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Migraines: A Traditional Chinese Medicine Perspective

Our wonderful Acupuncturist, Michaella, speaks to migraines from a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) perspective:

Migraine symptoms vary from mild to severe and are often one-sided, lasting for hours or days with no ease of the symptoms from painkillers.

For some, they may experience a visual disturbance before the throbbing pain or a pulsing sensation starts and may be followed by loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and/or oversensitivity to light and sound, even smell or touch.

Originating from Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture has been used for centuries as an effective treatment for acute and chronic pain reduction and regards migraines as a possible symptom or imbalance within your body due to an obstruction or blockage, preventing the free flow of blood, oxygen, and nutrients.

When factoring in the cause(s) of an obstruction or blockage preventing the free flow throughout the body, we not only look at the nature of the migraine but look deeper into the body to find the cause of the overall condition of the patient by asking questions pertaining to the location of the migraine, determining which organs’ energy channels could be associated:

  • The base of the skull
  • Forehead
  • Sides of head
  • Top of the head

And asking questions which may include:

  • Emotional stress: worry, anxiety, depression, overwork
  • Weather changes: cold, damp, hot temperatures, wind
  • Certain medications/withdrawal from certain medications
  • Inconsistent sleeping habits
  • Hormonal changes in women
  • Neck and/or shoulder tension, musculoskeletal in nature
  • Vascular problems, abscesses, injury, trauma
  • Processed foods, excessively spicy foods, fatty and greasy foods
  • Sweets with refined sugars, chocolate, food additives, coffee, alcohol (especially wine)
  • Skipping meals

If you are experiencing migraines, not getting relief from medications and/or the intensity/frequency changes, see your doctor and consider Acupuncture as an effective treatment for minimizing the symptoms causing your migraines.


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