Dispelling the Top 6 Myths About Migraines
Migraines are so common that about 1 billion people around the world have them. In the United States, it is one of the leading complaints related to neurological disorders, with over 39 million people suffering from them. If you’re looking for migraine help from upper cervical chiropractors in Traverse City, Michigan, keep reading to find out more about migraines and how upper cervical chiropractic care from Shift Chiropractic can help you find relief.
Learn the Truths About Migraines
As upper cervical chiropractors in Traverse City, we’re here to bring you the facts and set the record straight on some of the misconceptions about migraines. This is to help migraine sufferers get the proper care and manage their symptoms effectively.
Truth #1: Migraines are more than bad headaches.
Migraines are a neurological disorder that involves several symptoms that can be debilitating for patients. Although the headache is a hallmark sign, it may be present or absent in a migraine. The following are some of the symptoms of migraines:
- Aura or visual disturbances
- Hypersensitivity to light, smells, and noise
- Cognitive issues or brain fog
- Nausea or vomiting
- Neck or jaw pain
- Numbness or tingling in the face, legs, or arms
Truth #2: Migraines can be chronic.
While some people have episodic migraines, about 4 million migraineurs experience chronic migraines. This means they experience migraine episodes for 15 or more days in a month’s time. Around 20% of these chronic migraine patients are disabled due to their migraines.
Truth #3: Men can get migraines too.
It is a common misconception that only women can get migraines. While migraines affect more women than men (as many as 85% of migraine patients are women), men do get them too. However, the statistics are totally different when it comes to children. Boys are more prone to migraines than girls are before they reach puberty.
Truth #4: Children suffer from migraines too.
Around 10% of kids between 6 to 11 years of age experience migraines. However, many cases are undiagnosed. Migraines are believed to be hereditary to some degree. A study reported that a child has a 50% chance of getting migraines if one of his/her parents has migraines. The percentage shoots to 75% if both parents suffer from migraines. About 50% of adult migraineurs experience their first migraine attack before 12 years of age.
Truth #5: Medications may cause more migraine episodes.
Overusing medications can result in headaches and migraines. To manage migraines, many people use pain relievers multiple times a week. Taking prescription medications for 10 days or more out of a month can actually cause rebound headaches. People who rely on medications can get caught in the cycle of taking more migraine medications and pain relievers because of their rebound headaches.
Truth #6: Avoiding food triggers is not a guarantee.
Steering clear of foods that can trigger your migraines, including wine or chocolates, may help, but it does not guarantee that you can be free from migraines altogether. Besides foods, other factors can trigger migraine episodes. Here are some of the common migraine triggers:
- Food additives such as MSG
- Changes in sleep pattern
- Certain medications such as oral contraceptives
- Hormonal fluctuations
- Strong scents, including smoke or perfumes
- Weather factors like barometric pressure changes, bright sun or wind
A Unique Therapy to Manage Your Migraine Symptoms
Sometimes it may feel hopeless to continuously manage debilitating symptoms from a neurological condition such as migraines. There are many relief options for migraines, ranging from medications to self-care and therapies.
Doctors typically prescribe medications that are either preventive or taken once the symptoms set in. Many migraineurs also maintain journals where they jot down their activities and food intake to track triggers that bring on episodes. Some patients just cope by waiting for the migraine headache to subside.
The Impact of Upper Cervical Spine Misalignment
Apart from all these methods, we’d like to bring up a type of care than has been effective in managing the symptoms of migraines. Here at Shift Chiropractic in Traverse City, Michigan, we offer upper cervical chiropractic care. This special form of care does not focus on the symptoms. It resolves the root cause of some people’s migraines by concentrating on the upper cervical spine, or the meeting point between the head and the neck. Misalignments in the topmost bones of the neck (atlas and axis vertebrae) can result in various problems in the body.
- Blood flow – Restriction in the blood flow between the head and neck can bring on symptoms of migraines and other health disorders.
- Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) flow – The CSF supplies nutrients to tissues in the central nervous system and gets rid of metabolic waste. Interruption in the flow of the cerebrospinal fluid can cause inflammation, which stems from the accumulation of metabolic waste.
- Brainstem function – The brainstem facilitates the exchange of vital information between the brain and body.
How Upper Cervical Chiropractic Can Help
When there is an irregularity in any of these functions, migraine symptoms may develop. The spinal cord is within the spinal bones as they protect the sensitive nerves. The atlas and axis vertebrae protect the brainstem. If the atlas and axis are misaligned, they can put pressure on the brainstem. This can cause issues all over the body, including migraines.
Our objective as upper cervical chiropractors in Traverse City is to correct these vertebral misalignments with our gentle and specific adjustments to the upper spine. Putting the atlas back into its correct alignment will restore the smooth functioning of the brainstem and the central nervous system. Also, this starts the natural self-healing of the body. Our training in this delicate area of the spine can help us administer the best care for your condition. Many of our patients were able to fully recover and enjoy being migraine-free after receiving our care. To set an appointment with us, call us at (231) 846-8897 or contact us through our website.
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