Tension headaches affect almost everyone at some point during their lives, and migraines strike up to 17% of the population. As Acupuncturists and Functional Medicine practitioners, Adam Learner, LAc, Betsy Learner L. Ac., and Lindsey Sisson L. Ac. use Functional Medicine to help adults in Portsmouth, New Hampshire find fast relief from head pain at Family Acupuncture & Wellness. If you suffer from frequent headaches or migraines, contact the clinic online or over the phone to find out more.
Although people use the terms interchangeably and they share the head pain in common, headaches and migraines are two separate medical conditions with varying symptoms that affect everyone differently. The following characteristics help differentiate them.
Headaches cause achiness or dull pressure on both sides of the head. They’re usually caused by tension and don’t have any accompanying symptoms.
Migraines are intense throbbing headaches with accompanying symptoms like aura, tingling, sensitivity to light and sound, dizziness, or nausea and vomiting. Migraines tend to affect just one side of the head and interfere with daily functioning.
The scientific community still has a lot to learn about the cause of migraines, but it’s theorized that people with these conditions inherit sensitive nervous systems. Changes in internal and external environments, like hormones and weather, seem to trigger migraines.
Nervous system sensitivity also seems to affect serotonin metabolism. Serotonin levels drop during a migraine and return to normal afterward.
The practitioners at Family Acupuncture & Wellness perform a thorough intake, and sometimes laboratory testing to identify any underlying factors that contribute to headaches or migraines. Then, they create a treatment plan for you, which might include Acupuncture, Functional Medicine testing and treatments, and Chinese Herbal Medicine.
The experts use herbal medicines with analgesic (pain killing), vasodilating (blood vessel dilating), and stress-reducing properties. All three properties treat migraines and headaches at the source.
Acupuncture stimulates serotonin and dopamine release to counteract the serotonin drop that happens during migraines. The treatment also helps stabilize the nervous system and lower your body’s stress response to reduce the frequency, severity, and duration of headaches.
Massage, relaxation techniques, and other soothing activities may help reduce the stress-related causes of headaches and migraines. Your provider at Family Acupuncture & Wellness can help you identify your headache triggers, offer preventive advice, and implement a treatment program that treats the cause of your pain.
If you’re looking for a new way to treat your migraines or headaches, contact Family Acupuncture & Wellness online or over the phone for a consultation.