Massage and Migraines
Migraines are often considered to be a type of headache, but they are in a class of their own when it comes to symptoms. Nausea, light sensitivity, sound sensitivity, and vertigo are just a small sample of things that accompany migraines, and the list of what causes or contributes to them is just as long. If you have migraines you likely have given up many of your favorite foods, have had to commit to a consistent sleep schedule, and taken medications that have a worrying list of side effects. Even with all this, migraines still strike, leaving you frustrated. Massage therapy could be what you need.
How Massage Therapy helps migraine pain:
Treats relief points in muscles: Muscles that are tight, overused, or otherwise dysfunctional have knots in them called trigger points. Often called relief points or pressure points, these areas feel tender when pressed on, and relieve pain when they resolve. These knots are small areas in a muscle that are stuck in a contracted position, depriving the area of circulation. Over time, they start referring pain to other areas. In migraine cases, there are often many of these relief points in tight neck muscles, shoulders, and the face.
Treats general muscle tension: Not all tense muscles have trigger points, but they still contribute to migraines. When a muscle is tight, it is stuck in a contracted position. Over time, other muscles will be pulled on, causing them to overstretch and weaken. When this happens, the nerves running through the area will have more physical pressure placed on them. Massage returns the muscles to a normal tone, so the nerves aren’t being impinged. This is particularly helpful for people dealing with migraines! Treating certain muscles on the face takes pressure off the trigeminal nerve, which is a big factor in migraines.
Calms down nerves that are in overdrive: Another way massage is helpful for nerves is that it can slow down a ramped up nervous system. Nerve endings can have “memory” the way muscles do. They get accustomed to being edgy, and send pain signals even if there is nothing there. Massage itself has a soothing element, and that simple stress relief helps ramped up nerve endings slow down.
Thinking of trying a massage to relieve your migraines?
If you are ready to try massage therapy to manage your migraines, I am the therapist to work with. I have been specializing in pain management for almost 10 years and I maintain a clean, scent free office out of consideration for sensitivities. I welcome any calls or emails if you have any questions.