If you are a migraine sufferer, you can probably relate to this scenario. You are in bed dealing with a migraine. You cancel plans with a friend or call in sick to work because you won’t be able to get out of bed today other than to drag yourself down the hall to the bathroom. The response you get from your friend or employer is something to the effect of, “You’re going to let a headache keep you down?”
The sad fact is that most people just don’t get it. They think migraine is just a code word for a bad headache. Or worse, some people think it is a made up excuse for calling in sick to work or because you feel like being antisocial today. As a result, misunderstandings may affect a friendship or a career.
We’re going to look at four facts that set the record straight by showing just how disabling migraines can be. Then we will consider a natural form of care that has been providing hope for many, even chronic migraine patients.
#1 Migraines Rank Number 6 Globally on the List of Disabling Conditions
If you think you are all alone in missing out on work or fun due to migraines, this should be a real eye-opener. The fact is that people all over the world are considered disabled due the debilitating effects that migraines can have on a person. Also, according to the World Health Organization, the number one cause of disability is now depression (it used to be back pain). A person who gets migraines is at a higher risk of developing depression, so this adds to the likelihood of disability.
#2 6 People Per Hour End Up in US Emergency Rooms for Head Pain
1.2 million of those ER visits each year turns out to be an acute migraine. This shows how bad the pain of migraines can be – more than a million ER visits in the US alone. Most people would agree that anything bad enough to cause someone to seek out emergency medical attention is definitely disabling.
#3 4 Million People Get Chronic Migraines
Most migraineurs only experience one to two episodes per month. That can be debilitating enough. However, about 4 million people have to deal with chronic migraines. That means experiencing 15 days per month or more of migraines. Some people even have to cope with chronic daily migraine. Clearly, people in this category are more likely to be disabled by the condition. Also, people who have chronic migraines are more likely to experience depression and anxiety.
#4 Over 90% of Migraine Patients Cannot Perform Normal Activities or Work During an Attack
Think about what that means for a person who gets one to two migraines per month. Since migraines can last anywhere from 4 hours to 72 hours and involve a prodrome (symptoms that occur up to a day before) and a postdrome (symptoms that can occur for up to several days following an episode), that means a person may lose a week or two of productivity per month. Now multiply that for a person who experiences chronic migraines. He or she may never experience a day with the ability to function normally. This can lead to disability, strained relationships, and difficulty caring for a home. Finding relief from migraines is vital, and medication is rarely the best option.
Finding Drug-Free Help for Migraines
If you are searching for a natural way to reduce the frequency and severity of migraine attacks, we would like to introduce you to upper cervical chiropractic. If you have tried chiropractic for your migraines before, don’t be disillusioned. Upper cervical chiropractic is very different. For example:
- The Approach Is Focused – Only the top two bones of the spine are adjusted. These two bones, the atlas and axis, play a key role in blood flow to the brain and brainstem function.
- Adjustments Are Precise – Diagnostic imaging is used to pinpoint the exact location of the misalignment and the degree of misalignment down to hundredths of a degree.
- Care Is Gentle and Tailored to You – Every adjustment is a little different because it is custom-fit to meet your specific misalignment. Also, because we are dealing with such precise measurements, there is no forcing or popping of the spine. Adjustments are very gentle, making them safe and beneficial for everyone from babies to the very elderly.
- Corrections Are Made As-Needed – The atlas and axis are a slightly different shape from the other vertebrae. This allows you to have a great range of motion for your head. It can also lead to more frequent misalignments, especially following head or neck trauma. If you have been out of alignment for a long time, it may take several weeks before your adjustments begin to hold. But once they do, you can start to lengthen your time between visits. Adjustments are only provided when a physical examination shows your upper cervical spine has shifted back out of alignment.
Now that you know some of the big differences between upper cervical chiropractic care and general chiropractic, let’s focus specifically on the benefits for migraine patients. Relieving misalignments may correct blood flow issues for the brain or restore proper brainstem function. For some migraine patients, this has led to fewer and less severe migraines. For others, it has meant complete resolution of migraines. To learn more, contact a practitioner in your area and schedule a consultation.