We are seeing a rising number of patients suffering from migraines.
In the past, migraines were generally thought of as more intense headaches, but a migraine is something quite different.
Did you know that there are certain foods that have been potentially linked to migraines? These include aged cheese and cured meats, which contain Tyramine (a compound found in aged and fermented foods) and Nitrites. And, of course, anything containing Monosodium Glutamate, the sodium salt of the common amino acid Glutamic Acid. MSG is found in soy sauce and many canned and processed goods including soups, vegetables and meats.
Caffeine is also on the list of ingredients that might be contributing to migraines. Caffeine is, of course, a stimulant. The rise of coffee shops across America, specifically the use of espresso is among many factors that specialists attribute our rising migraine problems in this country.
When you see your acupuncturist, be sure to explain your dietary habits along with your symptoms and concerns. It’s important to treat your entire self, not just the aches and pains that are manifesting.
How can acupuncture help relieve the pain and discomfort of migraines? According to the Journal of American Medicine, acupuncture may be an effective alternative to over-the-counter solutions to migraines. In studies that compared acupuncture to “sham acupuncture” (a placebo treatment used as a control in scientific studies), patients in the true acupuncture group saw a reduction in the average number of migraines from 4.8 to 3 per month.
Migraines are not actually “headaches” where you experience pressure or aches, sometimes isolated to forehead, temples and back of neck. A migraine is actually a brain disorder. Migraines can cause intense throbbing pain in those same areas but they are also accompanied by discomfort of a sensory nature – nausea, dizziness, blurred vision, seeing spots or flashing lights, and even temporary loss of vision. A migraine can actually feel like a whole-body headache!
How does an acupuncturist treat migraines? Acupuncture changes the muscle cells at a cellular level which influences the expression of pain. It also can stimulate the body’s ability to recover from illness and pain and to heal itself.
Oftentimes migraine sufferers will turn to acupuncturists after they exhaust their medication options. Before you consider a treatment like Botox (which is a neurotoxin and something we would never recommend!) come talk with an acupuncturist to see if there is a healthier alternative!
Suffering from headaches and migraines? Thrive Acupuncture can help.