It’s an insufferable pain, but it doesn’t stop there. Along with the seemingly never-ending throbbing comes bouts of nausea so intense that it’s hard to stand up or even sit straight, and a sensitivity to light and/or sound that makes focusing on anything nearly impossible. Migraines are no child’s play, but if you’re a migraine sufferer those prolonged periods of pain are inevitable right? Not necessarily. There are some treatments that may work for you to help prevent those bouts of pain. The Migraine Institute uses a number of treatments to help prevent and treat migraines.
While doctors don’t know exactly what causes migraines, they are aware that they can be triggered by certain external stimuli, like stress or even the foods we eat. It should really be no surprise that migraines can be prevented with lifestyle changes. These changes don’t have to be super complicated or shake up your whole routine. We’ve outlined some common ones below:
- Sleep pattern: consistency is key when it comes to using good sleep to prevent migraines. This means going to bed and waking up at roughly the same time everyday, including special days like weekends and holidays. Disruption in a consistent sleep cycle may trigger migraine onset.
- Exercise: the same for sleep can be said of exercise—consistency and regularity are key. While overexertion should be avoided, research has shown that regular aerobic exercise may reduce severity and duration of migraines.
- Stress limitation: stress is a common migraine trigger, so taking a small chunk of time for yourself everyday to listen to your favorite music or even do some yoga to unwind is important for keeping your stress level down.
Preventative Migraine Medicines
Unfortunately for some frequent migraine sufferers, lifestyle changes are not enough. That’s where preventative migraine medications come into play. These types of medications can work wonders for sufferers, decreasing migraine number, severity, and duration. They are especially helpful for those with frequent migraines or those whom acute treatment medications don’t help. A small handful of these types of medications include:
- Triptans: Triptans are oft-used by migraine sufferers to treat symptoms and have steadily been found to aid in prevention as well. They can also affect serotonin levels, relieving pain in other ways.
- Botox: Botox is a type of toxin that weakens and paralyzes muscles, probably best known for its use in removing and preventing wrinkles. However, the FDA approved the use of Botox for treatment of chronic migraines in 2010. Botox inhibits the release of certain chemicals involved in the transmission of pain signals.
- Beta-blockers: While beta-blockers are often used to treat high blood pressure or heart disease, they have been shown to help prevent migraines. While the process isn’t entirely clear, their help in improving blood flow may play a role.
- Anti-epileptic drugs: Many of those who suffer epilepsy also suffer from epileptic migraines. Anti-epileptic drugs may help to prevent migraines by calming the neurons in the brain.
These are just a handful of the types of medications that can be used to treat migraines.
Natural Migraine Treatments
Those who are not interested in medications are not at a loss for treatment. There are a number of natural treatments that can be used to help prevent migraines. They can even be used in conjunction with other types of treatment. Natural treatments include:
- Massage therapy
- Chiropractic adjustments
- Cognitive behavior therapy
Not all migraines are the same. If you suffer from life-crippling migraines, contact The Migraine Institute today for more information about our various treatments or to schedule an appointment.