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Complementary Alternatives Therapies

Physical Therapy

  • By k_nelson

    I came on to this forum to see what your guy’s experience has been with physical therapy. I started it yesterday, because I have a really bad neck (they say that some of the muscles in my neck don’t even work), and they seem like it is really hopeful. Is that what they tell everyone? I have had chronic migraines for the past 3 years, and have tried just about everything. I am not really wanting to stay on my meds long term, since I am very young:)…so I turned to physical therapy to hopefully find some relief.

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  • By Nancy Harris Bonk Moderator

    Hi Keziah,

    Welcome to the discussion forum and thank you for your question! We’re so glad you are here.

    Physical therapy can be a good addition to a traditional migraine management plan. I’ve tried PT for migraine, both aqua physical therapy and land physical therapy, with mixed results. While it didn’t rid me of all my pain, it did help strengthen muscles in my neck that needed strengthening. Here is a piece a wrote a few years ago about my experience; https://migraine.com/blog/migraine-treatment-experiences-physical-therapy/ and you can read about another experience here; https://migraine.com/blog/migraine-and-physical-therapy-stepping-off-the-edge/.

    Taking migraine medications may not be required for the rest of your life, research has shown that the quicker we can get episodic (occasional) migraine under control, the less likely we will become chronic. Having said that, it may feel like you’ve tried everything out there for migraine, but that probably isn’t true. There are over 100 medications that can be used to treat migraine and if we add up all the combinations that number goes up dramatically. It would take over 25 years to try each medication in the correct manner and at the proper dose. Also, when we start new medications, it can take up to 90 days before we see a reduction in our migraine frequency and severity. During this time potential side effects may lessen. Let me share with you our information on migraine prevention medications; https://migraine.com/blog/migraine-management-essential-4-preventive-treatment/.

    By any chance are you taking migraine medications and/or pain relievers, whether they are over-the-counter or prescription more than two to three days a week? If so, we can unknowingly create another problem called medication overuse headache or moh, which was formerly called rebound. If we have moh our attacks will be more difficult to treat and we can end up in a daily cycle of pain that is hard to break. Take a look at this information when you get a chance; https://migraine.com/blog/help-how-can-i-not-overuse-migraine-medications/.

    I hope this helps!
    Nancy

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  • By k_nelson

    Thanks Nancy!
    My other question is, how often does pt make migraines worst? Since I wrote my first question I have had more migraines and my normal chronic headache has been more intense. Does this usually go away?

    So my doctor has prescribed me to take meds every night for my migraines…and when I go off them my migraines are worst. So could my headaches be rebound if the meds are helping? I do get what rebound is though, because I used to take countless ibuprofen in a day (my doctor would tell me), and it was the worst when I tried to get off of it, so then I knew I had gotten into the rebound headache mess.

    Thanks for the help.

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