The body is a holistic being. It needs to be nurtured and treated as a single entity rather than separate parts. As a naturopath, I am acutely aware of the ways in which imbalance in one part of the body can cause pain and discomfort in other seemingly unrelated body parts. I am currently studying to become a chiropractor and these links are becoming even more obvious to me. Over the years, family and friends who were initially sceptical about my medical advice have been amazed by the results when they combine alternative therapies with conventional medicine. I’m sure there are thousands of people out there who could benefit from a different approach to their health. I have started this blog to merely inform about the possibilities and allow readers to make up their own minds. Enjoy reading and best of health to you all!
If you're a migraine sufferer you'll know how debilitating the condition can be. Migraines can come on suddenly and confine you to a dark room for a day or two at a time, making it difficult to keep up with family and work commitments.
Conventional drug treatments come with side effects such as drowsiness and gastrointestinal upset and they're not always completely effective. There are drug-free ways to manage your migraines. Here's an overview of three alternative treatments:
Research has shown migraine sufferers tend to have lower levels of magnesium than the general population and magnesium supplementation can reduce the frequency of migraines. There can be several reasons for low magnesium levels such as an inherited inability to absorb enough magnesium, low nutritional intake or excreting too much magnesium in your urine.
Oral magnesium supplements are widely available, but should only be taken with the approval of your doctor as they can interact with some medications. If you see a neurologist for your migraines, ask them to check your magnesium levels and consider a course of high-dose intravenous magnesium supplementation.
Butterbur and feverfew are considered useful for the prevention and treatment of migraine attacks. Butterbur is derived from the leaves and roots of a perennial shrub that grows in both Europe and Asia. The herb is thought to reduce inflammation and spasms and can be bought in capsule form. Feverfew leaves contain parthenolide, which can reduce inflammation. It's available in capsules, as a liquid extract, or as dried leaves for making feverfew tea.
Both these herbs may have to be taken for several months before you can assess whether they are benefiting you. No studies have observed the herbs safety in pregnancy, so they are not recommended if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Chiropractic adjustment has been shown to significantly improve migraine attacks by reducing both their frequency and severity. It's thought that realigning the spine and reducing muscle tension in the neck and back can help reduce your body's response to stress, which may be a major contributing factor for many migraine sufferers. You'll require frequent sessions initially, but these will reduce gradually as your migraines diminish.
If you have osteoporosis or a past spinal injury chiropractic adjustment may not be appropriate for you, but the treatment is considered safe and suitable for most people. After an adjustment you may feel tired or a little stiff, but there are no serious side effects associated with chiropractic adjustment.
When opting for any alternative treatment you should discuss it with your doctor as medication and pre-existing medical conditions can impact on the safety and suitability of your chosen treatment. For more information, check out clinics such as Lakes Family Chiropractic Clinic.