Migraine is a neurological condition. The hallmark symptom of migraine is an intense headache, often described as pounding or throbbing. It’s usually accompanied by other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, or sensitivity to light or sound.
While there’s no cure for migraine, there are various treatments to address its symptoms and side effects, including medication or lifestyle changes.
Multiple clinical studies have found chiropractic care to be effective for
While some studies have found chiropractic treatment to be helpful for
Risks and side effects are possible with any treatment, including chiropractic care. It can be hard to get accurate data of adverse effects of manual therapy. This is because, unlike trials with drugs, manual therapy clinical trials do not always report adverse effects.
- increased pain or discomfort in the muscles, bones, tendons, or ligaments
- tingling or numbness in upper limbs
These effects typically went away on their own within 24 hours.
More serious adverse effects were also reported in both children and adults. They were rare. Estimates of serious adverse effects
- spinal cord injury after cervical, thoracic, or lumbar manipulation
- cauda equina syndrome
- collapsed lung
- worsening of lumbar disc herniations
Before seeing a chiropractor, ask your doctor or migraine specialist whether it’s safe for you to visit a chiropractor. They can also let you know about risks for your personal situation.
Children can and do get migraine. While the treatments are similar, many parents may be hesitant to give medication to their children. Some children have side effects from medications. Many migraine medications are made with adults in mind.
Children do get chiropractic care for various ailments. In 2010, the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners found that about 17 percent of people getting chiropractic care were younger than 18. However, the evidence that exists is
The American Chiropractic Association found evidence of adverse effects from chiropractic treatments in children, but said they were minimal.
Speak with your child’s pediatrician about whether they recommend chiropractic care for migraine. If you do seek chiropractic care, find someone with experience working with children.
Cervicogenic headaches can look a lot like migraine. The main difference is that while migraine starts in the brain, this kind of headache stems from the neck or the base of the skull.
Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. Many people with this kind of headache have occurrences about once or twice a month, although some people have them more often. Common therapeutic approaches used by chiropractors
- headache trigger advice
- spinal manipulation
- soft tissue therapy
- stress management guidance
If your headaches start to interfere with everyday life, see a doctor. It may help to keep a headache log, noting where the pain is and when it occurs. Let the doctor know where you have pain, or if you get more than one long lasting headache a month.
Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room if you or someone you know has a headache that includes these symptoms:
- slurred speech or drooping of one side of the face
- new weakness in the arm or leg
- an aura in which symptoms last more than an hour
- loss of consciousness
- sudden and intense onset
Sometimes, symptoms of a stroke can seem like a migraine headache.
While chiropractic care may be considered a complementary or alternative treatment for migraine, some people do find relief from it.
More research is needed to definitively recommend it as a first-line treatment. If you are interested in trying it, speak with a doctor to see if it’s safe for you.