"There are many alternative treatment methods including biofeedback, prayer or meditation, yoga, and the most important - lifestyle changes in diet and exercise."
Foster said 52 percent of people go undiagnosed with headaches because everyone assumes they are normal. But 18 percent of women and 7 percent of men need help.
About 29.5 million people in the United States suffer from migraine, she said.
Migraines often begin as a dull ache and develop into a constant throbbing and pulsating pain that can be felt at the temples, as well as the front or back of one or both sides of the head.
The pain is usually accompanied by a combination of nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and noise. About 15 percent of migraine sufferers experience an aura - visual distortions - before an attack. Other symptoms can include slurred speech or difficulty expressing thoughts, she said.
Foster said headaches are caused by a genetic disorder, but the triggers can be anything that activates adrenaline. That could be low blood sugar or estrogen levels, or changes in pressure.
"Acetaminophen can help the pain, but it can trigger another headache - a rebound headache," she said.
The Charleston Headache and Neuroscience Center is accepting new patients and taking direct referrals.