Any type of pain is exhausting and distracting. It takes precious time away from your responsibilities and the things that you enjoy. As annoying as it is, pain has an important purpose. It is your body’s way of telling you that something is wrong and needs attention. Just taking pain medication is like putting ear plugs in to muffle the sound when your fire alarm goes off! Something is askew. It’s likely that you’re having other discomforts in addition to the headache or migraine, your whole body is affected. Chinese medicine does not just treat one symptom. It looks at groupings of symptoms as a manifestation of a pattern of imbalance within the body. To treat any condition effectively we need to know your health and family history, the location of the pain, what makes the pain better or worse, triggers, and other associated symptoms. All of this, in addition to taking your pulse and looking at your tongue, provide important information about what is going on within your body.
Acupuncture treatments are customized to each person. For example, two people present with migraines. Person A may be very frail and always runs cold. He is pale and has digestive problems, frequently gets nausea with his migraines and loose stools. His migraines are worse at the end of the day and they are better with rest. Person B is very robust. She has a lot of energy and runs warm. She has no problems with her digestion but notices that alcohol is a trigger. Exercise and movement help to dissipate her pain. Many times patients with such differing constitutions and patterns are taking the same medications. However they would receive very different acupuncture treatments. The acupuncture points selected and the stimulation technique used at the points would also differ for each individual.
Here are 3 tips for preventative care and treatment to get you back on the road to feeling better!
Stay hydrated: As the weather gets warmer proper hydration is key. We typically remember to stay hydrated when we’re physically active. It is just as important to keep drinking plenty of fluids during the regular work day too. When you feel the sensation of thirst you are already dehydrated. Coffee and caffeinated tea are diuretics. For every cup of coffee or tea make sure to drink an additional cup of water. For a tasty little electrolyte drink to get you jump started click here.
Pay attention to what you eat: Unfortunately food intolerances and allergies have been the culprit of many health concerns lately. Read labels. Something that you’re eating may be a trigger. Perhaps start a food journal or log to discern help the patterns. Sometimes a reaction is not immediate but symptoms may manifest within 24-48 hours as your body is metabolizing what has been consumed. Try an elimination diet to figure out if there is a food triggering your migraines or headaches. For more information on an elimination diet click here.
Acupuncture: Chinese medicine treats the whole person not just symptoms. Since we are treating more than just your headaches and migraines, you’ll notice that you will start feel better over all. In addition to improvement with your headaches or migraines you may notice that your energy, sleep, mood, and digestion are also improving. Treatments may also help to reduce negative side effects of medications that you are on. It is and effective treatment in providing immediate and sustained relief especially combined with the self care strategies above.
To experience the benefits of acupuncture, contact me and we can schedule a time to get you back to feeling great!