Acupuncture: An Effective Way to Treat Migraines
Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese practice used since centuries to treat and cure many illnesses. According to the Chinese, there is a balance of two kinds of forces called “yin” and “yang” that keeps us healthy. When there is a disruption in the balance, the flow of “chi” or vital energy is disrupted, creating health problems. Restoring the balance is what acupuncture therapists in Auckland aim to bring about.
According to the World Health Organization acupuncture clinical trials have shown that acupuncture is effective against many conditions ranging from pain to depression. The acupuncture therapists in Auckland has on offer are effective in treating many health conditions with this ancient practice.
What is a migraine?
A migraine is one of the many conditions where acupuncture has proven effective. It is a chronic, most often hereditary condition, with debilitating headaches. In some patients, the headache is preceded by a set of symptoms called “aura” that includes sensitivity to smells, loud sounds, and light. Motor weakness, nausea, and visual hallucinations often accompany the headaches.
Medications, particularly, triptans can get rid of the pain but can have many unpleasant side effects including flushing, tightness, and pressure.
Research on Acupuncture’s Effectiveness
A review article by Hans indicates that acupuncture is effective in releasing certain neuropeptides including beta-endorphin and serotonin. Neuropeptides are a group of chemicals that control formation and distribution of pain signals. These neuropeptides have an analgesic effect in the brain which probably is the mechanism behind the pain relief that patients experience. A systematic Cochrane review found that acupuncture was more effective than prophylactic drugs in achieving symptomatic relief and had fewer side effects.
Another clinical trial compared the effect of acupuncture to that of topiramate – a commonly used drug to treat migraine- in 66 migraine sufferers. The trial randomly assigned either acupuncture or topiramate treatment to the patients. The researchers found that the frequency of migraine attacks were reduced significantly. Furthermore, while only 6% of those who received acupuncture reported side effects, 66% of those who took topiramate reported adverse effects.
A case study published in the Global Advances in Health and Medicine highlights the history of a 32 year old woman who had a history of migraine for over ten years. The pain rating she gave was 10 out of 10 on the pain scale. A diagnosis of flare up of liver fire was made along with accumulation of phlegm. The acupuncture treatment was carried out weekly for a period of six weeks and her diet was modified to cut down on fats and sugars. After the treatment the patient did not have any episode of migraine apart from a headache that was scored five out of ten on the pain scale. The patient remained migraine free at her eighth month follow-up after the treatment.
Contacting the professional acupuncture therapists in Auckland is the best way to get your migraine treated.