What Are the Best Medications For Migraine Headaches?

Q:
What are the best medications for migraine headaches?

A:
There are over-the-counter drugs available for migraine headache. Combinations of common pain relievers and anti-inflammatories may help with migraine headaches:

  • acetaminophen
  • aspirin
  • ibuprofen
  • naproxen sodium

Try not to overuse those medications since it may actually make headaches worse or may lead to ulcers or other gastrointestinal problems.

Triptans is also the most common medication prescribed for migraine headaches. They are most effective when taken early in an attack. Common triptans include:

  • Amerge
  • Axert
  • Frova
  • Imitrex
  • Maxalt
  • Relpax
  • Treximet
  • Zomig

People with high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and other conditions may not be able to take triptans. Side effects of triptans include nausea, dizziness, tingling, numbness, and chest pain.

If triptans don’t give you relief, your doctor may prescribe dihydroergotamine (Migranal) or ergotamines (Cafergot or Migergot) as tablets, nasal sprays, or injections. They are not usually as effective as triptans and also have some interactions with other drugs.

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