Chronic headaches or migraines can make it a challenge to get through basic, everyday tasks. Often, these headaches or migraines can be indicative of an underlying condition or issue, while other times there is no clear reason. It is important to discuss all of your symptoms and experiences with Dr. DeCaria to determine the best course of action for your specific pain.
Treatment will always vary by person. Dr. DeCaria has effectively treated headaches from many different conditions through her unique approach that utilizes conventional medicine, as well as integrative and functional medicine. The goal of treatment is to reduce the overall frequency of the headaches and to manage any attacks that may occasionally occur. Common treatment plans include:
1. Lifestyle Adjustments:
For some patients, simple lifestyle changes may need to be made to alleviate the pain. This can vary from improving your sleep, making dietary changes, managing medications, and avoiding known triggers. In addition, some vitamins or supplements could be added to your diet, such as magnesium. Keeping a pain journal is very helpful for you and your physician. You may notice patterns in when you have pain, symptoms and triggers of an oncoming episode, and more.
2. Therapeutic Strategies:
These strategies are also known as “natural remedies” since pain isn’t necessarily only treated with medication or procedures. Some treatments that could help manage your headaches or migraines include resting in a cold, quiet room with minimal lighting, applying a cold or hot compress to the forehead or back of neck, massages to the scalp or temples, and relaxation techniques such as meditation or yoga. In conjunction with other treatments, these strategies could significantly alleviate your pain.
Botox can be used to treat chronic migraine headaches by injecting prescription medication into the muscle at various points along the forehead, neck, shoulders, and back of the head. By blocking nerve impulses to the muscles, Botox causes muscles to relax which reduces migraine pain. Effects of Botox can last around 3 months and the procedure is typically repeated every 3 months. Risks are rare but include swelling, dropping eyelid, bruising, or pain at the injection site. Dr. DeCaria commonly performs Botox injections for migraine headaches.
4. Preventative Medication:
These are used to reduce the frequency and/or the severity of migraine headaches. They are typically taken on a regular schedule, as opposed to as needed or during a pain episode. While taking preventative medications, it is important to be cautious and in communication with your provider as overuse of these medications can lead to a dependency problem, and could indicate that prescription medication may be needed.
5. Pain-Relieving Medication:
Also known as ‘abortive treatment,’ these medications are taken in the midst of a migraine attack in order to stop symptoms. As opposed to preventive medications, these types of medications are most effective when taken once you experience any symptoms of an oncoming migraine. It is best to take the medication when the pain is mild; by doing so, the medications help decrease or even eliminate any migraine symptoms such as nausea or sensitivity.
In order to deliver the best pain relief, Dr. DeCaria will discuss your pain history and experiences with you in order to determine the best course of treatment for your pain. Schedule your appointment with Revitalize Medical Center today to regain control over your pain!
This website (including all pages and blog posts) is not intended to replace the services of a physician, nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Information is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating a medical or health condition. To schedule an appointment at Revitalize Medical Center, please call (847) 834-4018.