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Mood Issues/Emotional Auras?

I have had migraines for more than 20 years but they have changed within the past year, becoming more frequent and with more defined and classic prodrome and aura symptoms. For prodrome I generally have energetic/focused mood and frequent urination as much as a day before and up close to the headache (within hours or overlapping the start of it) I get loss of concentration, word-finding difficulty and some sound and light sensitivity. An of Alice in Wonderland moment for excitement. It’s mostly pretty routine and my pain is not bad but 3 times in the past 4 months I have had more severe migraines that came with extreme shifts in mood just around when headache started to hit. They are hard to explain…like the opposite of rose-coloured glasses. One minute I’m normal and the next I’m panicky, sad and angry all at once. My entire outlook on everything gets distorted, the closest word for it might be paranoia. It lasts less than an hour but by then the damage to my social life is done. I actually yelled at my best friend and accused her of attacking me on Facebook, amongst other horrifying moments. (Just for clarity I have no mood issues outside of migraines and am known for being extremely calm normally. I sometimes have some slight irritability during the prodrome, but the worst of that is sarcastic comments about bad drivers and less patience to wait in long lines.) The placement of it right where my other aura symptoms are suggests that it’s one of them but emotional auras seem to be rare in migraine, and more common in epilepsy.

Does anyone else experience this? Or know of any resources on it?

Community Answers
  • glassmind
    2 months ago

    I have mood disturbances with migraine.

    Some I experience hypervigilance, irritability, and aggitation. (Aura and main pain phase)

    Others, euphoria and giddiness. (Aura phase only)

    Others anxiety and panic. (Aura amd pain phases)

    Others depression and suicideation. (Pain and postdrome phases)

    A real wollop of a migraine may have me go through all of thosee in four hours.


  • MichalSarah
    2 months ago

    So sorry for the late reply, and having to do it to all. Around the time of writing this I had a massive 10 day migraine during which it was initially thought I had a stroke. It wreaked havoc on my life and my memory. I vaguely remembered writing my original question, but then I didn’t see any responses so I thought maybe I had meant to but never did.

    I do get irritability during my prodrome, which is mostly just increased complaining and sarcasm. As the headache nears I get tired and I get frustrated with the brain fog and losing words I need. But these are all things which would be annoying at any time…I just am more reactive or less able to cope. I retain a sense of humour.

    This “paranoia” symptom is off the charts. It comes on just as the headache hits, more like an aura or allodynia. I wonder if it is related to the drop and then spike in dopamine, the one that causes allodynia. I’ve also been looking into Oliver Sacks descriptions of “forced emotions” as an aura symptom, as I definitely get “forced reminiscences” and “bifurcated awareness” during them. And yes, I used to get a lot of deja vu, deja entendu, and jamais vu. I also have had “geographic amnesia” twice, which is known to be a migraine issue (though poorly named, since I can’t read street signs during them either).
    I was tested for epilepsy via EEG multiple times, with nothing showing up. I suspect I was having acephalgic migraines at the time, because I rarely had headaches back then.
    Currently my headaches are down to 2-3 per month on a low histamine diet, from daily (up to 3 per day). I cannot find anything on histamine as an epilepsy trigger, quite the opposite, high histamine seems to protect from seizures. However, there is a lot of information about migraines and histamine (and other amines, and methylation, and so on) so I suspect migraines rather than seizures.

  • Janellen
    8 months ago

    I have brain weirdness with my aura, I feel like I’m dreaming and hear repetitive speech in my head have other feelings I can’t even describe. I experienced these feeling as a child and was told they were night terrors since they happened in my sleep. I think i was having a migraine variant of some kind as a child. My first full blown attack didn’t happen until I was 27 years old. It sent me to the hospital because I thought I was having a stroke. These auras are terrifying because my brain is generating this abnormal activity, and has to run its course. I wish someone could explain it.

  • Th3.mack
    10 months ago

    I usually get the same thing. I’ve had migraines since I was 7, and my mom has always told me(in a loving motherly way) that I turn into kind of a b*tch before I get my migraines. As I got older I noticed it in myself too, I have a shorter temper and suddenly my sense of humor isnt really there anymore

  • skipper
    10 months ago
  • skipper
    10 months ago

    I forgot to ask: Do you get deja vu?
    And here is a link to an interesting article “DIFFERENTIATING MIGRAINE FROM EPILEPSY”

  • skipper
    10 months ago

    Hopefully you have a good headache doc that can help answer questions. I, too, have that wild blend of brain weirdness, migraine and seizure activity, and it took forever to get a diagnosis. No one believed me until I had an EEG done. Have you had an EEG, and if so what results? Your symptoms sound similar to mine, except that I’m more withdrawn socially.

  • Joanna Bodner moderator
    10 months ago

    Hi there @Michal, Thanks for reaching out & for your question. As you wait for others to possibly chime in to share their experiences, I wanted to share that irritability although not commonly discussed, can be a common migraine symptom especially just before an attack. You might appreciate this article. Let me know if this overview is in line with what you are experiencing! Take good care!

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