Headaches & Migraines

Headaches and migraines are a complex and sometimes debilitating health condition. Causes or contributing factors of headaches can include muscle tension, stress, poor quality or lack of sleep, dehydration, excessive computer use, eye strain, poor alignment or posture, allergies, sinus issues, side effects of medication, food triggers, environmental triggers, high blood pressure, hormone changes, neurological issues and more. Despite the cause, acupuncture can offer personally tailored treatment that works naturally. Many doctors refer headache patients to acupuncture because it is free of side effects and very effective.

Acupuncture is more effective than medication in reducing the severity and frequency of chronic headaches, according to a new analysis conducted by Duke University Medical Center researchers.

Differential diagnosis is key to proper treatment of headaches. In Chinese Medicine we recognize that everyone experiences different patterns of headaches, and so treatment is as individualized as the pain pattern. In other words, no two clients receive the same treatment. During the intake you will be asked about every aspect of your pain: such as when it happens, the specific location of pain, the quality of the pain, what makes it worse or better, other symptoms that happen before/during/after the headache. We will also go in depth into your overall health history to find associated patterns that are important for treatment.

The goal is always to eliminate the headache pattern entirely, and in some cases this is very possible.  In other cases, treatment will significantly change or reduce the headache pattern.  Positive changes in symptoms include less frequent headaches, less intense pain, the pain resolves more quickly, and the pain may respond more easily to medication or other home treatments. Some people are able to reduce or discontinue prescription medication for headaches (under a doctor’s supervision) because of the success of acupuncture treatment. A regular course of treatment (average 6-10 sessions) is often enough to change the pattern.  Difficult cases may require longer, and some people need maintenance treatment to continue the positive changes.