Migraines affect approximately 10% of people and can be extremely debilitating. We see many patients that come in struggling with managing their migraines. Here are some tips to reduce, prevent, and lessen the intensity of migraines.
People who experience migraines will often have things that trigger the onset of an episode. These triggers could be specific foods or food additives, stress, prolonged periods without eating, insufficient sleep, alcohol, etc. After you experience a migraine look back an reflect on what may have triggered it and try to avoid those situations wherever possible.
Stress is a common trigger for migraines. While we can’t eliminate stressful events in our lives, we can improve how we manage stress. Activities like yoga, meditation, exercise, therapy, and even creative outlets can improve our ability to manage the stress in our lives. Engaging in a regular exercise routine can improve blood flow, reduce stress, and reduce muscle tension. Meditation has been shown to reduce cortisol levels (our stress hormone) and decrease the feeling of stress along with many other benefits. In stressful times make self-care and stress management activities a high priority.
Metabolic resilience is a common compounding factor for migraines. Often, the brain’s energy systems aren’t functioning well enough to handle other burdens such as fasting, insufficient sleep, stress, etc. Working on improving your metabolic resilience may help reduce the frequency and/or intensity of migraines. You can do this by regular exercise accompanied by a diet low in refined carbohydrates and sugar, and rich in fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. This can be accomplished by including more vegetables and reducing your intake of desserts, bread, pasta, etc.
Along with a healthy diet, some supplements have been shown to reduce migraine symptoms. Magnesium has been shown to be effective at reducing migraine symptoms. Just make sure you purchase a bioavailable form such as magnesium citrate, magnesium glycinate, or magnesium bisglycinate. Riboflavin (B2) and CoQ10 have also been shown to be effective in helping prevent migraines. These help with energy production and are often found in B-complex vitamins. Incorporating these supplements along with a healthy diet may be a good discussion to have with your primary care provider.
The nerve that causes pain behind and around the eye during migraines and headaches originates between the 1st and 2nd vertebrae. If either of these vertebrae are not moving properly there can be increased muscle tension and inflammation in the area which can put tension on the nerve. This can contribute to the frequency of migraines. Maintaining healthy motion in your upper neck with chiropractic care can reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines. Chiropractic care can also reduce blood pressure and stress levels so make sure you are getting adjusted regularly!
This article was written by Dr. Matt Torres, who recently joined the Palm Desert Chiropractic Team. Dr. Matt is experienced in taking care of all kinds of patients including those who experience headaches and migraines! To book an appointment call our office at (760) 636-1540.Schedule an Appointment