Relieving Migraines is a huge priority for sufferers. But what are migraines? And how are they different from headaches? Furthermore, what are some of the best ways to get some much-needed relief? And can osteopathy help? Let’s take a look.
Firstly, we need to understand what a migraine is. Sadly, we still don’t know the exact causes. But we do know they are believed to be linked to ad-hoc changes in the brain. More specifically, the problem is believed to be related to misfunctioning blood vessels or nerves in the brain.
Unlike normal headaches, migraines tend to affect just one side of the head. They tend to cause a throbbing sensation. And they usually leave you feeling sick or more sensitive to light.
They are often brought on by tiredness or stress. Certain people are triggered by particular types of food or drink. And it is well known that the early stages of a period can trigger problems. And sadly, this helps to explain, in part, why migraines affect more women than men.
Relieving Migraines – what might help?
The easiest way to help stop the pain is to prevent it from happening in the first place. This isn’t always possible of course. But if you recognise a pattern of triggers, then you can act on those.
Clearly, if the trigger is a certain type of food, you need to avoid or eliminate that where possible. Likewise, if stress is the problem, exercise, better sleep or meditation are all possible interventions that can help.
But if you do find yourself suffering, lying down in a darkened room can often reduce symptoms. And using ibuprofen, triptans, and anti-emetics, are some of the conventional ways to stem the symptoms.
Yet, if you still need some extra help, then maybe it is time to consider osteopathy.
How might osteopathy help with migraines?
This form of therapy is growing in popularity and has been used by professional athletes, top footballers as well as everyday folk.
Increasingly, it is used to help treat migraines. More specifically, there is a subsection of Osteopathy called Spinal Manipulative Therapy. This has been shown to be a great means of reducing pressure on joints. Furthermore, it is thought to help reduce inflammation and aid nerve function.
At its root, it helps to tackle the structural imbalances that can lead to migraines.
But spinal manipulation sounds scary – is it safe?
Clearly, it is important to be in the hands of a professional. As a matter of course, you need to check that the therapist is suitably qualified and insured.
But in short, yes, it is safe. That being said, there are certain instances where this type of treatment may not be advisable. For example, if you are suffering from Osteoporosis. A good Osteopath will be sure to cover your medical history first, to unravel any contra-indications.
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