Chiropractic Care for Migraines
I used to suffer from terrible migraines every time the weather changed. If it had been hot and sunny for a few days and suddenly became overcast, I knew I’d soon begin experiencing the throbbing pain, nausea, aura and eye pain that typifies a migraine.
Around 18% of American women and 6% of American men suffer from migraines. Much more than just a bad headache, migraines are an extremely debilitating group of neurological symptoms, usually focused on one side of the head. More than 90% of sufferers report that migraines interfere with their careers, education or social activities, and it is common for chronic migraine sufferers to report depression, anxiety and sleep disturbances. American companies are said to lose more than $13 billion each year as a result of 113 million lost work days due to migraines.
When I talked to my chiropractor about my migraines, he said that he could help. I was skeptical - how could adjusting my spine stop my head from aching? - but sure enough, with regular chiropractic care, I haven’t had a migraine in almost two years, when previously I was averaging two or three per month.
One study of 127 participants between the age of 10 and 70 who all had at least one migraine per month found that chiropractic care was effective in preventing migraines. Half of the group received two months of chiropractic spinal manipulations, while the other half served as a control. The participants completed diaries noting the frequency, intensity, duration, disability, associated symptoms and medication use for each migraine.
The group that received chiropractic treatment showed statistically significant improvements in migraine frequency, duration, disability and medication use. 22% of participants reported more than a 90% reduction of migraines after the two months of treatment.
Another study published in 2012 demonstrated that chiropractic care reduced pain severity in migraine patients by an average of 68%. In other words, chiropractic patients had their pain levels drop from an average of 5 to 0.5 on scale of 1 to 10.
I've continued with my chiropractic treatment to prevent further migraines, and I’m happy to report that it’s working. I no longer dread changes in the weather like I used to. In fact, I can look forward to a refreshing summer storm or unseasonably warm days in winter without the threat of another migraine hovering over me. If you suffer from chronic migraines, I suggest you try chiropractic treatment too.