Do you suffer from painful migraine headaches? Literally millions of Americans do, and here at Winchester Neurological Consultants in Winchester, VA, our five physicians and their team of compassionate experts help people control their migraine headaches. Read on to learn more about this puzzling, often debilitating condition and how we can help.
What is a migraine?
The National Headache Foundation says that migraines are brain-based, caused by an imbalance of naturally-occurring chemicals. They may begin as a low-grade ache in one area of the head and then progress to intense, widespread, throbbing pain.
My migraines last about four or five hours. Is this typical?
Healthline says migraines last anywhere from four to 72 hours. They progress through fairly distinct phases, and as they resolve, they leave patients feeling quite fatigued. Weakness and confusion often accompany this recovery phase, as well.
My vision acts up with my migraines. What's going on?
Vision often blurs as a migraine starts. However, some people have what's called ocular migraines which express with little to no pain but cause distressing visual disturbances such as temporary blindness, zig-zag lines, stars or spots.
Can food and activity trigger migraines?
Yes, they can. Too much physical activity, lack of sleep, consumption of red wine, cheese, chocolate, and more may initiate migraines. The American Migraine Foundation reports that stress commonly triggers these headaches. A small percentage of migraine sufferers experience a warning that a headache is developing. This warning is called an aura—an unusual visual, tactile or auditory disruption.
How can my headaches be controlled?
Self-care is an important part of migraine management. Here at our Winchester, VA, office, we will assist you in identifying your triggers and will develop a treatment plan to control them. Some over-the-counter medications reduce pain and other symptoms. Additionally, cold compresses, sitting or resting in a darkened room, and massaging your temples/forehead may help. Your neurologist may recommend prescription medications, such as beta-blockers, or even injections of BOTOX to limit the movement of certain muscles of the face and scalp.
Find out more about migraines
The more you know about your headaches, the more empowered you will be to manage them. For expert and compassionate help, please contact Winchester Neurological Consultants for an in-office consultation with one of the physicians in our migraine clinic. Phone us today at (540) 967-1828.
A concussion is a serious injury. It’s important that you turn to a neurologist for care.
A concussion is a common traumatic brain injury (TBI) that results when there is a blow to the head. Concussions can result from car accidents, bad falls, or sports-related injuries. When the head sustains a powerful blow it jostles the brain around, which can damage brain cells and result in chemical changes within the brain. From the office of our Winchester, VA, neurologists, learn more about the telltale symptoms of a concussion and the treatments and rehab services we offer at our Concussion Clinic.
Concussion Symptoms Can Be Subtle
Not all symptoms of a concussion are obvious, and due to this, sometimes a parent or family member can often overlook these symptoms. It’s important that you seek medical attention right away if you or a family member is dealing with,
- Any loss of consciousness
- Changes in consciousness (e.g. suddenly sleepy; having trouble waking up)
- Seizures or convulsions
- Dilated pupils
- Double vision
- Nausea and vomiting
- Fluid draining from the nose and ears
- Slurred speech, weakness in the arms or legs, poor balance
While these symptoms might not require immediate attention, it’s still important to monitor your child or a family member if they are dealing with,
- Balance problems
- Mood changes
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Ringing in the ears
- Blurred vision
- Slowed thinking
- Trouble remembering or concentrating
- Changes in sleep
After a head injury, headaches, dizziness, and fatigue are symptoms that usually appear immediately, while mood swings and other emotional symptoms may appear later.
Treating and Rehabbing a Concussion
Since all brain injuries are a bit different, the type of treatment you will need to recover from a concussion will also be unique to you. You will need to turn to a neurology specialist in Winchester, VA, who will perform a thorough evaluation along with neurological testing to determine the extent of the injury. From there, we can create a customized treatment plan.
Our very own Dr. Fowler has worked with athletes and other patients living within the Winchester, VA, area to provide them with concussion care after a sports injury or traumatic accident. She even provides local high schools with concussion care, which includes a 20-minute neuropsychological test that checks memory and reaction time to diagnose concussions. Concussions do not require surgery, but we can recommend certain medication, lifestyle modifications, and alternative therapies and rehab to help manage your symptoms.
We also offer,
- Post-injury recommendations and advice for daily activities that are safe and which ones to avoid
- Referrals for vestibular rehabilitation to improve balance and coordination
- Assistance and monitoring throughout your rehabilitation to determine how to reintroduce you back into sports
- Cognitive testing to detect long-term issues as a result of your concussion
Concerned? Give Us a Call
If you or your child is dealing with a concussion in Winchester, VA, it’s important that you seek treatment right away. Turn to the experts at Winchester Neurological Consultants to create the proper treatment plan to help you heal as quickly as possible. Dial (540) 667-1828.
If migraines are affecting your quality of life we can help you manage your symptoms.
Did you know that migraines are the 3rdmore prevalent illness and the 6thmost debilitating illness in the world? Migraines are severe headaches that can affect both men and women of all ages, from teens to older adults. While there are some people who may experience migraine attacks once or twice a month, there are some people who deal with them daily. From the office of our Winchester, VA, neurologists, find out more about migraines and how we can help.
Is it a migraine?
So, how can you tell if you are dealing with a migraine or just a really awful headache? While a headache can be painful, a migraine is actually a neurological disease that causes severe and sudden throbbing and stabbing pain, usually originating on one side. Along with severe pain, the patient may also experience,
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Tingling or numbness in the face or extremities
- Visual disturbances (also known as auras)
Some patients may experience these symptoms prior to the migraine’s onset. A migraine can last anywhere from four hours to 3 days. Patients who have anxiety, depression or other mental disorders are also more likely to deal with chronic migraines.
When should I see a doctor about my migraines?
It’s time to see a neurologist in Winchester, VA, if,
- Your migraines are interfering with your life
- You are dealing with weekly or daily migraines
- You can’t seem to get your symptoms under control
- You are self-medicating regularly (taking over-the-counter pain relievers more than twice a week)
How are migraines treated?
Here in our office, we offer a migraine clinic, which provides diagnosis and treatment plans for patients suffering from migraines. Even though migraines cannot be cured we can create specialized treatment programs to reduce the severity and frequency of your attacks. Some of these treatment options include,
- Prescription migraine medications
- Stress management & relaxation techniques
- Diet and lifestyle changes
- Cognitive-behavioral therapies
If you are dealing with migraines in Winchester, VA, then it’s time to find an effective way to get your migraines under control. Call Winchester Neurological Consultants today to schedule your consultation.
In the US, sleep disorders are now a public health epidemic. Around 40 million Americans suffering from chronic sleep disorders and around 22 million Americans suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a condition that causes a person to stop breathing throughout the night. What makes matters worse is that approximately 80 percent of people with moderate to severe OSA are undiagnosed. The goal of our Winchester, VA, neurologists is to diagnose sleep disorders as soon as possible so that we can create a treatment plan that promotes better sleep and improves your health. Know when to turn to us.
Untreated Sleep Apnea
Sleep apnea causes a person to stop breathing multiple times throughout the night, which restricts blood flow to the brain. Along with experiencing poor sleep, extreme exhaustion throughout the day and difficulty concentrating, untreated sleep apnea can also lead to more serious health problems in the long run including,
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Heart disease
- Heart attack
To prevent these issues from happening it’s crucial to be able to recognize the symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea so you know when to seek medical attention. Common signs and symptoms include,
- Chronic, loud snoring
- Choking or gasping for air while asleep
- Morning headaches
- Sore throat, particularly in the morning
- Extreme and excessive sleepiness
- Trouble concentrating and memory issues
- “Brain fog”
- Increase in accidents
If you or a loved one is experiencing these sleep apnea symptoms it’s time to schedule an evaluation with one of our neurologists as soon as possible.
Treating Sleep Apnea Effectively
The goals of sleep apnea treatment include,
- Keeping the airways open and preventing blockages while you sleep
- Managing symptoms of sleep apnea to promote restorative sleep
- Reducing the risk for serious and chronic health problems
The most common OSA treatment is CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) therapy. Patients with OSA are instructed to wear a facemask while their sleep. The mask is attached to a pump that delivers pressurized air to the passages to prevent obstructions. When fitted properly and used as directed, CPAP therapy can be incredibly effective at treating your symptoms. It can take some time to get used to wearing a facemask while you sleep.
Our Winchester, VA, neurology consultants are happy to provide tips and advice for making the transition to using CPAP easier. When used properly, CPAP treatment can greatly reduce your risk for stroke and other serious cardiac events. Using this treatment night after night can help you get quality, restful sleep on a regular basis.
If you are experiencing symptoms of sleep apnea it’s important that you turn to a board-certified sleep physicians in Winchester, VA, who can help. Call Winchester Neurological Consultants today and let us know how we can help you sleep more soundly.
Your snoring isn’t just a problem for your partner—it can also be a problem for you. Habitual snoring affects 40 percent of men and 24 percent of women, and oftentimes, this habitual snoring is a warning sign of a common sleep disorder known as obstructive sleep apnea. If you suspect that you might have sleep apnea, it’s important that you visit our Winchester, VA, neurologists for an evaluation as soon as you can.
Is my snoring caused by sleep apnea?
While this can be hard to pinpoint on your own, if you either wake up feeling exhausted throughout the day despite getting sufficient sleep or if your partner says that you wake up gasping for air in the middle of the night, then you very well could have sleep apnea. While many people with obstructive sleep apnea snore, not everyone that snores has sleep apnea. If you are a chronic loud snorer who fits the profile above, it’s well worth scheduling a consultation with one of the neurologists here at our office in Winchester, VA.
What happens if sleep apnea is left untreated?
Obstructive sleep apnea is when the tongue or tissue in the back of the throat blocks the airways while you sleep, an effect that greatly reduces how much oxygen gets to the brain. As a result, you will often feel extremely tired even after getting, supposedly, enough sleep. If sleep apnea goes untreated, it can also lead to a whole host of serious and potentially life-threatening health problems including,
- Cardiovascular disease
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Heart attack
- Serious accidents or injuries
This is why it’s so important to seek a proper medical evaluation for your snoring, especially if you suspect that you might be dealing with sleep apnea. After all, the sooner you can treat the problem, the sooner you can reduce your risk of experiencing the above-listed health problems.
How is sleep apnea treated?
The most common treatment option for sleep apnea is CPAP therapy, a treatment provides patients with pressurized oxygen and air that is administered through a facemask while the person is asleep. This equipment is used every night to help keep the airways open.
Since sleep apnea isn’t curable, CPAP therapy will need to be used every night in order to get symptoms under control. Fortunately, most people will experience more restful sleep after just a few nights of using CPAP therapy.
Concerned? Give us a call
If you are dealing with snoring and poor sleep in Winchester, VA, it’s important that you see someone who can address the issue and find out what’s going on. Call Winchester Neurological Consultants today at (540) 667-1828 today to schedule a consultation.
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