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Naturopathic Strategies in Treatment and Prevention of Migraine

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Naturopathic strategies can help in treating and preventing migraine and headaches. Read the article below to know more.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Vishvendra Singh

Published At March 10, 2023
Reviewed AtMay 16, 2023

Introduction:

Migraine causes a throbbing pain, usually on one side of the head, accompanied by various other symptoms. It can last for two hours to days and interfere with daily activities. Medications can help in reducing or preventing migraine and make the symptoms disappear. The symptoms associated with migraine can be reduced by avoiding certain food items and additives. Yoga practice and staying hydrated also help in reducing migraine symptoms.

Which Are the Types of Headaches?

The types of headaches are:

  • Tension Headaches - Tension headaches are a common type of headache, also known as stress headaches. The onset of tension headaches is slow and last for more than 15 days. They are non-progressive and have moderate pain. It can affect both sides of the head, with tenderness in the neck, shoulder, and scalp associated with tension headaches.
  • Cluster Headaches - These types of headaches are less common. They are characterized by a burning sensation and intense pain, which are sudden in onset. They are usually localized to the area behind an eye and can last for several hours.
  • Migraine Headaches - Migraine headaches are due to neurological conditions associated with various other symptoms. In 90 % of people, migraine affects daily activities. It is most commonly seen in women than men.

What Is a Migraine?

A neurological condition resulting in painful headaches and other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light is called migraine. Migraines cannot be completely cured, but various techniques are available to reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine episodes. Migraine is associated with severe pain, sensitivity to light and sound, and nausea. It makes the normal lifestyle difficult. There are many natural treatments for reducing the symptoms caused by migraine. The drug-free method helps decrease the duration and severity of the migraine. Migraine is usually treated with over-the-counter drugs. But with the help of natural methods, the symptoms can be reduced.

What Are the Causes of Migraines?

The common causes of migraine and headaches include the following:

  • Stress.
  • Hormonal change.
  • Certain foods.
  • Food allergy.
  • Infection.
  • Blood pressure.
  • Alcohol and drugs.
  • Fatigue.
  • Dehydration.
  • Nutritional deficiency.
  • Eye-strain.
  • Constipation.
  • Environmental exposure.

What Are the Naturopathic Strategies Used For the Treatment and Prevention of Migraines?

The naturopathic strategies that can be used for the treatment and prevention of migraine include the following:

  • Certain Food Items Should Be Avoided - Some food and beverages can cause migraine, and controlling diet helps prevent the attack due to migraine episodes. Caffeine helps in reducing the symptoms associated with migraine. But it can sometimes lead to withdrawal headaches when caffeine is not consumed. The food items and beverages that can cause migraine include food containing nitrates like bacon, sausage, hot dogs, etc. should be avoided. Avoid chocolate and cheese with tyramine like cheddar, feta, swiss cheese, etc. Alcoholic drinks, red wine, and food items that include monosodium glutamate or MSG (a flavor enhancer) should be avoided. Ice cream or drinks that are cold, processed, and pickled food items, dried fruits and beans, and cultured dairy products like yogurt, buttermilk, and sour cream must be avoided.
  • Lavender Oil - Inhaling or applying lavender oil can help in reducing migraine. It can be inhaled in its pure form or diluted. It can also be applied directly to the temple to reduce the pain associated with migraine.
  • Acupuncture - It involves injecting small or thin needles into different parts of the body to give relief to different types of health conditions. Acupuncture helps in reducing migraine.
  • Peppermint Oil - Peppermint oil contains menthol, which helps prevent migraine episodes.
  • Ginger - Ginger reduces nausea and various symptoms caused by many health conditions, including migraine. It also helps in reducing the pain due to migraine episodes.
  • Yoga - Yoga includes various meditation techniques, breathing control, and various poses and body movements that help improve health and overall well-being. Yoga helps reduce the duration, frequency, and intensity of migraine episodes. It also helps reduce tension, anxiety, stress, and depression and improves blood circulation.
  • Consumption of Magnesium - Magnesium deficiency can result in migraine and headaches. Magnesium oxide can help reduce migraine, and it can also prevent hormone-related headaches like menstrual migraine. Magnesium can be consumed from almonds, sunflower seeds, cashews, peanut butter, milk, and sesame seeds.
  • Massaging - Massaging the area of the headache can reduce the frequency and intensity of migraine. Migraine is caused when there is low serotonin in the brain. Massaging helps in increasing the serotonin level and thereby decreasing the migraine.
  • Acupressure - It is the process of applying pressure with the help of fingers to a specific area or point on the body where the pain is present to reduce pain and other symptoms related to migraine.
  • Stress Management Techniques - About 80 % of migraines are related to stress. Management of stress can help in reducing the frequency and intensity of migraine. Common stress management techniques used to reduce stress include breathing exercises or pranayama, imagination, listening to music counseling, meditation techniques, relaxing the muscles, and doing more activities that reduce stress and help relax, like yoga.
  • Hydration - Drinking plenty of water will help keep the body hydrated throughout the day, which will help in reducing the chance of migraine episodes. After doing exercises and activities, keep the body hydrated to prevent migraine. In summer, one must consume more water than in winter to maintain hydration.
  • Sleeping - Poor quality of sleep can increase the chance of migraine. Proper sleep is essential for the body and mind to relax, which helps in reducing or preventing migraine.
  • Vitamins - Riboflavin or vitamin B2 help decrease the frequency and intensity of migraine. Vitamin D also helps in reducing the frequency of migraine.
  • Herbal Supplements - Feverfew and butterbur are types of herbal supplements that help decrease the pain associated with migraine, and they can also help reduce the frequency of migraine.

Conclusion:

Other therapies and biofeedback can also help in reducing migraine. Migraine is seen in families. So genetic factors can be associated with migraines, which can be intermittent or happen daily. The natural treatment of migraine helps to prevent the symptoms like headaches, nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, etc.

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Dr. Vishvendra Singh
Dr. Vishvendra Singh

Naturopathy

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headachemigraine
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