As many as 39 million people in the US suffer from migraines. In addition, as many as 4 million suffer from chronic daily migraines, meaning they have migraines for more than 15 days out of a 30-day period. When you figure in recovery time, this means almost every day some people are coping with migraine pain or its lasting effects.
Migraines are not just really bad headaches. Rather, a headache is one of the symptoms of a migraine and it does not always have to be present when someone has a migraine. Some people have an aura, visual disturbances, or abdominal discomfort and never experience a headache. Migraines are actually neurological in nature. They usually have the following symptoms:
- Throbbing or pounding head pain often on only one side of the head
- Extreme sensitivity to light, odors, sound, or even touch
- Nausea and vomiting
- Vertigo — a spinning sensation
- Visual disturbances
The one thing on the minds of those having migraines is, “How do I make them stop?” We are going to take a look at some suggestions for home remedies that may help and then discuss a way to address the underlying issue so the pain stops occurring.
Home Remedies for Migraines
There are a number of things you can try at home that may or may not improve your migraines. It is important to remember each person is different, and each migraine is often different than the previous one. So, don’t be discouraged if these remedies don’t work for you. Keep reading to find out how to address the root cause and possibly see an end to migraines entirely. We highly recommend consulting with your medical doctor before trying any of these remedies to make sure they are safe for you.
- Omega-3 fatty acids found in flaxseed. It has been seen that some headaches are due to inflammation. Inflammation can be decreased by omega-3 fatty acids. A study was done in 2015 showing a link between a lower intake of omega-3 fatty acids in a patient’s diet and the higher frequency of migraines. Many foods contain fatty acids but flaxseed is one that is very rich in it. Cold water ocean fish are also a really good source of omega-3’s.
- Lavender oil to keep you calm. One of the biggest triggers for migraines is stress. While lavender does smell great, it has other benefits as well. Lavender is very calming and can help to decrease stress. It can be applied topically or inhaled but not taken orally. Be sure you are not allergic to it by testing a small area of skin before applying it liberally. It is not necessary to dilute it.
- Feverfew helps with migraine pain. It may seem obvious to you that feverfew is used to help with fevers. However, a study done in the 1980’s showed that 7 percent of migraine patients in the study had less migraine pain after taking in daily. It is used best as a preventative medication as it doesn’t do much once a migraine has already begun. It is important to check with your doctor before taking this.
- Dietary changes. Changing your diet can really make an impact on how many migraines you get. Certain food has been shown to impact how often you have migraines and how severe they are. It’s a good idea to keep a migraine diary to see how certain foods affect you. Foods to avoid can include the following:
- Dairy products
- Fruit — bananas, citrus, avocado
- Meats with nitrates — bacon and hot dogs
- Tyramine — found in red wine
- Fermented or pickled foods
- Peanut butter
- Scalp massage and reflexology. Doing your own scalp massages can really be helpful in improving migraine pain. General massage is good for headaches and reflexology (massaging certain pressure points in the body) has been seen to be helpful as well. But for some, scalp massage is the only way to go. It reduces tension, promotes better circulation, and helps with stress. It is important to note that some people with migraines cannot fathom the thought of being touched on the head, so this home remedy is not recommended for them.
- Basil oil reduces muscle pain. Basil is an herb that is often used in Italian dishes, such as pasta sauces and pizza. It smells and tastes good. The oil extracted from the plant can also be helpful with migraine patients. Basil has long been used as a muscle relaxant and an analgesic.
- Peppermint oil increases oxygen flow. Peppermint is a very soothing home remedy that often works great for tension headaches. Peppermint helps to open the sinuses and enable you breathe better, allowing more oxygen to reach your bloodstream and, in turn, your brain.
When More Help Is Needed For Migraines
While these suggestions can be helpful and ease up some of your migraine pain, unless the underlying cause is addressed, you will continue to get migraines. A misalignment in the bones of the upper cervical spine has been seen to cause migraines. If the top bones of the neck are misaligned, they put pressure on the brainstem and cause it to send improper signals to the brain. The misalignment also acts as a hindrance to the flow of blood and cerebrospinal fluid that reaches the brain.
We use a method that is gentle and effective when it comes to migraine care. Rather than pop the neck or crack the back, we encourage the bones to move back into alignment more naturally. This leads to a longer-lasting adjustment and no stress put on the body. Many have reported seeing relief from their migraines. Some have even seen them go away and not return.
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