 pieces of art, 900 of which was paintings.

Differentiated Instruction Lesson Plans May Work for Aspergers

It has been discussed throughout the decades that not every child learns in the same manner. It is with this idea in mind that a differentiated instruction lesson plan offers a more open way for any student to learn, making the lesson interesting and memorable. Besides sharpening interest and memory, a differentiated instruction lesson plan could offer certain students a doorway into learning at all.

How Do Differentiated Instruction and Aspergers Fit Together?

Aspergers Syndrome is a high-functioning autism. At first encounter, an AS child can seem like a vibrant, but otherwise typical kid. When the child doesn’t stop talking, and follows people who turn away, and goes on and on about one subject that he or she seems fascinated about, the realization may suddenly dawn that this child is a little different.

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Because of the inner-focusing and malfunctioning ability to perceive social cues that an Asperger Syndrome student experiences, interactive differentiated instruction lesson plans may work for Aspergers children by involving them rather than sitting them in the middle of a classroom of distractions. According to, the components of differentiated instruction are: Professional collaborative efforts, hands-on learning, cooperative learning classroom practices, non-linguistic representations for modeling and guided practice, and fostering the ability to make connections to “real life.” lists the characteristics of an AS child as having naive, inappropriate, one-sided social interactions; a limited ability to establish relationships; poor non-verbal communication; intense absorption in certain subjects. These characteristics are not things that can be unlearned or suppressed, and make the concentration on “outside” lessons and rules difficult.

Having a board at the front of the room for everyone to see and be able to follow the teacher collectively could leave an Asperger Syndrome child behind. High-functioning autism is stimulated by visual guidance in an academic environment, and the social skills of an Aspergers student are more likely to improve with more interaction with people. Differentiated instruction lesson plans offer these opportunities.

Social Learning With Aspergers Children

Differentiated instruction lesson plans involve not only academic learning, but as an alternative to traditional lessons, they also involves the teaching through the students as they work together and with the teacher. Asperger kids don’t register facial expression as cues to others’ feelings and moods, and so their non-verbal communication is poor. A happy face may as well be one of confusion or pain because an Asperger person won’t see it as any communication of mood.

Sitting in a classroom where faces are not seen while everyone is looking at the board, practice for seeing facial expression as a communication device is minimal. Cooperative learning classroom practices provide groups of children who can discuss projects and subject matter among themselves. An Asperger child’s inevitable one-sided social approach can be guided by students and teachers who will tell the AS student that it is time to see what someone else has to say. With an explanation to the class of why an AS child’s mannerisms are different from most other kids, patience and guidance can be practiced by all, whether pointing-out social cues or learning to see them.

Visual Stimulus and Interactive Learning With Aspergers

Differentiated instruction lesson plans may work for Aspergers kids at a more potent level, if the teacher isn’t alone in guiding an AS child through the learning process. Other teachers, as well as autism specialists and occupational therapists, can join together with professional collaborative efforts to find the right niche in which an AS child will learn best. The ideas of other teachers, and in some cases the presence of more adults in general, contribute to the success of academic achievement in an Aspergers student.

Many AS kids will communicate better and feed their attention more fully with adults, and they can learn that the academic effort that is needed in school prompts these highly desired interactions with teachers. The use of their hands-on projects or computer programs is more memorable for an Asperger child, since the sensory stimulation that promotes visual learning extends through touch as well. Differentiated instructional lesson plans can provide opportunities for this with clay sculpture, carpentry, and gardening among other projects.

A major characteristic of Asperger children is the intense absorption in any one of a number of subjects from airplanes to computers. Using this obsession as non-linguistic representation for modeling could be a powerful visual aid while learning math, science, and English. This interest in one subject would also be a key connection to lessons about life, which, to an Aspergers child, is not seen as a network of other people and situations entwined with his or her own, but rather as a setting for a movie in which the AS child is the only main character. For instance, the love for cars could offer the idea that not thinking before you act could end up as badly as a car that doesn’t slow down before rounding a sharp turn. This sort of association in any subject of a differentiated instruction lesson plan might help an AS student be aware of life necessities that would otherwise go completely unnoticed.

There are many ways by which Asperger students can learn their academic subjects, just as there are many other types of kids who would benefit from a differentiated instruction lesson plan. The variety and freedom through which differentiated instruction introduces education to children simply seems like a suitable fit for the way Asperger Syndrome children tend to learn best. While there are many other aspects to Asperger mannerisms that aren’t addressed through this type of learning, it is obvious that differentiated instruction lesson plans would help AS children more than by traditional means.