Those who suffer from migraines understand how disruptive they can be — making work difficult and cutting into our productivity. In fact, a recent article published in Neurology Reviews surveyed migraine sufferers and found that 73% estimated that their migraines cut into their productivity.
Coupled with recent statistics from the Migraine Research Foundation, which found that nearly 12 percent of all Americans suffer from migraine headaches, and it becomes clear that understanding what to do when a migraine hits is important. Rather than relying on over-the-counter painkillers or, worse, prescription painkillers, review this list of four natural migraine relief tricks.
Find Your Triggers / Change Your Diet
Diet is one of the most important factors in almost any illness. The food we eat is our body’s fuel, and eating the right things can often limit our symptoms. Common migraine triggers can include red wine, alcohol, chocolate, caffeinated beverages, and processed foods. Keeping a detailed migraine journal, using an app that tracks your headaches, or conducting an elimination diet can help you to find the right food for your body and your head.
Along with avoiding common trigger foods, eating foods high in magnesium and essential fatty acids like fish can help to eliminate migraines. Because many Americans are known to be magnesium deficient, taking magnesium supplements may also help, though nutrients gained from raw food is always more effective.
This natural remedy is often a go-to for anyone suffering from inflammation, pain, or headaches — for good reason. Ginger is known to contain powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can alleviate swelling, and maybe even prevent migraines. Using 100 participants, a 2014 study was conducted to compare the effectiveness of ginger powder to sumatriptan, a common migraine drug. What the research found was that ginger was statistically comparable to sumatriptan in effectiveness with no known side-effects.
Temporomandibular joint disorder or TMJ can cause a wide pool of symptoms including frequent headaches that can be mistaken for migraines. While common symptoms include things like jaw pain, popping or clicking noises in the jaw, or reduced jaw mobility, TMJ can also cause tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and vertigo, due to its complex relationship to the muscles and bones surrounding the skull.
If you’ve noticed other symptoms which accompany your headaches, scheduling a dental appointment may bring some relief. Your dentist can provide several drug-free treatments to alleviate TMJ symptoms.