Acupuncture for Chronic Headaches
Did you know there are more than 100 different types of headaches? All of them cause pain that can make it harder to concentrate and carry out your normal activities. If over-the-counter pain relievers haven’t helped, or you want to avoid the side effects of these medications, acupuncture is also an option. Several studies have confirmed the value of using acupuncture to treat chronic headaches and other types of pain.
Types of Chronic Headaches
There are five types of chronic headaches that are more common than others. You have probably heard of tension headaches and migraines, but many people aren’t aware of cluster headaches or mixed cluster syndrome. The five most common types of headaches are as follows:
- Tension headaches
- Sinus headaches
- Cluster headaches
- Mixed headache syndrome
Tension headaches are the most common type of headaches in adults and teens. The headaches cause pain that ranges from mild to moderate. Sinus headaches are often caused by congestion and pressure in the sinuses. This type of headache also causes pain in the cheekbones.
Researchers aren’t sure what causes migraines, but some scientists believe certain triggers cause changes in the blood vessels feeding the brain. Some migraines also seem to have a genetic component. In rare cases, kids have migraines that cause vomiting and other gastrointestinal symptoms. Mixed headache syndrome is a combination of migraines and tension headaches.
Headaches have many different triggers, from too much stress to drastic temperature changes. When you come to Acupuncture Balanced Health, we’ll develop a treatment plan to address your specific triggers and relieve your symptoms. These are just some of the known triggers of headaches:
- Strong perfumes
- Poor posture
- High stress levels
- Red wine
- Cold cuts
Chronic Headache Relief with Acupuncture
In 2008, a review of several randomized trials found that acupuncture reduces the symptoms associated with migraines and may even be as effective as chronic headache medications. A 2009 review showed that acupuncture is also useful for treating tension headaches. If you develop chronic headaches as the result of muscle tension in your neck and back, acupuncture is helpful for relieving the tension and helping you feel better.
Tailored Treatment Plans
Your headache trigger may not be the same as someone else’s, so it’s important to have a treatment plan tailored to your individual needs. At Acupuncture Balanced Health, you’ll meet with an experienced practitioner to discuss your symptoms before your first treatment. The practitioner will also ask you about lifestyle factors for headache, such as frequent computer use or the use of strong scents. Your practitioner may also recommend other treatments – such as herbal medicines or lifestyle changes – to ease your symptoms.
More Pain-Free Days
Acupuncture and other complementary medicine treatments can give you more pain-free days, giving you the freedom to enjoy life without worrying about headaches. If you have tension headaches, migraines, sinus headaches, or any other type of head pain, schedule a consultation with one of our gentle, caring practitioners.