Migraine & Headache Treatment In Swansea
I’ll get straight to the point here (excuse the needle-based pun). Acupuncture is great for headaches.
The National Institute For Health and Care Excellence (NICE) – the body who recommend how the NHS spend their money – recommend acupuncture as effective for treatment of chronic tension type headaches and migraines. This is great because there is mounting evidence that medication for headaches and migraines may well cause more problems than it solves.
The Hidden Pain of Headache Medication – Rebound Headaches
Many people with migraine can be adequately treated when the attacks occur, but some need preventative interventions, as their attacks occur too frequently or are too severe in nature. Several drugs, such as beta-blockers and amitriptyline are used in the treatment of migraine. These drugs attempt to reduce attack frequency, but all these drugs are associated with adverse side-effects.
The withdrawal of some pain relief medications aimed at blunting the pain suffered by migraine sufferers can make things worse. Quitting long term use of paracetamol, aspirin, triptans or opiod based pain killers can worsen the symptoms they are trying to cure, trapping the sufferer in a drug-dependent cycle.
How Does Acupuncture Help In The Treatment Of A Migraine?
There have now been many controlled trials of acupuncture for migraine, with some large, high-quality ones in recent years. The results consistently show that acupuncture is significantly better than no treatment/basic care for managing migraine. It also appears to be at least as effective as prophylactic (preventative) drug therapy. There are very few contraindications or unpleasant side effects (Linde 2009, Wang 2008, Sun 2008, Scott 2008). As well as preventing episodes it is also useful in alleviating symptoms in acute attacks.
- Providing Pain Relief. By stimulating nerves located in muscles and other tissues, acupuncture leads to release of endorphins and other neurochumoral factors and changes the processing of pain in the brain and spinal cord (Zhao 2008, Zijlstra 2003, Pomeranz, 1987)
- Reducing inflammation
- By promoting release of vascular and immunomodulatory factors (Kim 2008, Kavoussi 2007, Zijlstra 2003)
- Affecting serotonin (5-hydroxytriptamine) levels in the brain (Zhong 2007). Serotonin may be linked to the initiation of migraines; 5-HT agonists (triptans) are used against acute attacks.
So why not try the natural way to alleviate your headache and migraine symptoms? Book a free 15 minute consultation below to see how I may be able to help you.
About The Author, Acupuncturist Tim Wright, Swansea
I have a BSc Honours degree in acupuncture, a License to practice acupuncture, am a full member of the British Acupuncture Council and have a licence to practice from Swansea County Council. I trained at the College of Integrated Chinese Medicine in Reading and was fortunate enough to have been supervised by some of the best acupuncturists in Europe, including authors Peter Mole and Angela Hicks.