Did you know that 15% of the American population suffers from headaches and migraines and that 90% of them cannot live or work normally when a migraine attacks? Migraines and headaches are disabling, to say the least. They can make your life a living hell.
When it comes to alleviating migraine pain, most people tend to use over-the-counter pills and pray it goes away. However, these come with a host of side effects, including a racing heartbeat, fatigue, nausea, among others. Fortunately, there are better treatment alternatives which are both safer and effective.
Chiropractic Care for Migraines
Chiropractic treatments work by aligning certain body parts, mostly the spine, as a way of improving the body’s function and mobility and generally letting the body heal itself naturally. Most chiropractors adjust the spine by moving it, manipulation it, and stretching it.
When your spine isn’t properly aligned, all the nerves running from the spinal cord to the rest of the body can be tampered with. This can negatively impact your health in a number of ways. Migraines just so happen to be among the possible outcomes. Treatments that don’t address these misalignments will only cause the pain to reoccur. The goal of chiropractic care is to offer relief alongside overall and permanent wellness.
What Does Research Say?
Chiropractic care combines a number of strategies such as spinal manipulations, massage, and exercised to manage headaches. Several studies have been conducted on the correlation between spinal manipulation and alleviating tension headaches as well as those that stem from the neck. One report published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics claims that techniques used in chiropractic care can improve the outcome of the treatment of chronic and acute neck pain. Another study done in 2011 and printed in the same journal showed that chiropractic care, specifically spinal manipulation enhances migraine and cervicogenic headaches. Most of the available research is based on spinal manipulation and its great benefits for the back, neck, joint conditions, and migraines.
Chiropractic Techniques for Migraines
Migraines are extreme headaches which can be accompanied by nausea and dizziness. Chiropractic therapy techniques that help alleviate migraines include the following:
- Spinal Manipulation: This approach is where a skilled and trained chiropractor uses their bare hands or a special device to apply some force on a certain portion of your spine. In most cases, the upper part of your spine (the cervical spine) is the main region of focus when treating cervicogenic headaches.
- Neuromuscular Massage: Your Demaine Chiropractic Charlotte massages your body with special focus to certain trigger points like the neck, back, head, and shoulder in a bid to ease symptoms.
- Multidisciplinary Care Intervention: As you might have guessed, this technique combines relaxation techniques, physical therapy exercises, dietary counseling, and stress management to reduce a migraine’s frequency, pain, duration, and disability.
Side Effects of Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic therapy has minor and temporary side effects including fatigue, headaches, and soreness/discomfort at the specific area where the adjustment took place. Other rare side effects including stroke, damage to herniated discs, and pinched nerves have also been reported.
Your quality of life largely impacts your migraines. For example, poor sleep patterns can trigger a migraine as would an unhealthy diet and lack of exercise. Before going in for chiropractic intervention, it is a good idea to adjust your life to handle such triggers.
When treating migraines, there’s enough scientific evidence that spinal manipulation can help alleviate the pain significantly. It is a natural method with temporary and minor side effects but which works like charm. However, before you go the chiropractic care route, consider adjusting your lifestyle to avoid common migraine triggers such as lack of sleep, exercise and poor diet.