Which Medications Are Used For Preventing Migraines
Preventative therapy should be considered for patients who suffer from recurrent migraines that cause significant disability, frequent migraines that require treatment more than twice a week, or migraines that do not respond or respond poorly to symptomatic treatments. Currently there are no drugs that specifically target and prevent migraines. Certain blood pressure medications as well as some antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs, and herbals have been shown to have beneficial effects in preventing migraine headaches. It’s important to understand that prophylactic medicines may not produce any significant benefits right away and maximal effects may not be seen for weeks to up to 6 months.
Although a number of medications have been used for the prevention of migraines, the medications that have been shown to be effective in controlled clinical trials, and are therefore recommended by the American Headache Society and the American Academy of Neurology migraine prevention guidelines include:
Use of topiramate can result in decreased sweating and increased body temperature. This may be especially concerning during hot weather. Wearing light clothes and drinking plenty of fluids while using topiramate during warmer months is very important. A physician should be consulted if body temperature rises.
How Can You Get Rid Of Migraine Headaches Naturally
After the initial migraine attack, you may want to manage your migraine naturally. There is a lot of good solid evidence available which seem to suggest that using natural cures to treat migraine headaches may be better. Painkillers actually interfere with the nervous system and can make a migraine headache worse, or increase the frequency of attacks.
If you suffer from migraines headaches, there are a number of natural ways to get rid of a migraine headache fast. These are the ones which I have tried and tested myself.
What Are The Best Natural Treatments for Migraine Headaches?
What Is A Migraine
A migraine is a common disorder characterized by recurrent, throbbing headaches that can last up to three days.
Several symptoms distinguish migraines from normal headaches. They typically involve only one side of the head and are accompanied by other signs.
These include nausea and hypersensitivity to light, sounds and smells. Some people also experience visual disturbances, known as auras, before getting a migraine .
In 2001, an estimated 28 million Americans experienced migraines. Research has shown greater frequency in women than men .
The underlying cause of migraines is unknown, but hormones, stress and dietary factors may play a role (
Given that evidence is usually based on personal accounts, the role of most dietary triggers is controversial.
However, studies suggest some people with migraines may be susceptible to certain foods.
Below are 11 of the most frequently reported dietary migraine triggers.
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Increase Your Turkey Intake
You’ve heard that eating turkey on Thanksgiving can make you sleepy thanks to its tryptophan. Did you know that it can also help you to find relief from migraine pain faster?
Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that stimulates dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is the “happy” chemical, one that helps us to feel great, and it is also a key component in the release of serotonin within the body. Serotonin works to relax the body, alleviating anxiety, worry, and negativity. Even more importantly, as tryptophan helps to produce dopamine and, in turn, serotonin, it relaxes the muscles surrounding the brain, soothing the capillaries of the scalp.
Image via Shutterstock
Headache Vitamin D Deficiency
A great example of getting to the root cause of migraines occurred with one of the boys friends back in grade school.
Finn suffered severe life-altering headaches at age ten.
His mother took him to his pediatrician who found that his vitamin D levels had bottomed out. He was suffering from a severe vitamin D deficiency.
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Take Vitamins Or Supplements
There are many vitamins, supplements, and herbal remedies that can alleviate or prevent headaches, especially migraines.
Devine says these natural remedies work to relieve headaches by improving your circulation, acting as an anti-inflammatory, bringing more oxygen to your tissues, providing muscle relaxation, or offering direct pain relief.
For example, Devine recommends the following:
How Are Migraines Diagnosed
To make a diagnosis, your health care provider will
- Take your medical history
- Ask about your symptoms
- Do a physical and neurological exam
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Treatment For Pregnant And Breastfeeding Women
In general, migraine treatment with medicines should be limited as much as possible when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
Instead, trying to identify and avoid potential migraine triggers is often recommended.
If medicine is essential, your GP may prescribe you a low-dose painkiller, such as paracetamol.
In some cases, anti-inflammatory medicine or triptans may be prescribed.
Speak to a GP or your midwife before taking medicine when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.
Page last reviewed: 10 May 2019 Next review due: 10 May 2022
Massage For Migraine Relief
Massaging your head is another excellent method to desolate migraine headaches. It does not allow pain signals to reach the brain.
It decreases the frequency and symptoms of migraines by stimulating specific serotonin receptors and boosting serotonin activity.
How to use
All you have to do is to massage gently in a circular motion using sesame oil. Also, add one-half tablespoon each of cardamom powder and cinnamon powder.
While massaging, press the corner of the eyebrows, middle of the forehead, and the skull base.
This practice works amazingly and gives you sound effects for longer. After massaging for a few minutes, allow it to sit for 3-4 hours and then wash it off with water.
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When To See A Doctor About Headaches
Dont power through regular head pain solo. See a doctor if youre experiencing headaches once per week or more or if they interfere with your everyday life. Not only can healthcare providers prescribe you medication, but they can also identify a potential underlying medical condition. Major red flags include:
- Headaches with an explosive onset
- Headaches that come on during certain activities
- Headaches with fever or stiff neck
- Headaches associated with changes in cognition
- Headaches with weakness or numbness
- Headaches that start after age 50
Play it safe and always seek out professional help if you have any concern about your health. The American Migraine Foundation offers resources for how to talk to your practitioner about headaches in order to help you find the best plan of action.
What Type Of Headache Is It
There are many different types of headache, and one natural remedy may be more suitable than another to ease a specific kind. Some common headache types include:
- Tension headaches. The most common headache, these often occur after a person has become overstressed and their muscles have tensed. Pain appears in the middle and top of the head, which may feel as if it has a tight rubber band around it.
- Sinus headaches. This type involves pain behind the eyes and nose and a general congested feeling in the head. A similar headache occurs when a person has a hangover.
- Cluster headaches. These headaches may appear throughout the day, causing a stabbing, sharp pain that occurs in one spot of the head.
- Migraines. Migraines usually cause a throbbing pain behind the eyes that grows and pulses throughout the head. The person may also become very sensitive to light, activity, or movement.
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Looking For A Pain Management Center In Jacksonville
Riverside Pain Physicians is a pain management clinic that specializes in even the most difficult pain management scenarios. We have several locations in Jacksonville to help you manage your pain close to home. Our center for pain management is staffed with experts who have years of experience in the field. Contact us today for more information on how we can help you with your chronic headaches. You can also
Coffee For Migraine Relief
It is considered the best homemade treatment of migraines. Coffee carries an ample amount of caffeine that blocks specific receptors and obstructs blood vessels in the brain, causing migraines.
You can say that it desolates almost all the factors that are responsible for migraines. But, you have to be careful because a high amount of caffeine can trigger migraines.
How to use
Pour a cup of water into a bowl and boil it for few minutes. Add a teaspoon of coffee afterward and let it heat for 3-5 minutes.
Consume this potent drink daily. Moreover, you can add a few drops of lemon to it to enhance its effectiveness.
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Rethink Your Sleep Schedule
To prevent migraines, Dr. Newman tells his patients to follow the mnemonic SEEDS: sleep, eating, exercise, drinking, and stress reduction. “The gene for migraines gives us basically a hyperactive or overly sensitive brain,” he says. “Because of that, any change can induce migraines.”
For example, sleeping too much or too little can induce migraines, but keeping a more regular routine can help with occasional headaches, too.
“Tension-type headaches are different than migraines in that theyre not as severe they dont have the nausea, vomiting, and light, sound, and smell sensitivities,” Dr. Newman says. “But those healthy lifestyle tips work for any type.”
In any case, that means avoiding sleeping in on the weekends or vacations and sticking to a consistent bedtime and wake time.
Other Natural Headache Relief
If your own natural headache remedies aren’t effective, consider alternatives, such as:
- Acupuncture: According to traditional Chinese beliefs, acupuncture works by affecting the flow of energy through pathways that run through the body.
- Psychotherapy: This can help you manage the effects that headaches have on your life, as well as the stresses and anxieties that may aggravate your pain.
- Physical therapy: This can provide relief for tension headaches and migraines by relaxing the tense muscles that commonly accompany tension and migraine headaches.
Pay Attention To The Weather
Changes in the weather can impact your migraine patterns. High humidity and hot temperatures can stimulate headaches, as well as rainy days. If the weather becomes uncomfortable for you, you may need to step inside and take a break from the outdoors. Of course, you cant always avoid going outside, but you can minimize your time spent in certain headache-inducing weather.
Can Stretching Help Manage Migraine Episodes
When done regularly, stretching can help calm the body and mind. Yoga is a form of exercise that combines stretching, breathing, and mindfulness. This may relieve stress and tension, which are common migraine triggers.
Theres solid research to support this effect. A 2020 study found that yoga plus medical therapy helps manage migraine better than medical therapy alone.
In a 2014 study , yoga reduced the frequency and intensity of headaches in people with migraine. According to this study, yoga and stretching might help in several ways. The practice decreases stress hormones, improving how your body responds to stress. Stretching also involves slow, deep breathing. This is thought to reset the autonomic nervous system, which regulates your bodys stress response.
Stretching loosens your muscles and releases physical tension. This can further help manage migraine attacks, as physical tension can worsen pain and stress.
Not all types of yoga and stretching are appropriate for migraine management. According to the American Migraine Foundation, gentle moves are ideal. Vigorous sequences with intense, complex postures might make your symptoms worse.
Luckily, there are many gentle moves to choose from. Read on for the best stretches for migraine pain.
Side neck bend is a gentle stretch that releases tension in the neck and upper back. You can do it while sitting or standing, making it a versatile move.
To do the stretch:
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Among These Changes Are:
Avoid consuming a lot of caffeine: It is bad for people with migraines, especially those who have migraine however, an amount between 100 mg and 150 mg per day can be positive.
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Triggers in food: Those who suffer from migraine should not consume monosodium glutamate and nitric oxide, present in foods such as aged cheeses, red wine, ramen, chocolate, Chinese foods, among others.
Sound and light: If a person is predisposed to migraines and is in front of a very bright screen with loud sounds, this can be a trigger.
Sleep: An unrecognized sleep disorder can affect a large number of migraines and their frequency.
Supplements: Supplements with magnesium, vitamin B2, and coenzyme Q10 help prevent migraine headaches.
Shelf Medication: Patients taking Excedrin Migraine or other shelf pain medications three to four times a week have more migraines.
Dr. Estemalik commented that there are factors such as temperature that cannot be controlled to prevent it from triggering migraines in people.
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Do Chiropractic Adjustments Work
Chiropractic adjustments, or chiropractic manipulations, are a very popular natural treatment method for headache relief.
Patients with migraine headaches have been visiting chiropractors for over 100 years, and with very good results.
Studies have shown that over 80% of headache patients find relief with chiropractic care.
Plus, chiropractic treatment has been shown to be extremely safe. Spinal injuries or problems do cause headaches and by correcting these spinal problems many headache sufferers find welcome relief.
However… it did nothing for my migraines. And migraine experts say NOT to use chiropractic adjustments to treat migraines – the studies show that this is not an effective treatment for migraine.
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Prescription Painkillers For Frequent Tension Headaches
Indocin , an NSAID that is available only by prescription, is “usually used for arthritis, but can also be very useful as a headache treatment,” Dr. Rozental says. “Indomethacin‘s downside is that it is among the drugs most likely to cause gastric irritation as a side effect,” including stomach ulcers and bleeding. It can also harm kidney function if taken at high doses or chronically.
Vitamin And Mineral Supplements
Research suggests that taking riboflavin and magnesium might help you get migraine attacks less often, though it doesn’t seem to relieve pain during a headache. Coenzyme Q10 may also lead to fewer migraines in adults and children, although you usually need to take it for several months to see a benefit.
Before you start, talk with your doctor to be sure it won’t have side effects for you.
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The Problem Is Migraine Is Not One Size Fits All
People are different from each other. A natural treatment that might relieve one person’s migraine headaches may not relieve someone else’s.
But at the same time, just because one migraine headache treatment does not work for one person does not mean it won’t work for you. This is so important.
There are many effective migraine relief without drugs alternatives to taking medication when it comes to relieving migraine headaches. One of these alternative methods may be just what you have been looking for.
Drink Caffeinated Tea Or Coffee
Sipping on beverages that contain caffeine, such as tea or coffee, may provide relief when you are experiencing a headache.
Caffeine improves mood, increases alertness and constricts blood vessels, all of which can have a positive effect on headache symptoms .
It also helps increase the effectiveness of common medications used to treat headaches, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen .
However, caffeine withdrawal has also been shown to cause headaches if a person regularly consumes large amounts of caffeine and suddenly stops.
Therefore, people who get frequent headaches should be mindful of their caffeine intake .
Certain herbs including feverfew and butterbur may reduce headache symptoms.
Feverfew is a flowering plant that has anti-inflammatory properties.
Some studies suggest that taking feverfew supplements in doses of 50150 mg per day may reduce headache frequency. However, other studies have failed to find a benefit .
Butterbur root comes from a perennial shrub native to Germany and, like feverfew, has anti-inflammatory effects.
Several studies have shown that taking butterbur extract in doses of 50150 mg reduces headache symptoms in both adults and children .
Feverfew is generally considered safe if taken in recommended amounts. However, butterbur should be treated with caution, as unpurified forms can cause liver damage, and the effects of its long-term use are unknown (
Foods containing them have been shown to trigger headaches in some people.
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Chamomile For Migraine Relief
It is an ingredient that carries potent qualities that work against migraine efficiently. It is a powerful agent of antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, and a variety of soothing properties.
Thus, it prevents the miserable symptoms of migraines that you are suffering from. Keep in mind that you should buy Matricaria Recutita or german chamomile that delivers sound results within a few days.
How to use
Take a cup of water in a bowl and heat it until it starts bubbling. After that, add two or three tablespoons of dried chamomile flowers in it and allow it steep for 5-10 minutes.
Strain and drink it on your regular basis to get desired upshots. You can mix a little amount of honey and lemon juice to make it a delicious and potent tonic against migraines.