5 Treatment Options for Chronic Migraines
If you have chronic migraines, you know how they impact your entire life. The disease can decimate careers and leave you feeling drained and hopeless. It’s one thing to have the occasional headache from an unwise overindulgence. However, migraine consists of myriad symptoms beyond head pain.
What can you do to ease your suffering if you have this condition? Multiple medical and natural treatments offer at least partial relief. Investigate the following list of potential protocols and talk to your physician. The sooner you start on your journey to an effective remedy, the more quickly you can relieve your pain.
Researchers originally developed topiramate, which goes by the brand name Topomax, to treat epilepsy. However, subsequent tests indicated it serves as an effective remedy for treating migraine disease. Since then, doctors regularly prescribe this medication as a first-line defense for chronic migraines.
Your doctor will perform tests to see if you’d likely benefit from this prescription. If they decide it’s right for you, you’ll take one pill daily as a preventive. Often, your physician will prescribe an alternative drug, such as Imitrex, for acute attacks. Unlike many pain medications, this one frequently causes weight loss, not gain, as a side effect.
You probably think of Botox as a wrinkle remedy, and the prescription does have anti-aging potential. However, it also works as an effective treatment for chronic migraines. Although it does involve a series of 31 needles to the head and parts of your neck, it requires minimal downtime and has a low risk of side effects. The ones you do experience, like fewer forehead wrinkles, are usually quite pleasant.
To qualify for insurance coverage for Botox, you’ll need to experience 15 or more headache days per month. Many patients find that symptoms recur if they stop treatment, so you’ll have to continue to get injections every three months for maximum effectiveness.
The newest weapons in the war against chronic migraine are CGRP medications. CGRP stands for calcitonin gene-related peptide, proteins that act as neurotransmitters in your brain. Doctors discovered that patients with chronic migraine have higher levels of this protein in their trigeminal nervous system. Your trigeminal nerves control your head and neck.
The antibodies in these medications target the action of this protein by keeping it from binding to the receptor. One CGRP drug currently approved by the FDA, Ubrogepant, comes in tablet form. The others your doctor administers via injection or infusion.
4. Magnesium and Riboflavin
People with both migraine disease and depression often have a deficiency in magnesium. This mineral is critical for protecting neurological health. One study administered either 600 milligrams of magnesium or a placebo every day for 12 weeks. The group that received the magnesium experienced a 41.6% reduction in the frequency of migraine attacks.
Magnesium may work best when combined with riboflavin. In another study, people who took riboflavin for six months reported half the headache days of those who did not.
5. Herbal Remedies
Herbs may also help in easing chronic migraines. The combination of turmeric and black pepper creates a powerful anti-inflammatory substance that treats many types of pain. Some herbal practitioners report success using feverfew to treat the disease.
Treat Your Chronic Migraines and Regain Your Life
You don’t have to let chronic migraines destroy your life. Talk to your doctor about the treatments above to find the relief you need.