8 Ways to Prevent Headaches

8 Ways to Prevent Headaches

8 Ways to Prevent Headaches Without Drugs 

Wouldn’t it be great to avoid headaches rather than treat them with medication?  Lifestyle choices can prevent some headaches!  

1) Hydrate—When you take a walk on a hot day and don’t drink enough water, your whole body gets depleted.  Even the chemical soup that holds your brain shrinks, pulling on the balloon-like structure that holds it, causing a headache.  Be diligent about drinking water, both in the warm and cold months.

2) Gain Nutritional Awareness—It’s best to consume all things in moderation.  If you’re consuming a lot of processed foods that are full of preservatives and chemicals and high in sodium fat, and sugar, you are not feeding your body as much as you are feeding an appetite. Eat whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and plants. These things will help nourish your body and actually make it much easier for your body to process nutrients that it needs from your diet.

3) Get Quality Sleep—Many patients who deal with chronic pain also deal with sleep issues.  A small dose of melatonin (3 milligrams) may help reset your circadian rhythm.  If that doesn’t help in a week or two, reach out to the Wellward team.  We’ll help get to the bottom of the sleep issue with the tools in our practice, some of which include sleep studies, therapeutic counseling, sleep hygiene, and ketamine infusion therapy.

4) Manage Your Stress—We often don’t even realize when we’re stressed out.  Our shoulders come up toward our ears, and we tense our neck muscles. If that movement is repeated, headaches can form. Wellward offers numerous personalized treatments to help you ease your stress—these include acupuncture, medical massage, and reiki. Our skilled clinicians will work one-on-one with you to develop a tailored plan to minimize stress and headaches.

5) Control Fibromyalgia Fibromyalgia is a widespread and largely misunderstood condition. A major component of fibromyalgia is sustained neuroinflammation, which increases pain and can lead to headaches.  In addition to mental health awareness and acupuncture, Wellward has recently begun using MLS laser therapy to increase circulation and mobilize some of the toxins build up in muscles, creating a chronic state of tension. This treatment  still in the early stages, but we’re seeing good outcomes with MLS laser therapy and fibromyalgia.

6) Resolve Head and Neck Injuries People who have migraines oftentimes deal with neck issues.  Once we can help our patients improve their range of motion and increase their strength, they have less intense and less frequent migraines. They also need less medication.  Check out our 50 Shades of Pain episode Why Do I Have a Headache?  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJwfA3BoAd4&t=21s)

7) Exercise Getting rid of nervous energy by moving and exercising can help to minimize headaches. Not only does exercise help with maintaining appropriate muscle tone, but it soothes the stress of the day.  Studies have shown that intensive and consistent exercise can work just as well for some populations as antidepressant drugs. That’s yet another reason to get out there and move, especially on a sunny day!

8) Consider Suboccipital Nerve Blocks —  For numerous reasons, the nerves in the back of the head can develop problems.  Sometimes they are compressed from tight muscles in the back of the head, other times they are injured from trauma such as whiplash during a car accident.  These irritations and injuries to the nerve can set off a cascade of events that can lead to a migraine headache.   An easy and fast injection directed to these nerves can bring immediate relief to headaches and prevent a full migraine from occurring.

 

The Wellward Team is well-versed in headache prevention and treatment.  Please call us at 859-275-4878 us to ask any questions or to set up an appointment with our headache expert Dawn Jones.  The Wellward team looks forward to speaking with you and to helping you on your journey to healing and better health.  

Keywords:  headache, headache prevention, hydration, acupuncture, ketamine, fibromyalgia, nutrition, diet, exercise