Written by Dr Nimira Alibhoy, Upper Cervical Chiropractor
1 in 10 people experience migraines – so if you’re the 1, how much of your life do you miss out on? I’m sure you can imagine how exhausting this process can be, especially if you never know when it’s going to hit and what you might miss in the process if you’re stuck in bed, the bathroom, or a dark room. Mitigating a migraine’s intensity and duration can help get that time back.
Research reports that as many as 9 out of every 10 migraine patients cannot complete their daily tasks while suffering from a migraine. This is further shown by the 113 million days of work missed due to migraines, costing US business approximately $13 billion a year.
Migraines can zap a person’s energy and leave one feeling exhausted and unable to complete a normal daily routine. Not only do migraines affect work performance but also recreation and family time. Things such as get togethers, going to ball games, going on family vacations, and attending work events often have to be put on the back burner, so to speak, until a person is feeling better and recovered. This can take anywhere from a couple of days to an entire week.
Migraines are not just headaches but are neurological in origin. A headache is just one common symptom of a migraine. But not everyone has a headache as a migraine symptom. Also, some people experience chronic migraines, meaning they have 15 or more migraine days per month.
A migraine episode will go through multiple phases. All these phases can last from hours to days and many people have them last 3-4 days at a time.
- Prodromal phase that can include fatigue, loss of appetite, sensitivity to light, nausea, or difficulty sleeping.
- Aura phase which includes visual disturbances like tunnel vision, loss of vision, and even numbness or tingling in different parts of the body.
- Actual Migraine many of my patients have described the sensation in their head in different ways. Some of them being like an ice pick type sensation, throbbing, burning, neck pain and stiffness, drilling sensation. As well as the nausea and light, smell or sound sensitivity.
- After the main migraine attack, there is the Postdromal phase which we also call the migraine hangover. This is usually the exhaustion, fogginess, and inability to concentrate as your body comes back to its state of normal.
Seeking Care for Migraines
Most of the time, when one seeks care through his family physician or even a specialist, a prescription drug is offered to help alleviate the pain. Some medications try to stop a migraine before it gets severe, while others help block pain signals to help the person cope. Neither option has had a 100% success rate, and medications come along with unwanted side effects like:
- Weight gain
- Hair loss
- More headaches
This leaves people looking for natural, safe care. In this realm we see coke and aspirin concoctions, CBD/THC combinations, ice on the back of the head or just plain waiting it out in a dark room until the worst is over. All these options are usually trial and error and may not produce consistent results. Many do not know where to turn for reliable alternative relief.
Triggers VS Cause
In everyday life you might hear someone share what could potentially trigger a migraine for them. TRIGGERS are often what I hear people talking about, but they also usually think about taking care of them as though they are somehow going to take care of the problem or CAUSE by removing them. Removing triggers only reduces the chances of experiencing the concern that you have.
Some examples of triggers are certain foods (spicy, sweet, sour, gluten), lack of sleep, the weather or barometric pressure.
Many times, people try to help take control of their health issues by removing these triggers – stop eating the specific food, start exercising, create a better schedule for sleep or drink more water. Many times, getting rid of the trigger can help lessen the symptoms or reduce the frequency. When there is slip up and the gluten gets eaten or the rest is skipped- the issues come back again.
Some people don’t have any of these triggers though, so we have to look to find the real CAUSE. What I’ve found when working with all people is that they have some underlying injury or chronic lifestyle issues that happened in their past that is preventing their body from functioning the way it was designed. Stress will then trigger the true CAUSE of their migraine.
A Different Approach to Migraines -Removing the Cause
Working with patients is very simple. We understand that migraines are often linked to a misalignment of a person’s atlas or axis bone – the top bones of the spine. If a misalignment has occurred, pressure is placed on the blood vessels responsible for bringing oxygen-rich blood to the brain.
The goal is to re-set the upper neck area and restore proper function to the brain stem. This is done with a specific non-rotational adjustment that is barely felt. As the body changes over time, adjustments hold for longer and longer, and proper physiology is restored. Patients start to notice that their migraines aren’t as frequent, don’t last as long, and aren’t as severe as they were in the past. Many of them have even seen them completely eliminated.
We offer a natural alternative to help migraine pain that does not involve medication.
Using a gentle method, we can correct this problem, thereby helping patients experience improved health. Many have seen fewer migraines after care. Some see them go away completely.
Check out other articles with Dr. Nimira in Cannapolitan here.
About the Author
Dr. Nimira offers a unique approach to chiropractic that helps her patients see lasting results in many areas of health concern in their lives. She is one of very few upper neck specialists practicing in Southern California who focus on using science and technology to read function and make specific adjustments to the neck only when necessary. Her passion is the science of natural healing and offers limited adjustments, lasting results.
You can hear her recent podcast on migraines here: https://anchor.fm/drnimira/episodes/Mastering-Your-Migraine-ens17m
And follow her Facebook Page for health tips and resources: http://www.facebook.com/drnimira
For more information on working with Dr Nimira or finding a specialist near you, reach out here: