Here at The Migraine & Neurological Rehabilitation Center, we specialize in assisting our patients through their migraine pain. We are proud to serve Provo, UT and the surrounding communities.
Unfortunately, many people suffer from migraines. Migraines are throbbing headaches that are often presaged by fuzzy eyesight, sensitivity to light and sound, and even vomiting. The causes of migraine headaches are complex and varied, but can be broken down into five main categories:
Studies indicate that migraine headaches often start in a part of the brain called the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus influences a myriad of functions in the body including hormones, appetite, energy, internal organs, etc… At the start of a migraine attack, nerve cells in the hypothalamus become hyperactive. This hyperactivity then spreads, effecting other parts of the brain. This causes many of the non-pain symptoms like sensitivity to light, sound and smells and nausea. This spreading causes the blood vessels in the brain to change size and makes some pain nerves become extra sensitive.
The extra sensitive pain nerves are in a part of the brain called the meninges (a wrapper just under the skull and surrounding the surface of the brain). These nerves all end up in the brain stem where they interact with nerves in the neck that cover the entire head and face. Research has shown that structural problems with upper neck can greatly effect the functioning of these nerves and play a pivotal role in migraines. This is often one of the most overlooked reasons that patients don’t get better from drug-based treatments alone. This area can be effectively treated with physical therapy and chiropractic care.
Evidence suggests that the majority of chronic migraine suffers have a problem with the way their body processes glucose (sugar or carbohydrates). This issue seems to stem from liver, the main organ responsible for regulating your blood sugar levels. signs of this include, getting a headache when you go without food more than a few hours and getting “Hangry.” Certain foods have also been implicated in causing migraines, though the exact reason is still being studied. A proper metabolic analysis will be performed to evaluate the extent to which these issues contribute to your migraines. If present, they must be dealt with if your migraine disorder is going to improve.
Hormonal imbalances have been shown to increase migraine attacks. Treating hormonal imbalance is not exact and can be tricky. There is no perfect test to determine exactly how to “rebalance” someones hormones. Many people are extremely nervous about artificially altering hormone levels as that can cause massive side effects and problems. Research tells us that its usually wisest to avoid giving hormones if at all possible and we follow that evidence.
Stress can certainly contribute to migraines. Though its not generally a primary cause, it can act like gasoline on an already existing fire, making it much worse. Its important to have good stress coping techniques. We can help you find some. Second, long term pain (like chronic migraines) actually causes changes in the way the brain is wired making it easier and easier to experience pain, despair, negativity, etc… Testing must be performed to evaluate different parts of the brain to find these “hot spots.” Once found, therapy can be performed to try and return the brain to normal state, closer to how it was before the years of chronic pain took their toll.
One of the main reasons that migraine sufferers don’t get better is because the problem has so many causes as listed above. Each cause only contributes a portion of the problem. In health care, we tend to be very specialized to just one of those areas and rarely are they all addressed. At The Migraine and Neurological Rehabilitation in Provo, UT, we have experts from all these fields to help with your case. Some of our physicians, like Dr. Kyle Bills in our Provo, UT office have more than one doctorate in multiple fields. This is why our success rate in treating migraines is so high. Currently, over 90% of chronic migraine sufferers seen in our Provo, UT office report life changing reductions in there migraine headaches.
We combine traditional medicine, chiropractic medicine, physical therapy, dietary and exercise prescriptions, neurological rehabilitation, mindfulness and others all in one clinic to help you finally find and answer to your migraines.
We are always here to answer your questions. No question is ever too silly for us. We want you to be healthy and will do whatever we can to assist you with this. The moment you enter our office, you will be greeted by our friendly staff. The entire time you are in our office, you will be in caring hands.
If you have any questions or suffer from migraines, contact us today at (385) 325-2370. We can set you up with a phone consult with Dr. Bills to discuss your case free of charge to see if we can help you live migraine free.