What are the symptoms of a migraine?

Symptoms usually vary according to the type of migraine a person suffers from; common symptoms are listed below:

Classical migraine:

  • Problems with vision: including seeing flashes and spots of light, having blurred or double vision and seeing zigzag shaped patterns.
  • A lack of co-ordination and balance
  • Problems with speech
  • Stiffness in the joints and muscles and a tingling sensation in the hands and feet

Common migraine:

  • Heightened sensitivity to light, smells and sound: many people find that loud noises and bright lights make their symptoms worse.
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Additional symptoms of both classical and common migraines may also include:

  • A lack of concentration
  • Changes in body temperature
  • Sweating
  • Needing to urinate frequently
  • Abdominal pain (which may be followed by diarrhoea)

Migraine symptoms may last up to 72 hours.

Guide to Migraine


What causes migraines?

The NHS migraine clinic

What are the symptoms of a migraine?

Which treatments are available for migraine sufferers?

Should I see my doctor?