Acupuncture for the treatment of migraine headaches: an introduction

Acupuncture – one of the oldest methods of healing – focuses on stimulating specific body points. Acupuncture is a form of traditional Chinese medicine for migraines and other bodily ailments. Acupuncture has been used for many thousands of years in Asian countries.

During Acupuncture the needles are inserted up to two inches and remain in the body up to 20 minutes.

Since 1997, Acupuncture has been considered a conventional medical technique by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

Acupuncture is also used for treating:

  • Other types of headaches
  • Labor pain
  • Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting
  • Pain from fibromyalgia
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain
  • Menstrual pain
  • Muscle pain
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Dental pain
  • Tennis elbow

Acupuncture needles are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and must be nontoxic, sterile, used only once and used only by qualified practitioners.

Acupuncture for migraine relief

Acupuncture involves inserting solid, thin, metallic needles into various places on the body. Acupuncture is believed to stimulate the body’s natural painkillers, increase blood flow, stimulate nerves, muscles and tissues. The traditional Asian practice of acupuncture has the goal of balancing the body’s energy, called the body’s life force or qi or chi.

Relieving migraine pain with acupuncture

It is unclear how Acupuncture works to ease pain and symptoms. It is believed that Acupuncture stimulates muscles and releases the body’s natural pain killers called endorphins. Acupuncture may also block the neurotransmitters and therefore block pain messages from being delivered to the brain.

Does acupuncture work for migraines

Like many migraine treatments, Acupuncture has provided relief for some migraine sufferers, however everyone will not have the same results.

Possible side effects of acupuncture

Always make sure you receive Acupuncture treatment from a licensed, qualified practitioner.

  • Soreness, bleeding or bruising at needle sites
  • Injury to internal organs if needles are pushed in too deeply
  • If needles are reused there is risk of infections or communicable diseases
  • Feeling of heaviness
  • Numbness or tingling

Who should not participate in Acupuncture for migraines

People with certain diseases and conditions should not seek Acupuncture for migraines. Do not receive Acupuncture treatment if you have:

  • A pacemaker – some types of Acupuncture uses mild electrical pulses in the needles, which can interfere with the pacemaker
  • Bleeding or blood-related disorders

Acupuncture has stimulated premature labor in some pregnant women.

As always, the best source for advice on treating your migraines is your own migraine specialist. These descriptions of natural remedies are provided only for informational purposes. You should begin no medication or supplement without first checking with your physician. Again, this information should in no way substitute or be mistaken for medical advice.