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Natural Remedies

Magnesium

  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    CORVID – Thank you for sharing that! Many Migraineurs are deficient in Magnesium. Maybe that was one of your main triggers. Congratulations on finding a wonderful and easy answer for yourself!

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    • By VTLauren

      Has anyone read the book or articles by Dr. Russell Blaylock. Sounds like similiar diet suggestions in Healing Headaches (can’t think of author) but the elimination diet. What I wanted to know is if he’s right about using a specific brand of Magnesium. I think it’s Jigsaw Health Magnesium w/SRT. I guess it’s gradual release in your system. I also read something about powder form to use during an attack.

      Anyone try these products and does the brand of Magnesium make a difference in it’s success in preventing migraine? I’m very interested. Thanks!

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    illinois247 – It always strikes me as strange that this thread isn’t populated by several pages! Magnesium is easy to take, effective for many people in oral form, and for a huge number of people when given as an IV during a Migraine attack. Thanks for sharing that it was helpful to you. Maybe when we get more of these types of stories, Magnesium won’t be so easy to dismiss any longer…

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  • By Gina

    How long does it take to start working and how much should I take? I have had 5 migraines in the past 10 days. My doctor’s appt isn’t for 4 weeks. Imitrex isn’t helping. I am having trouble working and taking care of my children. Thanks in advance for any info you can give me! 🙂

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    ginaflack – Response really varies from person to person. It can be a day or two, or a month or two. One great thing about Magnesium though, is that it is very unlikely to be harmful to you, especially if you are deficient in Magnesium. If you have trouble taking it orally, you can try taking a smaller dosage and utilizing epsom salts baths frequently. Epsom salts are magnesium salts that are easily absorbed through the skin. By bypassing the gut, it is much less likely you will have digestive upset as a side effect.

    Hang in there… I hope your doctor will be able to offer you some other options that will be helpful to you.

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  • By Melissa

    I take a magnesium supplement as well as using a topical magnesium oil. I’m not sure the oil has done much for my migraines but it does make me sleep better which in turn can help the migraines. Since starting magnesium my headaches seem to be less painful but it has not made the frequency end for me. I also take b-complex and b-2 supplements which migrainers are know to be deficient in.

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    melissaatooker – I’m glad you’re using the oil too. Not many people know that even exists. It is often used for therapeutic massage.

    One quick thing though, which is important to know – Migraineurs are not necessarily known to be deficient in B vitamins, and in fact taking them without keeping an eye on levels can create more problems than they might potentially solve. If you are deficient (which can easily be determined with testing) they might be helpful, but overdosing on specific B’s can be toxic. There are also side effects, such as increased light sensitivity that can occur with B2 supplementation. That said, B2 does have some research behind it that backs its use as a preventive. Just because it is a vitamin however, doesn’t mean it is automatically safe.

    Have you had your vitamin levels tested recently?

    I am currently doing weekly infusions of magnesium, B vitamins and others which we’d hoped would be helpful for my Migraines as well as my autoimmune issues. (I have been tested and do have malabsorption and resultant deficiencies) Unfortunately, it tends to trigger them. Migraine brains don’t like change and it seems this is just too much change for my brain to deal with at once. Usually mag is my go-to if I get an intractable or refractory attack. Right now, it’s not working for me. In fact, the infusions have been causing palps and some other issues that we’re hoping will go away as we go to bi-weekly infusions.

    I hope to get more info on this from my headache specialist.

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  • By Shinetrue

    I agree with your statement above- I am so lucky that I stumbled upon people talking about magnesium on another site. In january 2012, I noticed increased light sensitivity and my migraines became unpredictable (used to be once every 3 months). A few months after I seemed to stabilize (off birth control), I started experincing Tinittus constantly and migraines evry 3-4 days. After trying a few different types and reading “the magnesium solution for migraine headaches” (ebook) I found my answer. I do take B2 also and notice my energy levels drop if I do not take it. My cousin started taking magnesium for her Raynaud’s and it has helped her too. I have classic migraines w/ aura and dont see why doctor’s are not aware of the benefits of magnesium. It was a lifesaver for me.

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    Shinetrue – Magnesium has many benefits, but like any other nutrient we put into our bodies, we need to be careful that we are balancing them all. Overdoing any one nutrient can set others off, and eventually we end up in trouble. This is why having a great, not just good diet is so important. Many of us don’t absorb our minerals and nutrients particularly well due to Migraine related gastric issues. This is one reason I agree with you – I wish more doctors understood the benefits of mag for Migraine. Maybe they would use it more frequently instead of labeling desperate Migraineurs as drug seekers. *sigh*

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  • By DElaine85

    Magnesium helped me a bit, but I haven’t had a migraine in weeks since I started taking electrolyte supplements a couple times a day.

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    DElaine85

    For some, electrolytes can be helpful, however there are two things to consider. #1 most electrolyte supplements contain MSG and can in fact be triggers for some people. #2 using these supplements too often can overdo some electrolytes. Since many of these electrolytes help to control how our brains and nervous system work, this can eventually be a bad thing.

    I’m super glad it seems to be working for you, but hopefully this additional information might help you in the future too 🙂

    ~Ellen

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  • By DElaine85

    I would certainly hope that a person would be careful with anything they ingest considering that even water can potentially kill you if you drink a couple times the healthy amount of it…

    As far as the MSG; I am curious if this would be a listed ingredient when present? Because if so, there is none in the one’s I am taking (Trace Minerals Research).

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  • By DElaine85

    In fact, part of the reason I decided to give this a go was because I noticed that some of the biggest migraine triggers are related to hydration; MSG (a sodium) and Nitrates (often present in high protein foods which require large amounts of water for the body to process).

    Also, many of the supplements that tend to help migraine pain often work by regulating blood vessel tension in the brain which is s technique, studies have found, that the body seems to use to attempt to regulate body fluid levels.

    Whatever the case, it seems to working for me!

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  • By Ellen Schnakenberg

    DElaine85

    MSG is considered “natural” and as such there is almost no labeling rules for it. I wrote a couple posts that might help you find out if this is an issue for you.

    It boils down to this I think: in your case, sports drinks seem to be helpful to you, whatever the reason. Sometimes we just don’t understand why. It could even be as simple as you’re staying hydrated, which can be a really important Migraine trigger all by itself! My comment was really made more for the thousands of other patients who will read your post and in desperation, give sports drinks a try without knowing what all triggers they might actually be exposing themselves to.

    Here are those MSG info posts I encourage anyone with Migraine to read, research and try diligently to understand and make automatic before putting anything into or onto their bodies. (yep, MSG is also in cosmetics, shampoo etc.)

    Migraine Triggers: How Do I Locate Hidden MSG Migraine Triggers? https://migraine.com/blog/locate-hidden-msg-migraine-triggers/

    Migraine Triggers: MSG — Untangling this Hidden Migraine Trigger
    https://migraine.com/blog/msg-untangling-this-hidden-migraine-trigger/

    Someday, my dream is that the Migraine community has two things:

    #1 An elimination of MSG in foods without clear and consistent warnings on labels, and NO HIDING.

    #2 A list of common foods that are free of high glutamate levels (the only way you will really know if you’re eating something that may trigger you), and a list of those that knowingly or unknowingly include these problem checmicals.

    ~Ellen

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  • By rpigg

    I am trying Magnesium cream to rub on my shoulders, neck, spine legs, feet, anywhere. A family member has cancer and got the cream from a cancer center in Arizona for extreme leg & feet cramps. It does help relax the muscles and with the migraine pain that is at the base of the skull. I have been diagnosed with chronic migraine. There is not a day I do not have some form of it.

    My muscles are constantly tense in my whole body all the time. When I realize I am squeezing the muscles I tell myself to relax just to find I am doing it again. The only time I am completely relaxed is in meditation, and I can’t do that all the time.

    My family member was told by the cancer center that you cannot take enough magnesium orally to do what the cream does. It can be compounded/made by any pharmacy if you can find one that will still do it. I am not sure if you need a prescription for it or not. The ingredients are “magnesium chloride 30% cream”.

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    • By Katie M. Golden Moderator

      Rpigg,
      Thanks for sharing, i’ve never heard of the magnesium cream before, but have used it orally for a long time. I’m going to look into it.

      Like you, my neck and shoulders are always tense which contribute to my pain. Have you tried physical therapy? I also used a TENS unit to stimulate the muscles to get relief. Massages are great, but can get expensive. So I’m definitely going to ask my doc about this.
      Thanks!
      -Katie

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  • By Anthony

    Electrolyte supplements? I’ve never heard of this being used for migraine. I have chronic daily migraine and I’m willing to try anything! Where can I get this and what type should I be looking for? Thanks.

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  • By Tammy Rome

    I use ElectroMix. It’s made by the same company that makes Emergen-C, but it’s not readily available. You’ll probably have to purchase it over the internet. It’s a lemon-lime powdered mix that you can add to water.

    I also use SmartWater because it has electrolytes added to it.

    Sports drinks just have too much sugar and salt for me to tolerate, but they do work in a pinch.

    Tammy

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  • By Tammy Rome

    I use it as part of my overall healthy lifestyle, especially when it is hot and I’m going to be outside. It’s more of a “trigger avoidance” strategy by preventing my electrolytes from getting out of balance when I am in situations that put me at risk. I suppose you could use it daily if you are really sensitive to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances. I would certainly use it daily if I were an athlete or worked an active or outdoor job.

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  • By Blaine

    For the last ~5 years I have been taking 400mg magnesium (from Costco) every evening and 100mg vitamin B2 (originally daily, the twice daily). This hasn’t really decreased the frequency of my migraines, but it has significantly decreased the severity.

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  • By icorvidae

    Look into Magnesium Threonate. It’s a “new” formulation of magnesium that is highly absorbable. I bought the Life Extensions brand ($24/mo supply/Amazon.com). I also supplement with B-2 (400mg) and Ubiquinol (200mg) daily. 🙂

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  • By kyle

    my wife gets migraines atleast once a day. she has been to doctors and she is on furocet and her doc says she can go on imitrex. she doesn’t want to take pills everyday anymore. any suggestions on what she can try to do. she wont try lavender oil cuz it makes her feel sick.

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  • By Katie M. Golden Moderator

    53rx6k,
    Your wife is lucky to have a partner who is so invested in her health!
    I can understand not wanting to be on a lot of medications, however if she’s having a Migraine a day, she needs more aggressive treatment so that she can regain her quality of life.

    Fioricet can become slightly addictive and higher doses will be needed to mask the pain. Also taking too much of it, can cause rebound headaches. As long as she’s aware of that, there are ways she can use it and avoid these pitfalls.

    Imitrex is typically the first drug a doc goes to for a new migraine patient. If she doesn’t want to do that, there are a number of other ways to try to manage her Migraines. Here is a great resource on natural options: https://migraine.com/migraine-treatment/natural-remedies/

    Also, since her Migraines are so bad and so frequent I hope she is seeing a neurologist and not a general practicioner. The best type of doctor for her to see is a headache specialist. These are neuros that only deal with Migraines. Here’s info on that: https://migraine.com/blog/how-are-migraine-specialists-different/

    Best Wishes,
    -Katie
    Migraine.com Moderator

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  • By kyle

    thanks for your reply. she has seen a neurologist a ways back and they didn’t see anything but we need to go back.

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