Ditch the Drugs: Learn About Our Alternative Migraine Solutions

You’re not alone if you’re living with migraine headaches. Migraines affect almost 40 million Americans, representing about 13% of the United States population. Migraines can cause throbbing head pain, and a slew of other symptoms, that can leave you debilitated for hours or days. 

Scientists think migraine may sometimes occur as the result of imbalances in chemicals, like serotonin, in your nervous system. While experts don’t fully understand the causes of migraines, the condition may be related to genetics and environmental factors. Migraine triggers can also include factors related to diet, activity, emotions, environment, hormones, and medications. 

Since migraine triggers aren’t the same for everyone, the problem can’t be solved with a one-size-fits-all approach, so medications don’t always work. When they are effective, drugs can treat your migraines -- but don’t cure them. 

While they may help with the pain, medications have some downsides. Taking the drugs means you’re dependent on them for as long as you have a migraine. And overmedicating can increase your risk of rebound headaches when the medicine wears off.

The team at Houston Spine & Rehabilitation Centers in The Woodlands, Sugar Land, and Houston, Texas, provide professional treatment for patients who suffer from migraines and other types of headaches. They have the expertise necessary to identify the source of your migraine and develop a personalized treatment plan to help you get relief from the pain and improve your quality of life. 

Here are some options for treating migraines without the side effects of medication.

Chiropractic care

Evidence suggests that people who suffer from migraines may benefit from the use of spinal manipulation or chiropractic adjustments to improve spinal function. This can reduce the stress on your system that may be causing muscle tension in your neck and triggering a migraine headache.

Depending on the source of your migraines, you may also benefit from chiropractic care that involves advice on posture, exercise, ergonometrics, and relaxation techniques. This can help relieve recurring joint irritation and tension in the muscles of your neck and upper back that may be the cause of your migraines.

Massage therapy

Research indicates that some migraine patients may respond favorably to massage therapy. Massage can boost blood flow in tight muscles in your neck, shoulders, and behind your head. 

If your migraine triggers include stress or muscle tension, massage therapy may help relieve some of these potential causes. The act of massage has a calming effect and has been proven to reduce cortisol, your body’s main stress hormone.

Massage may also help patients experience fewer migraines and improved sleep quality, according to the results of a randomized, controlled trial that used massage therapy to treat migraines. People who had massage therapy exhibited lower heart rates, anxiety, and cortisol levels during treatment. Benefits that included fewer migraines and improved sleep continued past the time of treatment into three follow-up weeks. 

Physical therapy

The extent to which physical therapy can help relieve your migraine symptoms depends on how muscles and joints contribute to the cause of your headaches. When migraine headaches occur with tension and discomfort in your neck, stretching can help relieve this discomfort.

If your headaches are caused by musculoskeletal problems that involve your neck and/or jaw, physical therapy may be able to correct the problems and possibly prevent migraine headaches from occurring. 

In some migraine sufferers, neck muscles and neck joints refer pain to the head and cause a migraine. For others, cervical spine and muscle tightness can serve as migraine triggers. By correcting the damage and defects in these areas, physical therapy can remove the source of your migraines.

Don’t let migraine pain interfere with your ability to live every day as you wish. Find out more about ways to treat migraines without drugs. Schedule an appointment by calling one of our convenient offices today.

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