Does Chiropractic Care For Migraine Work?

Are you experiencing throbbing pain in your head? Is the headache accompanied by eye and neck pain and causes blurred vision? If yes, then you’re not alone since almost more than 37 million people all over the United States suffer from migraine headaches. You may have tried several remedies to overcome this debilitating pain. You may have tried painkiller after painkiller in an attempt to alleviate your pain. But, we have something else that might work for you: chiropractors for migraines!

Chiropractic care for migraines focuses on relieving excruciating headaches through professional techniques. They use hands-on manipulation of the spine to relieve tension in the vessels and nerves supplying the head. Increased tension in these structures causes migraines. Therefore, with proper spine manipulation techniques, the migraine can improve greatly. Suppose you have not tried a chiropractor migraine specialist yet. In that case, you should give it a try because chiropractic migraines treatment is considered a promising approach to managing the condition by many people.

Exploring The Triggers Behind Migraine Attacks

People who suffer from migraines should start by identifying triggers that seem to kick off an attack and bring about symptoms. Some of the commonest triggers that you may experience due to a migraine headache include the following.

• Stress, exhaustion, and other extreme emotions                                                    • Biological and environmental changes (hormonal fluctuations or exposure to bright lights or strong smells)                                                                                          • Disturbances in sleeping pattern or lack of sleep                                                    • Flickering or glaring lights • Changes in the weather                                                • Consuming certain foods and drinks (coffee, cheese, etc.)

The Chemistry Behind Migraines

Studies carried out previously suggested that migraine symptoms occur possibly due to fluctuations in blood flow going to the brain. Overtime, scientists found out that changes in blood flow and the dynamics of the blood vessels aren't the only factors behind the pain. However, they do contribute towards it.

With advancements in technology and better research methods, the cause behind migraine pain has shifted towards the source of the dissecting problem. More than the influence of the blood vessels, it is now understood that certain chemical compounds and hormones inside our brain impact neural pathways that bring about pain. Compounds such as serotonin and estrogen play a crucial role in pain sensitivity for those suffering from migraines.

Another aspect of migraine pain theory dives deep into the fact that the pain that occurs happens due to waves of activity brought about by groups of excitable brain cells. The waves trigger the release of chemicals, such as serotonin, which constricts blood vessels.

Serotonin is a potent vasoconstrictor and plays a key role in narrowing blood vessels. Therefore, it forms the necessary communication between nerve cells and can cause narrowing of blood vessels throughout the human body.

Due to the change in serotonin or estrogen levels, the person suffers from a migraine attack. Serotonin levels can influence the neural pathways of both sexes, but fluctuating estrogen levels impact only women.

For women who are of childbearing age, estrogen levels naturally vary throughout their menstrual cycle every month. Even for menopausal women, the amount of estrogen decreases overtime. Thus, migraines in women are often linked to fluctuating hormone levels, which explains why women tend to be more at risk of suffering from migraines than men.

But what does estrogen do that causes migraines? Research suggests that whenever estrogen levels rise or fall, there are contractions in blood vessels. Due to the contraction of the blood vessel, the person starts to encounter an excruciating headache, which is often described as a 'throbbing pain.'

Some studies also show that a fall in the estrogen levels makes the facial and scalp nerves more sensitive to pain.

Your brain responds to the activation of the brainstem by releasing chemicals known as neuropeptides, including noradrenalin, prostaglandins, etc. Once they are released, they travel to the outermost layer of your brain called the meninges, which causes inflammation and swelling of blood vessels in the brain. This causes a rapid rise in blood flow around the brain.

The cause of the throbbing, pulsating pain that many people experience during a migraine is this. Even though the pain originates from the outer surface of your brain, you start feeling it in your orbital region, temple area, neck, face, and sometimes, the sinuses. These neurochemicals can also transmit signals to the part of your brain that controls the appetite, which results in nausea and vomiting.

How Does Chiropractic Treatment Help In Overcoming Migraines?

When a migraine occurs, cranial blood vessels expand the following vasoconstriction, as discussed above. Surrounding tissues in the brain become inflamed and swollen, which results in a painful headache. Some people experience such intense pain due to migraines that force them to throw up and also causes blurred vision.

The first step to provide any sort of effective migraine treatment requires an appropriate diagnosis. But when it comes to chiropractic migraine treatment, it works well for most people.

A chiropractor is a health care professional who specializes in the treatment of neuromuscular disorders. Chiropractors practice pain relief by hands-on manipulation of the spine. If there are any irregularities or misalignments in any or some parts of the spine, it can cause muscle tension and irritation of the nerves, which controls blood flow to the head. A hindrance in blood flow to the head results in a migraine.

Many people believe that neck and back pain can be potential triggers for migraine headaches. Therefore, chiropractic migraine treatment is becoming popular among health care professionals to aid their patients in bringing down the frequency of their migraine attacks and reducing the duration and severity of migraine headaches.

As you may already know that there is no definite and ultimate cure for migraines, chiropractic migraine treatment is an exceptional option that you can try to decrease the unbearable pain of migraine headaches that millions suffer from regularly.

Chiropractor migraine specialists incorporate multiple techniques to treat the source of migraine headaches instead of just alleviating the pain that exists. Chiropractic treatment for migraines works in more than one way.                            • Ensures proper nervous system communication through proper spinal alignment      • Reduces irritation of nerves that transmit pain signals to the brain                          • Decreases muscle tension, which is a common trigger for migraine headaches         • Restores proper blood flow to the brain                                                                • Enhances the body’s healing potential                                                                   • Strengthens and supports the muscles that cushion the spine                                • Identifies triggers to avoid future attacks

You may wonder why doesn’t everyone who suffers from migraine headaches goes for chiropractic treatment? Firstly, only a handful of people associate chiropractic treatment as a possible solution to migraine. It simply isn’t common to consult a chiropractor migraine specialist. We all know that chiropractors are masters of treating conditions such as sciatic nerve pain and chronic back pain, but those are just the tip of the iceberg – there’s so much more than chiropractors can do!

With appropriate chiropractic care and the right sort of guidance, you can help relieve the debilitating pain caused by migraines and consequently increase your life quality.

 

Author
Michael Kaliko DC

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