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Piercing Might Cure Migraine And Anxiety, According To Some Cases

Piercing Might Cure Migraine And Anxiety, According To Some Cases

If you suffer from migraines, you know that you’ll do almost anything to prevent a migraine or to stop one as soon as you feel it coming on. From pain killers to dietary changes to acupuncture, you’ve probably tried it all at least once. But there’s one surprising new preventative measure for migraines that you may not have considered or even heard of: piercing.

Recently, a number of migraine sufferers have come forward to say that piercing the daith, a small cartilage fold in the outer ear, has relieved their migraine pain.

Here’s what you need to know about piercing for migraine relief.

Where to Pierce for Migraine Relief

Migraine sufferers who have found relief through piercing recommend piercing the daith, which is a part of bony cartilage located in the upper part of the visible outer ear.

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Although there has been no clinical research to prove that piercing is an effective migraine preventative or treatment, individual anecdotes are promising. Many migraine sufferers who have tried piercing say that it has reduced both the frequency and intensity of their migraines.

Kimberly Glatz states on Cure Bank that since getting her daith pierced, she has “definitely seen an improvement and i[piercing] worth trying.” Natalie Thompson similarly reports that as a result of her daith piercing, “[her] headache has gone from a five or six out of 10 down to a three.”

Why Piercing May Help Migraines

Proponents of piercing for migraine relief often point to its similarity to acupuncture. A treatment originating in China over 2,000 years ago, acupuncture involves the placement of tiny needles into various points of the body. Acupuncture has long been used as an alternative treatment for chronic pain, and in 2004 a scientific study proved acupuncture’s effectiveness in treating migraines and other chronic headaches.

Daith piercing is believed to work like acupuncture by exerting light pressure on a specific pressure point in the ear that corresponds to headaches. Piercing artist Dave Kurlander suggests piercing on the same side in which migraines most frequently or severely occur.

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Due to the lack of clinical research, it is not definitively clear why piercing may help reduce migraines, or whether the treatment works at all for most people. As Tammy Rome of Migraine.com points out, it’s equally possible that migraine sufferers have reported relief not from the piercing itself, but from the piercing’s placebo effect.

Regardless of the exact reason for its reported effectiveness, daith piercing is a relatively low-risk and low-cost method to try for migraine prevention and treatment. Thomas Cohn, a Minnesota-based interventional pain doctor, suggests that “[daith piercing] certainly won’t work for everybody, but if…all other solutions have failed, it may be worth investigating further.”

Tips for Piercing for Migraine and Anxiety Relief

If you’re considering a daith piercing to help relieve your migraines, keep the following tips in mind to make sure the piercing is safe and effective.

Consult with your doctor.

Always speak with your primary physician or migraine specialist before starting any new treatment, including piercing. Your doctor can advise you on common piercing concerns and make sure that your piercing works in tandem with any medicinal approaches.

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Know that piercing does not work for everyone.

Because this is not yet a scientifically proven treatment, it’s impossible to know how often daith piercings provide migraine relief. In fact, some sufferers have actually reported that piercing worsened their migraines. If your migraines have not improved within several to many months, consider an alternative treatment plan.

Start a migraine diary.

Before you get pierced, start keeping a diary of your migraine history. Note migraine frequency, type, and intensity, along with any known triggers. (Migraine triggers vary from person to person but typically include certain foods, alcohols, and environmental factors.) Continue the diary after you’ve gotten your piercing to monitor your progress.

Choose a licensed practitioner to pierce you.

Just like any other elective piercing, be sure to choose a piercing studio that is clean, reputable, and licensed. Read reviews of local piercing studios, and if possible, choose one that has experience with piercing for migraines. Discuss your intention with the piercing artist so he or she can determine the best location for the piercing.

Watch out for infection.

Because the daith and the traigus are both relatively thick areas of cartilage, they may be more prone to infection from piercing than other parts of your body. Clean your piercing according to instructions from your piercing artist, and be aware of early signs of infection. If the infection does not resolve with cleaning and over-the-counter remedies, seek medical attention.

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Do you suffer from migraines? Check out this interesting infographic about the four stages of a migraine so you can treat them more effectively.

Featured photo credit: Gustavo Malpartida via flickr.com

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Last Updated on November 11, 2019

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

4. Feed Your Brain

Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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6. Write it Down

If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

7. Listen to Music

Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

8. Visual Concepts

In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

9. Teach Someone Else

Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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