How I Cured My Migraine Headaches
This is a personal post and I think it is long overdue. I want to talk about headaches and migraines because I use to be a migraine suffer. Before I dive in, if you don’t like reading – I have this on my instagram page in a video format. Also, let me just mention briefly the basic difference between a headache and a migraine, because I’ve often found in practice, a person may not know the difference.
- Tension headaches often involve dull, full pressure pain that is all over the head, and may originate from tight upper back and/or neck muscles.
- Migraines are vascular types of headaches and these are often a one-sided, throbbing kind of pain. With migraines, there can also be nausea, noise and/or light sensitivity or visual disturbances.
The standard approach to treating headaches or migraines are typically with pain killers. Aspirin or Tylenol, or even the big guns like the Sumatriptan class of drugs and Naproxen. The ones I relied on for a short time included Maxalt or Imitrex. Whatever the drug of choice, the bottom line is that they never work long-term because you are never addressing the root problem.
As a naturopathic doctor I’m trained in not only taking care of the symptoms naturally, but also at looking for the underlying causes to identify what your triggers may be.
So back to my personal story. It was during undergraduate studies that I began suffering from migraine headaches. They persisted from my third year of University, after graduation and well into an office position that I held for two years, within a government job. At first, I only experienced 1-2 migraine attacks a month, then almost weekly. By the time I was in the workforce, I was experiencing 1 to 3 migraines a week where I needed to call in sick and had to stay home in bed, in the dark with an icepack on my head. As mentioned, I was taking pain killers like Imitrex and Maxalt, but it never quite stopped the pain completely. I reached a point during my pain journey in which I realized how much medication I was taking yet I wasn’t getting any better.
So, I went to go see a Naturopathic Doctor. After an extensive one-hour consultation and review of my lifestyle, nutritional habits, full health history and some physical exam, the following was prescribed for me:
- I had weekly IV Myers pushes. They took about 10 minutes and these IV nutrients are 100% absorbed into the blood stream (bypassing the digestive system). IV nutrients help to relax the muscles, and they cross directly into the cell membrane -so you will feel warm during your treatment.
- I had weekly acupuncture treatments. Chinese medicine has been around for thousands of years because it works.
- And I did 28-day nutritional cleanse with a clean protein meal replacement, a vegetable-based diet and some gentle herbs.
Within one month – I was free and clear of migraine headaches.
After years of suffering, I have remained free and clear of migraines for at least 10 years. This is my truth and this was the journey that brought me to Naturopathic Medicine as a career. Today, I no longer suffer with Migraine Headaches because:
- I understood my nutritional deficiencies
- I identified my food triggers,
- I am able to recognize stressful triggers in my life, and
- I learned how the physical tension and strain in my back and neck was contributing to my pain.
In my practice, I see a lot of headaches. This is not usually on purpose. Nor is it because anyone knows my story – until now. It just happens to be a common ailment so many people choose to live with, get use to medicating or living with the pain and give up on trying to resolve.
Sometimes for new patients, I will share my story, if it will help to motivate them get rid of nagging pain they have chosen to accept. Often, I will dive deeper into a person’s food choices and investigate food sensitivities and allergies as well as looking at hormonal imbalances. While the cause is often multi-factorial, if headaches or migraines are something that you suffer with, just reach out to a Naturopathic Physician– there is hope for you.