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Piercing Might Cure Migraine And Anxiety, According To Some Cases

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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 22, 2021

Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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Simplify

I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

Absolutely.

And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

  • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
  • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
  • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

Be Mindful

You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

Reflect

As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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