Headache Treatments With Acupuncture

Acupuncture Treatments For Tension & Migraine Headaches

Headaches are the most common form of pain for many individuals. It's a major reason why people miss days of work or school or visit their physician. If you are looking to relieve headache symptoms, consider acupuncture for headaches. This form of alternative medicine will have you back in your daily routine in no time!

What Causes Headaches?

latelet rich plasma prolotherapy for neck pain

Headaches are pain in the head due to different causes:

  • Sinus obstruction
  • Emotional stress
  • Exercise
  • Medications
  • Injuries
  • Stress
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Environmental changes
  • Hormonal changes

While headaches can fall into different categories, there are three common types of headaches.

  • Tension headaches are generally caused by extended periods of work or emotional stress. Patients who experience tension headaches usually experience mild to moderate pain, described as constricting, on both sides of the head that often lasts for weeks or months. People who are predisposed to getting tension headaches include women and those who are middle-aged.
  • Cervicogenic headaches are chronic headaches that start from the occipital region and upper cervical joints and is experienced in one or more areas of the face and head. The pain can be worsened by neck movement and posture, Cervicogenic headache pain is moderate to severe and can last anywhere from an hour to weeks. Many times, cervicogenic headaches go undiagnosed.
  • Migraines headaches are often associated with irritability, nausea, vomiting, constipation or diarrhea, or photophobia. Migraines are preceded by constriction on the arteries, with the resulting prodrome or "aura" in which visual symptoms, such as flashes of light or blind spots occur. Migraines can also happen suddenly without a prodrome. these are referred to as common migraines. Migraines commence with the dilation of the arteries following the constriction. Migraines are typically one-sided headaches that are moderate to severe throbbing or pulsing pain and can last from 4-72 hours. Frequency of migraine episodes vary by individual.

How Are Headaches Diagnosed?

If you have migraines or a family history of migraines, a neurologist will likely diagnose migraines based on your symptoms, medical history, or a physical and neurological examination.

  • Blood tests. Your physician may order these to test for blood vessel problems, toxins in your system, or infections in your spinal cord or brain.
  • MRI. This powerful tool is used to produce detailed images of the brain and blood vessels. It can help physicians diagnose things such as tumors, bleeding in the brain, infections, and more.
  • CT scan. Using a series of X-rays, CT scans help doctors diagnose possible medical conditions that may be causing headaches.
  • Spinal tap. This is recommended if your physician suspects bleeding on the brain, infections, or another underlying condition.

Medical Treatments For Headaches

Medications used to relieve migraine symptoms fall into two categories:

  • Pain-relieving medications. Known as an acute treatment, these types of drugs are taken during headache attacks and are designed to stop symptoms.
  • Preventive medications. These types of drugs are taken regularly to reduce the severity or frequency of migraines.

Pain-relieving medications include: aspirin or ibuprofen, drugs marketed specifically for migraines, triptans, ergots, and anti-nausea medications.

Preventive medications include: cardiovascular drugs, antidepressants, pain relievers, and even Botox.

Click Here to Receive a $40 Certificate for your 1st Acupuncture Treatment and Evaluation.

Acupuncture Treatments For Headaches

Acupuncture is a component of traditional Chinese medicine that involves inserting very thin needles into pressure points on your body to restore the flow of positive energy.

This form of alternative medicine has been proven to be a beneficial treatment for headache pain due to the vascular nature of migraine headaches and the rebound effect of constant constriction and dilation of the vessels.

By removing negative energy that is causing your pain, acupuncture treatments stimulate various systems of the body and trigger a healing response.

headache treatments with holistic medicine

Acupuncture works by inserting needles into different pressure points throughout the body. The needle stimulates the nerves to release hormones (endorphins, for example) that trigger a response from your body. Thus, relieving symptoms of migraines and tension headaches.

Acupuncture points for headaches can be found on the head, neck and feet. When treating migraines, we will start with using points on the feet.

Each individual's response to acupuncture is unique. Some people notice a vast improvement immediately. Others may need more sessions because acupuncture has a collective effect on the body. Most patients should feel confident that the acupuncture is effective after six visits and acute conditions can be resolved.

Generally speaking, once your symptoms are gone treatment is no longer necessary. Some chronic conditions may require future treatments if they flare up. Chronic conditions usually take longer. Most conditions should be treated in 12-15 visits, excluding longstanding conditions such as smoking.

Alternative Treatments For Headaches

If you are interested in supplementing your headache treatments with holistic medicine, there are other options to consider.

Essential oils such as lavender has been found to be an effective treatment for acute headache pain.

Several studies suggest adopting an aerobic exercise regimen might be another alternative. Exercise may improve:

  • Circulation
  • Relieve stress
  • Increase lung capacity
  • And more

Patients suffering from migraines are encouraged to adopt an aerobic exercise routine to counteract the cause of their symptoms.

Other treatments for headaches include Graston Technique, Massage Therapy, and Chiropractic headache treatments.

  • Graston Technique, or Active Release Technique (ART), is used to break up scar tissue, muscle spasms, and reduce muscle pain associated with headaches.
  • Massage Therapy works to ease the pressure brought on during a tension-related headache. By focusing on the shoulders, neck, and head, massage can decrease the pain and discomfort caused by tension headaches.
  • Chiropractic treatments help decrease muscle spasms, trigger points, and restricted joint motions that may lead to headaches.

By combining treatments like Acupuncture, Graston Technique, Massage Therapy, and Chiropractic, physicians can reduce or eliminate chronic headaches in people who thought they would have to live with the headaches forever.


Graston Technique neck pain headaches

For individuals looking for a holistic treatment option, acupuncture provides pain relief for headaches and migraines. This treatment revolves around the premise of using the body's natural energy flow to promote self-healing.

Each individual's response to acupuncture is unique. Some people notice a vast improvement immediately while others may need additional sessions. However, most patients should feel confident that the acupuncture is effective after six visits, and acute conditions can be resolved.

Chiropractic, physical therapy, massage therapy, and acupuncture can be used alone or combined to enhance many types of treatments and injuries. Many people with chronic pain find significant relief when combining these treatments.

Alpha Chiropractic and Physical Therapy provides treatment for many patients in Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Tempe, Phoenix, and Maricopa. Most patients have never seen a clinic that combines treatments from different providers into improving your pain.

Click Here to Receive a $40 Certificate for your 1st Acupuncture Treatment and Evaluation.