Thursday, June 16, 2022
HomePopularHow Does Ear Piercing Help Migraines

How Does Ear Piercing Help Migraines

No Magic Pill Erpiercing


Daith piercing is a piercing in the place where the cartilage ridge inside your outer ear, called the helix, ends above the opening to the ear canal. Acupuncture targets this area to relieve migraine headache pain. So the theory is, piercing this trigger point permanently relieves migraines.

But Dr. Estemalik says theres no medical research that supports this theory. While some people swear that a daith piercing actually gets rid of their migraines, whats probably at work is a temporary placebo effect, says Dr. Estemalik.

A placebo is an inactive treatment, such as a sugar pill, that mimics an active medication or therapy. The placebo effect happens when you believe the placebo whether a pill or, in this case, a piercing is effective. In turn, the placebo has an effect on the medical condition and can positively affect the perception of pain.

Placebos aside, there is no scientific evidence or clinical trial results that support ear piercing as a solution to migraines, Dr. Estemalik says. Theres nothing in literature Ive heard of, nothing Ive read about, nothing I have studied out there that supports such a procedure to treat migraine headaches, he says. Receiving a piercing in that area will not alter the pain pathway of migraine.

Pain And Healing Time

As with any piercing , daith piercing pain is a common worry. When compared to a helix piercing, which feels like a sharp nip, Monckton laments that the pain associated with a daith piercing feels more like dull pressure. Of course, everyone has a different pain tolerance, and whats painful for some may not be for others. Still, its widely agreed upon that a daith piercing is slightly more painful than earlobe piercings, as its placed on a firmer area where youll always experience more resistance. For the piercer, it can take skillits maybe a little more fiddly while actually installing the jewelrybut its not especially painful, says Monckton.

The healing time varies from person to person. On average, it takes around six to nine months to heal, notes Monckton. We dont encourage sleeping on new piercings until theyve fully healed, but unlike some of the outer-ear piercings, most people can sleep on a daith piercing within a couple of months. You likely wont feel sore throughout the entire healing time, but its still important to take care of it and maintain cleanliness.

Also Check: Why Is Excedrin Migraine Being Taken Off The Market

What Side Is The Daith Piercing On

You can get a daith piercing done in one or both ears. Some advocates of daith piercing suggest that it should be done on the ear which is on the sideof the part of your head that pains the most during a migraine. Thus, if you get a left-sided migraine more often, get the piercing done on your left ear.

Recommended Reading: Cream Of Tartar Under Tongue For Vertigo

Rook Piercing: What Is It And Why Could It Help With Migraines

Alternative medicines have become popular because people have had positive results. Acupuncture treatments between migraine attacks can be helpful for some patients depending on the level of response acupuncture. It can help relieve frequent acute pain and migraine attacks. City-dwellers often complain of headaches and pain related to the forehead and the temple. Although chronic pain can take a long time to cure, mild and moderate pain can be tackled with rook piercing. All you need to do is find the right place and professional to do the piercing.

In This Manner Can Ear Piercing Cause Headaches

Can A Daith Ear Piercing Help You With Your Migraines?

Are headaches a common side effect of piercings? Theres very little medical research that says new ear piercings commonly cause headaches. Headaches arent among the most common side effects of piercings. However, anecdotal evidence suggests its not an unusual side effect.


Don’t Miss: Sumatriptan Nausea

Risks Of Tragus Piercing

Tragus piercings are generally super safe if theyre done correctly. But there are still some things you should keep in mind before trying this method.

  • Healing takes time. Tragus piercings take longer than earlobe piercings to heal. It can take 6 months to a year to fully bounce back, but discomfort should chill out in a couple of weeks.
  • Go to a professional. You should never DIY a piercing at home. You also need to follow your pros aftercare instructions to reduce your risk of infection.
  • Its not for everyone. Folks who have diabetes, hemophilia, or any health condition that prevents the body from healing should avoid piercings.
  • Be careful which metal you use. You should figure out if you have a skin sensitivity before you pull the tragus trigger. Nickel is the most common metal allergy, but some folks are also allergic to other kinds like copper, stainless steel, and silver.
  • Let your doc know ASAP if you have infection symptoms like pus, itching, burning, swelling, or throbbing.

Want to know more about tragus piercing aftercare? Check out this great guide.

Daith Piercing: The Ugly

Is the daith piercing dangerous? Not quite, but it does come with risks, of course.

The piercing process itself can be painful, and the area can remain tender for weeks while it heals. As with any piercing, the ear piercing for headaches also carries a risk of infection. For a few of the people who wrote in, the experience was unpleasant:

Expect pain.“No daith piercing for me. I’m too scared.” Judy B.

They can close up if the jewelry is removed.“Tried both daith piercing and acupuncture, no relief for me with either. Had to take the daith piercings out for an MRI and they closed over anyway. Even though they didn’t work I was going to keep them because they were cute, but as a migraine sufferer you’re always having tests and removing jewelry anyway!” – Peta H.

It might make it worse, or disappoint.” I did not receive any relief from my headache piercing, in fact, I think it made them worse. I had it for 10 days, had migraines for most of those days and ended up taking it out because it was just the most terrible headaches I have ever had. Not to mention I had a rejection and now 2 weeks after having it removed I am still having migraines every day and there is pressure on the inside of my ear. I got mine pierced at a reputable establishment where they do thousands of these yearly. It is all about your individual anatomy, I’m not too sure there is a cure for migraines. Good luck to anyone who has had results, I hope it continues for you and you have relief.” – Sharon P.

Don’t Miss: Migraine Pills Side Effects

It’s Easy To Get The Care You Need

See a Premier Physician Network provider near you.

If youve ever experienced a migraine headache, you know that the pain can be excruciating and last for hours. A recent social media explosion about daith piercing has some migraine sufferers singing its benefits, despite a lack of scientific evidence to support that claim.

Daith piercing is a piercing of the inner ear cartilage that some people believe can relieve migraine headaches.

The practice is similar to acupuncture in that there is a pressure point in the same spot where the piercing is done, says Richard Kim, MD, Clinical Neuroscience Institute physician. But we dont know if it does the same thing as acupuncture.

Migraines involve nerve cells, hormones and blood vessels in the brain. Hyperactive nerve cells signal blood vessels to expand. This also releases inflammatory hormones that cause painful pulsing in those blood vessels.

Acupuncture is a holistic Chinese practice that uses thin needles placed into the skin to stimulate specific points on the body. Its used to relieve pain and treat various health conditions.

A daith piercing punctures the cartilage of the outer ear, at the spot where the cartilage ridge called the helix meets the opening to the inner ear. The practice of piercing this location on the ear has existed for thousands of years, says Dr. Kim.

I would recommend a proven treatment and on top of that, if you really want to, then you can do a daith piercing.”

Living With A Daith Piercing

Does a DAITH Piercing Really Heal Migraines? | 6 Month Update

If you decide to go ahead and get a daith piercing, there are a few things you should know about living with it. While the wound is fresh, cleaning it daily with lathered baby soap and rinsed with water is good. If the piercing becomes irritated, soak it in warm salt water for relief and healing. A daith piercing thats allowed to accumulate dirt and bacteria can cause infection in the ear cartilage, which isnt a pretty sight.

If you struggle with migraines on a regular basis and enjoy body art and jewelry, these daith piercings are a great opportunity to test a new trend and find out whether it has any merit.

DISCLAIMER: This post is strictly informational.

Recommended Reading: What Triggers Migraines With Aura

Read Also: Can Old Glasses Cause Migraines

Does Daith Piercing Work In The Absence Of Studies We Look To The Community For Answers And Insights About The Migraine Piercing

The daith piercing first gained internet fame over a year ago, but unlike most fad treatments it refuses to fade as a hot topic. This is due in part to the sheer number of testimonials available – with a wide range of experiences with the ear piercing for migraines.

Even while the internet and Migraine community buzz about the possibility of a simple treatment like an ear piercing that helps with migraines, most physicians and major non-profits are skeptical at best.

How does it work? Simply put, the daith ear piercing is done on a very specific point on a specific part of the ear called the daith.

The theory behind the ear piercing for migraines is rooted in acupuncture: the spot pierced is supposed to line up with an acupressure point that links to the digestion system.

Western medicine is skeptical about a piercing that helps with migraines because Migraine is a complicated, historically tricky disease. Unfortunately, there have been no clinical studies on the piercing to date, so there is little evidence outside of anecdotes to back up the Migraine piercing.

Even so, Migraine drives us to try crazier things than an ear piercing, and the lack of clinical evidence is not stopping many, many people with Migraine from giving it a shot.

For many, the cost/benefit seems attractive: for $40-50 per piercing, it’s less expensive and no more painful than other needle-based therapies we’ve tried.

What Do The Experts Think

Dr Chris Booth is a nationally accredited acupuncturist with several practice locations around NSW, Australia. In our discussion he raised a few interesting points:

  • The upper insertion point of the Daith piercing seems to correspond with the large intestine point used in Chinese auricular acupuncture. Large intestine channel points are often selected for the treatment of headache and migraine, and other forms of head pain, due to that channels pathway across the face, however the large intestine ear point is not one commonly used for these complaints.
  • There are other points on the ear which are more important for the treatment of migraine.
  • Other points near the Daith piercing location target the small intestine, appendix, mouth and esophagus similarly, none of which have a particular affinity with the head or migraine.
  • The location of acupuncture points on the ear are very specific. If the piercer was intending to pierce one of these points, they would really need to know how to accurately locate the point.
  • Would there be any issue with having a permanent structure, or hole, at the site of an acupuncture point? Dr. Booth responded I cant say for sure, but there are plenty of examples of traditional techniques for altering the tissues at the site of a point. These include scaring the point by cutting, burning or chemically irritating the site with herbal pastes. These techniques would leave a permanent scar over the point.
  • Simon Evans, CEO of Migraine Action said:

    Recommended Reading: How Common Are Visual Migraines

    Is There A Cure For Migraines

    “A migraine is a neurological disease,” explains Dr. Halker Singh. In simplified terms, “it ultimately changes the whole pain processing pathway in the brain.” She says at least 1 billion people in the world have migraines, making it an extremely common condition globally.

    Despite its prevalence, however, there’s currently no “cure” for migraines, though researchers are closer to finding one than ever before, says Dr. Halker Singh. In fact, “2018 was a big year in the migraine treatment world because for the first time we FDA-approved preventative treatments for migraines that are based on our understanding of migraine pathophysiology .” That year, the Food and Drug Administration approved three migraine-specific treatments: Terenumab , fremanezumab , and galcanezumab all of which are considered preventative medications as they can help reduce the frequency, severity, and length of your migraines, according to the Mayo Clinic. In 2019 and 2020, the FDA approved pain relievers ubrogepant and rimegepant , which stop migraine pain within two hours of taking in roughly 20 percent of patients, according to Science News.

    Still, if scientists are going to find a cure for migraines, Dr. Halker Singh says there needs to be more money spent on funding for research. “Despite the fact that it’s such a common disease with such a high disability associated with it, there’s really a lack of funding to fund research,” she says. “So that’s a little bit of a disconnect.”

      Heres What You Need To Know About Daith Piercing For Migraine

      Migraine Piercing: Can a Daith Ear Piercing Help ...

      A daith piercing is a piercing located in the innermost cartilage fold of the ear. Its a specific type of piercing in the ear cartilage midline toward the front of the ear . This type of piercing has been done for thousands of years, but can be quite painful due to the bony cartilage and care is required to keep it clean and prevent infections.

      The name of this type of piercing is only thought to have begun in the 1990s.

      As many of us with migraine know, when traditional approaches for treatment fail we often turn to complementary alternatives.

      Acupuncture is a common alternative approach. There are a few theories as to how the daith piercing may help those with migraine.

      Dr. Chris Blatchley from the London Migraine Clinic suggests that the daith piercing might be effective is because the piercing point is through the area innervated by the cutaneous afferent branches of the Vagus Nerve which travel centrally to an area close to the trigeminocvervical complex. Dr. Blatchley admits that the neuroanatomy of the vagus nerve is anything but simple.

      Others claim the daith piercing is effective because it occurs on the same pressure point on the ear that is used by acupuncturists to treat migraine.

      Recommended Reading: How To Cure Migraine Naturally

      Does A Daith Piercing Help With Migraine Relief

      If migraines are making your life a misery, you would probably try almost anything to relieve your symptoms.But have you ever thought that an ear piercing could help reduce your pain?

      A daith piercing is a piece of jewelry placed through a small fold of cartilage just above the entrance to your ear canal this fold of cartilage is called the daith. If you lift your finger to this part of your ear now, youll appreciate that its a tricky area to pierce. Its also fiddly to take care of afterwards, so people who have it done dont tend to change their jewelry often.

      So why get the piercing in the first place?

      Many people simply like the way it looks. But recently, daith piercing has also been suggested as an alternative treatment for chronic headaches.

      Just how much truth is there in that statement though? Is it really possible that something as simple as a body piercing could be the answer to long-term migraine relief?

      Lets take a closer look

      Recommended Reading: What Piercing Is For Migraines

      This Alternative Treatment Has Not Been Scientifically Proven

      Daith piercing is an alternative treatment purported to be effective for managing chronic migraine headaches. Although anecdotes about the effectiveness of daith piercing abound on social media and elsewhere, the practice hasnt been studied by scientists for either prevention of migraines, relief from pain, or other symptoms.

      This is important to know if youve heard about daith piercing and are thinking of trying it in order to deal with chronic or episodic migraine headaches. Despite the anecdotal evidence thats built up around this, with no scientific evidence to support it as an effective migraine therapy, experts do not recommend it.

      Verywell / Laura Porter

      You May Like: Service-connected Migraines

      What You Should Know Before Getting A Daith Piercing

      Like any cartilage piercing, daith piercings can take a while to heal around nine months, says Fox. He adds that daith piercings should be done with rings instead of barbells, as the bars tend to “flip and create more issues,” . They should also be pierced with thicker jewelry rather than a thin ring so the weight of the jewelry can be evenly distributed.

      A positive? Since daith piercings are somewhat sheltered inside your ear, they’re more protected from accidental bumps or snags that might happen with other piercings on the outside of your ear, says Fox. That said, daith piercings do come with a “considerable risk for infection,” according to research.

      If you’re pierced by a professional who’s knowledgeable and uses the correct size jewelry, you should only have soreness in the area for about 48 hours, says Fox. Piercer requirements vary by state, but the Association of Professional Piercers’s “find a piercer” tool can be handy if you’re hoping to find someone qualified in your area.

      Bershtein says that her daith piercing seemed to give her temporary relief eight years ago. “I got pierced and had one week of discomfort at the piercing site,” she says. “And for that one week, I didn’t have any migraines.” Since then, however, she says she has had “a million” migraines, and both the frequency and intensity of her migraines went “exactly right back to where it was” prior to her piercing.


      Popular Articles