Defined as “pain in any region of the head,” a typical headache is common and usually fleeting. For the 36 million Americans that suffer from migraine headaches every year, that definition hardly explains the suffering of the condition. They cause severe, disabling discomfort, vomiting or nausea, sensitivity to light and sound, vision problems, and even disorientation, all lasting up to 72 hours. A migraine is a neurological disorder and not your typical headache.
Migraine vs. Chronic Migraine
As if a migraine condition weren’t challenging enough, some people actually have a worse condition, called chronic migraine (CM). A typical migraine headache is also called an episodic migraine (EM), and occurs only occasionally, sometimes weeks or months apart. People with CM, however, experience them 15 or more days per month, according to the Mayo Clinic. A recent study by the University of Cincinnati Montefiore Headache Center found that a pre-existing condition of asthma might actually be a strong predictor of EM developing into a CM condition, which could lead to earlier prescription of preventative measures.
The Asthma/Migraine Connection
The research team involved in the study has considered various ideas about the findings. One looks at the role of inflammation in the body. “Migraine and asthma are disorders that involve inflammation and activation of smooth muscle either in blood vessels or in the airways,” says study co-author and director of the Montefiore Headache Center, Dr. Richard Lipton, MD. “Therefore, asthma-related inflammation may lead to migraine progression.”
“Another possibility is that patients with asthma may have an overactive parasympathetic nervous system that predisposes them to attacks of both migraine and asthma,” says Vincent Martin, MD, lead study author and professor of medicine in UC’s Division of General Internal Medicine. “It’s also possible that asthma may not directly cause chronic migraine, but that a shared environmental or genetic factor, like air pollution, which has been known to trigger both asthma and migraine attacks may play a role,” he explains.
Migraine Relief and the Chiropractic Edge
Chiropractic treatment for migraine pain and prevention is becoming a much sought after alternative to medication alone. Most of the prescriptions on the market are very strong drugs, which have many side effects and may only be temporarily effective. Chiropractors believe that some originate in the spine, and that a misalignment of the vertebrae can irritate the nerves that travel the length of the spine to the brain. This misalignment not only makes a person more prone to chemical imbalances in the brain, but can also create interference to the communication of the central nervous system. Some researchers say that realigning the vertebrae—a chiropractor’s specialty—relieves the pressure against inflamed nerves, and reduces stress and inflammation throughout the body, which can be major triggers of migraine headaches.
Considering chiropractic treatment for migraine relief?
A customized chiropractic treatment program will help you find the long lasting pain relief you need. You can trust the expertise and results we’ve achieved through decades of experience. Stop living with pain; schedule a free consultation with Health Star Clinic today.