Migraines are one of the most far-reaching and debilitating conditions that occur all over the world. Migraine headaches typically last from a few hours to around three days, and about 20 million people globally experience migraine attacks each day. Mostly women are affected 15 to 18 percent of women and 6 to 7 percent of men.
And yet, migraines are poorly treated and medically misunderstood by many health experts because of its relative complexity. Migraines are different for each person in terms of causes, and the symptoms vary as well for example migraines are often accompanied with nausea, vomiting, sweating, fever, or enhanced sensitivity to light or sound.
The Many Causes of Migraines
#Vascular constriction in the brain. The blood vessel constricts and the flow drops, then the vessels stretch and dilate as the neurons activate their pain signals.
#Sudden increase of blood flow to the brain. An increase of around 300% blood flow triggers the migraine attack.
#Unresolved emotional issues can also manifest as a migraine headache. Stress also is a contributing factor
#Brain chemical changes. When serotonin levels drop, the blood vessels become inflamed and swollen, which triggers the migraine. Also when serotonin levels drop your brain releases enzymes called neuropeptides which can cause pain.
#A brain stem abnormality. This is where most migraine attacks manifest themselves, as the brain stem is the control center for cardiovascular functions and blood flow, perception of light, smell and hearing. A disorder in this region activates the sensation of pain where there’s no pain signal being sent.
#A neurological anomaly in sections where your brain is connected. The wave of neurotransmitters that emanate from the cortex cause a stimulation in the trigeminal nerves, which in turn activate the pain signals.
Migraines May Be Due To Vitamin Deficiencies?
Folic acid, B12 and B6 supplements were found to reduce the instances of migraines and ease symptoms. Previous studies have also made the same conclusion- large doses of Riboflavin, or vitamin B2 helped stave off migraine attacks.
Gene dysfunctions and mutations may produce greater concentrations of homocysteine, which can make an individual more prone to migraines. Vitamin B12 and B6 were also of great assistance in these cases, as it directly reduces homocysteine levels. The dosage will vary according to a person’s genotype.
Vitamin D May Also Be A Factor
At the 50th Meeting in American Headache Society, findings showed that more than 40% of patients suffering from chronic migraine are lacking in Vitamin D. Furthermore, it was found that the more a person suffers from this chronic condition, the more likely that individual is lacking vitamin D. You can get vitamin D via sunlight but the best method is to get some sun.
The Best Methods For Relieving Migraine Headaches
All those who have experienced migraines agree that it is very debilitating condition. Headache medication is unreliable at best, providing only a 50% success rate for most people at half the time, not to mention a particular side effect called “medication overuse headache”. Worse, tryptamine-based medicines could potentially constrict your blood vessels, leading to serious cardiovascular failure such as a stroke or heart attack.
There are better and more natural ways to treat a migraine attack other than relying on pharmaceutical drugs. An example of it would be to avoid common triggers such as unhealthy, processed foods with too much sugar. Eat whole, healthy food and top off with water. Regular exercise also assist in staving off migraine attacks by strengthening your response to stress.
Here are some more immediate methods to try:
1. Application of Cold or Hot Packs. Heat and cold can both bring down swelling, but whether you should utilize one or the other depends on you. The best one will bring down the pain considerably and relieve the symptoms of migraine. Experiment by alternating between hot and cold water; place your hands on a basin and see which one pulls the greater pressure away from your head.
2. Sniff some Scents. The smell of bread, coffee or green apple may significantly reduce the pain that comes with having a migraine. Again, this works differently on individuals- if you’re looking for natural alternatives to treating migraine attacks, then it would be best to visit an aromatherapist for great results. Other scents to try out include eucalyptus, lavender or peppermint oil.
3. Cayenne. Fill a glass of water with 10 teaspoons and drink it down. Cayenne stimulates the brain to produce endorphins as soon as they hit the stomach lining.
4. Natural Nerve Cure. Put pressure on the nerve located just below your eyebrows. This activates your body’s painkilling defenses by stimulating the pituitary gland, telling it to release endorphins as soon as you pinch them.
5. The EFT Method. EFT, or Emotional Freedom Technique, has been proven by experts to relieve migraine with up to 80% chance of success. In some cases of EFT, the patient is freed from migraine attacks permanently.
6.Meditation has also been shown to be beneficial for some individuals, it works by calming the whole body and regulating blood flow. It is also beneficial for many other ailments as well, so long as it is practiced daily.