Treating Migraines with Acupuncture

Acupuncture for Migraines in Moorooka, South Brisbane

Michelle Blum, is a Naturopath and Acupuncturist based in the South Brisbane suburb of Moorooka. In her latest blog she looks at a recent study that validates the effectiveness of treating Migraines with Acupuncture.

There are more than 1 billion people throughout the world who experience migraines which can have an enormous impact on quality of life.

Whilst drug therapy is an effective option for some, it isn’t
always everyone’s cup of tea.

Did you know that a recent study in China which has been published in the British Medical Journal, compared manual acupuncture with sham acupuncture along with usual care ?

There were 147 patients in the study who averaged around the age
of 37. All of whom, had a history of migraines without aura.

The conclusion was made from the study, that those patients who received manual acupuncture experienced fewer migraine days as well as fewer migraine attacks than the other two groups.

It has been suggested that Acupuncture should be a preventative treatment offered to patients by doctors given that 90 % of migraine sufferers, generally have no preventative treatment available to them.

How do I treat migraines in my Acupuncture clinic ?

It is interesting how many clients visiting the clinic for migraine treatment expect that needles will be placed on their scalp or head region. Many do not realise that Acupuncture involves a complex set of meridians or energy pathways that run throughout the whole body. Often needles will be placed in parts of the body like the legs and feet to treat the head or upper body.

When assessing a patient who is suffering with migraines, I will always look for any structural mis-alignment affecting the neck and address this if it seems to be the causative factor.

I will also always be sure to ask the client if they have any head injuries or trauma and if so, I will treat accordingly. The reason for this is that past head trauma, no matter how long ago, can act as a driver for migraines and headaches, possibly causing disturbance at a later stage down the track.

In Chinese Medicine, it is thought that migraines and headaches are a symptom belonging to the Wood element which involves both the Liver and Gall Bladder meridians. These pathways are highly sensitive to stress and can easily fall out of balance giving rise to upper body heat and pain.

A Japanese style Acupuncturist will usually identify such a pattern using the neck, abdomen and pulse reading. Then needles will be gently inserted to address what the skilled practitioner deems to be the underlying cause.

Herbal medicines that address the Liver and Gall Bladder Qi may also be prescribed.

In the world of Naturopathic and Nutritional Medicine, supplements such as Magnesium will be recommended due to their effect on the muscular and nervous systems. Be sure to ask your Naturopath for the right type and dose of magnesium that will best suit your personal presentation. The oral form of magnesium is by far the more effective form with magnesium salt baths, sprays or oils being less so.

As a holistic practitioner who integrates Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine, Naturopathic and Nutritional Medicine, I will often ask my clients to bring into the clinic any recent blood tests that have been conducted. If these have not been done, I may send them off for testing to ensure that everything is as it should be.

If you would like more information about whether Acupuncture or Naturopathy treatments may be suitable for your health condition, feel free to contact the clinic here.

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