Are you among the millions of people who have migraines? If so, we've got some words of warning for you.
New research finds if you suffer from a certain type of migraine, you could be more likely to have a heart attack or stroke.
Jill Worth loves reading, but sometimes she has to put her Nook down because of the aura she gets before a migraine begins.
"It's like a flashing light. I'd be looking at you, and I'd only see half of you," Worth said.
Now Worth not only has to worry about the painful headaches the auras signal, but also the fact that doctors have discovered a link between those who have migraines with auras and their risk for a heart attack or stroke.
"There is a study out there that mentions the correlation of the frequency of migraine headaches with a two-fold increase of cardiovascular disease," Sanford Internal Medicine Dr. Maria David said.
In fact, the study showed that people with migraines with visual disturbances were more likely to have a heart attack or stroke than people struggling with obesity, diabetes or a family history of heart disease.
David says in light of the new study, she's going to encourage her patients that deal with migraines to be better aware of their heart health.
"We need to have some awareness regarding the risk of cardiovascular disease associated with migraines with aura," David said.
But that's only one way to reduce your risk.
"Also, just take care of yourself--weight loss, exercise," David said.
Those are steps Worth has taken. She's also eating healthier and on medication to prevent migraines. Because of that, she now suffers from the painful headaches just once a year, instead of every month. Still, she'll continue to be on the lookout for signs of heart problems.
"My dad died from a heart attack. Shortly after he passed away, Sanford and Avera came out with the heart screenings so I did do the screening, but everything came back fine," Worth said.
David also recommends if you have with migraines, you should keep a migraine journal, which may help you determine what's triggering your headaches and how you might avoid them without medication.