Information and research on migraine in children and teens
About Childhood Migraine
Migraine is more than just a headache. It is a complex neurological condition where headaches are frequent and disabling. A headache is often not the only symptom. Many children and teens that get migraines also experience other symptoms with their headaches, such as nausea and vomiting or sensitivity to light, touch, sound or odours.
Migraine is common in children and teens but can go unrecognized or under-recognized. This is because migraine in children and teens may be different than what adults experience.
This site was designed to help the children, teens and families that experience pediatric migraine. There is information on migraine and what it looks like in children and teens, as well as how to talk to your doctor about migraine in your child, and a forum to connect with other families experiencing similar issues.
Researcher and doctors made this site so that you can get accurate information. Information from this site has been collected using peer-reviewed journal articles (which means that scientists in the same field checked the research before it was published and they agree the work was done accurately and without bias), if you are interested in a topic and want to learn more scroll to the end of each page to find citations.
Living with Migraine
Living with migraine can be difficult for your child and your family. Click on the pages beside to learn more about the different aspects of migraine and what you can do.
Talking to your doctor about migraine can be a very important step in migraine management. Talking to your doctor can help your child or teen get a diagnosis. Getting a diagnosis is beneficial because psychologically it helps relieve some of the anxiety around wondering what is happening and also because it allows your child or teen access to the help they need. With your doctor, you can find a migraine management plan that is right for your family. We recommend talking to your doctor before trying different complementary therapies as well as any new supplements or herbs, or over-the-counter medications. A doctor can help manage your child or teens medications and find them the right treatments to prevent migraines and stop them when they start. Talking to your doctor will also help you learn more about your child or teen’s risk of developing other disorders or illnesses that are related to migraine.
Doctors are a great resource but they aren’t mind-readers (much as we’d like them to be!) If your child or teen has yet to be diagnosed with migraine but you think that this might be the problem it is a good idea to come to your appointment prepared. Use a migraine diary or an app to track your child/teen’s symptoms and how often they occur. Try to get an idea of what triggers their migraines and what helps them go away. Did you child or teen experience any migraine precursors when they were younger? Information like this will help your doctor make a diagnosis of migraine and rule out other possible health issues that might be at play. Also, try not to downplay the pain or disability that your child or teen experiences. If you say that “it’s not that bad” your doctor will likely believe you and you might miss an opportunity to access the help your child or teen might need. Altogether talking to your doctor and getting a diagnosis should be a positive experience! Coming to your appointment prepared with an idea of what you’d like to get out of your appointment and how you are hoping they can help you is a good place to start. Your doctor is there to help your child or teen feel better and find right the right plan for them, if you tell them how you’d like help they’ll do their best to do that for you!
Talking to your doctor
Research is how we learn more about migraine. Research can help us understand better why migraines happen, and we can learn more about how to prevent them and what helps people with migraine generally.
We rely on research to learn about disorders and diseases and how to help people affected.
If you are interested in participating in a research study click below to find one in your area.
Doing a research study isn't right for everyone. Do not participate in any research that makes you feel uncomfortable or uneasy. Always ask the research team any questions you have pertaining to the research. If you do not wish to continue a research study, you may withdraw without repercussions. Check before you begin, how to withdraw if you are concerned. Only do what makes you feel comfortable and safe.