Head pain, whether in the form of a headache or a full blown migraine can affect just about everyone. Because there are different types of migraines, I won’t go into all the different types and what they individually look like. But although they are still unclear as to what causes migraines, the good news is that if you have noticed a change in frequency in your migraines, there could be a few things to consider regarding what the culprit could be.
If you are female and perimenopausal, this could be your golden egg. Estrogen, along with other female hormones start to go into flux at this time. These hormonal changes could be causing your migraine pain. There are a few clues that this is the reason for your pain. One is your age. The other is that your migraines seem to be cyclical, happening at certain times of the “month”. If you suspect this is the reason, the answer could be as simple as getting your hormones checked. Once checked, any imbalances can be rectified and your migraines could be a thing of the past.
2. Food / Drink / Caffeine
Let’s face it. We change our chemistry every day with what we eat and drink. It is the most powerful way for us to affect our own health. Do you notice after eating a certain food or food group (like grains or dairy) that you end up getting a migraine - even if it takes a day to come on? What about caffeine consumption? Do you suffer if you don’t drink it? Or maybe you suffer when you do? There are ways to whittle down a list of possible offending foods. It is a simple Food Sensitivity Test that can be found at most Naturopathic Doctor’s offices.
3. Changes in Weather
Believe it or not, our bodies are sensitive to the pressure in our atmosphere. Have you ever heard someone proclaim they knew a storm was coming by how their bones felt? Although they may not have known it, that was based on atmospheric pressure. That pressure can negatively affect migraine sufferers. Sensitivity to heat/cold can be causes of migraines too.
4. Stress & Anxiety
Stress and Anxiety can cause migraines, whether the head pain presents as more of a tension headache that moves into a migraine or not. When we continually worry, that creates more stress, which ends up feeding the problem. It can become a vicious cycle. Consider managing your stress better with appropriate exercise coupled with enough downtime to regenerate the way you need to feel more relaxed. Sometimes it means we just have to learn to delegate more.
5. Sometimes - it’s the medication you are already taking
That’s right! Please check the side effects of any pharmaceuticals you may be currently taking - even pain medications. There is something called the “rebound” effect. What that means is that the pill(s) you are taking could actually be inducing more of the symptoms you are taking it to get rid of. Now THAT sounds like a vicious cycle.
My best advice, if you have chronic conditions you are tired of experiencing, is to find a good alternative doctor (like a Naturopathic Doctor) that understands the correct testing you need to discover the real underlying reason for your discomfort - no matter what it is.
Wishing you abundant health,
Dr. Barbara Rush
So many times, we hear the phrase "Anti-Aging". Yet we know there is no way to truly stop the hands of time. But we still try. This blog will look a little deeper into some of the protocols used to "help" slow the hands of time naturally. Most of the subjects will be treatments that have been around and used for many years, while some may be on subjects that might seem a little edgy.
As a doctor, I like to investigate, dig, and explore options - options that have been given to us by Mother Nature. Some may think that anti-aging can only happen with things like Botox (which originates in Nature), dermal fillers and plastic surgery. This blog will not be about those treatment options. But rather it will talk about the things more and more people are looking for when it comes to being more empowered regarding their health, and ultimately their own longevity.
Some of the topics will be revealing what our chemistry truly needs to authentically age, and age well. Oh, and don't worry, it will be much deeper then just nutrition, which is important too.
Let me give you just a little nibble for now...
If you want the best trajectory into your future, consider your sleep. Everyone thinks that 8 hours is the best. But actually, because we are all different, that may not be the case for you. Sleep is critical so that our body can spend the time it needs to repair. When we don't get good sleep, enough sleep or any sleep at all, we are aging ourselves faster then we need to. Hey, they don't call it beauty sleep for nothing.
"So, how do I know what the best amount of sleep for me is?" you might ask. Well, here is one way to find out. If you can, allow yourself to go to bed at night when you are tired. Do not stay up later to get more done. Just go to bed. DO NOT set an alarm. That's right. You read that right. Do not set an alarm. Let yourself sleep until you wake naturally in the morning. How long did you sleep? Well for the first month or so, your "time" may be skewed because your body is adjusting. But after that first month or so, you will get a more accurate number. Now, when you first start doing this, you might be a little nervous with no alarm. But, trust me, you won't sleep away 3 days. You will wake the next day. And when you wake without that annoying alarm, you will feel much more calm when you start your day.
I've been doing this since I graduated from medical school. With everything we go through in med school, it took me a few months to get adjusted, but I'm glad I did. I have much less stress, get sick less often, and feel happier overall - all things that help to promote quality longevity.