Today I want to start a series within my yoga website which will address various common health issues, for example Yoga and Migraine, Yoga and Back Pain, Yoga and Fitness, Yoga and Weight Loss, Yoga and Getting Older, Yoga and Mental Health.
I will show you how regular yoga exercises can help overcome or improve all kind of physical and mental problems.
Migraines can be triggered by many factors, such as certain foods, lack of sleep, or dehydration. You may have noticed that stress may be a trigger for your migraines too. So activities that lower your stress levels may be helpful for your migraines.
Migraine is the third most common disease in the world and is estimated to affect 15 % of the world population. Three times more women than men are affected by migraine and it is probably due to different hormones in men and women. More than 75 % of people affected experience at least one attach every month. Most people suffering from migraines are between 35 and 45 years old, but it can happen to everybody, even children.
Medications to treat migraine
There is a huge range of medications available to treat migraine. I would advise to get some background information to help you chose the drug best for you. As there is no standard treatment for migraine, you will have to chose your medication on an individual basis. Whilst you may need drugs during an attach, it might be worth finding out what causes the attacks.
How medication works
Most drugs act in one of the following ways:
- replacing substances in the body which you lack
- destroying organisms such as bacteria which have invaded the body
- changing the way cells function.
The drugs used in migraine mostly fall into the last category.
Alternative methods to tackle migraine
Be careful in choosing your diet, many foods and beverages trigger a migraine attack, as for example:
- foods with nitrates including cold cuts, bacon and sausage
- red wine
- iced food or drinks
- all processed foods
- pickled foods
A small amount of caffeine may help some people. Caffeine is also in some migraine medications.
Inhaling lavender essential oil.
Acupressure – pressure with fingers and hands to specific points on the body.
Peppermint oil applied to the forehead.
Ginger, either fresh or as powder.
Yoga and Migraine
These poses will show you how to lessen the impacts of migraines and headaches.
There a several poses which can reduce stress and tension which often is the reason for getting migraines. These poses boost blood flow and circulation to your brain and can help getting rid of throbbing pain in your head.
I would recommend 4 poses for yoga and migraine.
This pose has a very calming effect and can reduce pain.
Kneel on your mat, toes together, spread your knees. Get your buttocks onto your heels. Exhale and put your head on the floor, arms extended, straight, palms facing down. Hold for one to two minutes and try to loosen your neck and shoulders.
This pose opens the chest, heart and shoulders, can reduce anxiety and tension in the upper body.
Lie on your back with bent knees and feet firmly flat on the mat or floor. Extend your arms, palms flat on the floor. Lift your pelvic and let your torso follow. Shoulders and head on the floor. Leave thighs and feet parallel with your weight evenly distributed. Hold for one minute and slowly drop back to the floor, then rise into an upright position.
Downward facing dog
This pose is very good for circulation to the brain.
Get on your hands and knees with wrists under your shoulders and knees under your hips. Stretch your elbows, spread out your fingers and press down with your weight evenly distributed between your hands. Then lift your knees off the floor and straighten your legs, lift your pelvis and try to lengthen your spine. Hold for one to two minutes. Come out by getting back to hands and knees and then come up.
This pose will bring your body to a complete rest.
Lie on your back and keep your legs slightly apart, your arms to the side with palms facing upwards. Stay in this position for as long as you want, most people like doing it for 15 to 20 minutes. At the beginning, make all your body and muscles very tense and then release. Take a couple of deep breaths, then relax actively your whole body from your head to your toes. If you come out of this pose, roll to your right side and then come slowly up.
Some people with migraine even report that working out or engaging in a low-impact activity like yoga at the start of an attack can help slow the symptoms and make recovery easier.
Even if yoga is tricky at first, stick with it. It’s a win-win for your brain, health, and overall quality of life.
Before taking regularly any medicine I really recommend to try an alternative method and yoga can be practiced at home and whenever you want. You just need a quiet room and your yoga mat and you can start your journey to recovery and you will also feel many other benefits if you keep on practicing.
START NOW AND LET YOGA HELP YOU TO FEEL BETTER!
Please let me have your comments and questions below – I am more than happy to reply!