Berris Burgoyne - Naturopath

Berris Burgoyne - Naturopath Clinic - Moorooka - 0438 222 341

Article :: Herbal Treatment for Migraines – Clinical Trial

There have been several clinical trials that show the effectiveness of long-term use of Feverfew for management of migraines. These trials demonstrate that it can take several months to have a significant reduction in the frequency of migraines. However, the length of time taken to achieve results may be related to the dose used.
In a recent clinical trial researchers used much higher doses of Feverfew and combined it with Willow Bark. The trial went for 12 weeks in total and achieved the following results:

  • a 57% reduction in the frequency of migraines within a 6-week period and a 61.7% reduction after 12 weeks of the herbal therapy
  • a 38.7% reduction in migraine severity after 6 weeks and a 62.6% reduction after 12 weeks of treatment
  • a 27.2% reduction in migraine duration at 6 weeks and a 76.2% reduction after 12 week

These results are very interesting and suggest that the combination of the correct dose of Feverfew and Willow Bark is well worth trying for the treatment/management of recurrent migraines.

If you have tried Feverfew previously and found it ineffective this new treatment regime may give better results.


Triggers for Migraine

Stress - One of the triggers for migraine in many people is stress, although the migraine may not occur until after the stressful event. Stress can initiate a migraine (or other types of headaches) because of the tightening of muscles around the neck and shoulders. Finding ways of managing stress can be very beneficial. There are many herbal medicines that help the body to cope with stress much better and some are given specifically to prevent headaches and migraines associated with stress. My clinical experience has shown that these work very well as part of the management and treatment of migraines.

Menstrual Cycle – Many women will experience migraines at specific times during their menstrual cycle. Most commonly the migraines will occur in the premenstrual phase, however they can also occur at other times during the cycle. When headaches are associated with the menstrual cycle part of the treatment must include herbs that can correct hormonal irregularities and/or the woman’s sensitivity to changing hormone levels that occur naturally throughout the cycle.

Diet – Diet can definitely be a trigger for migraine in many sufferers. The offending foods vary greatly between individuals, however the most common foods associated with the onset of a migraine include cheese, chocolate, citrus fruits and alcohol, especially red wine.

Sluggish liver function – The liver is responsible for many functions in the body, however one of its major functions is the elimination of toxins. If there is reduced ability for the liver to perform this important task, toxins can build up and cause or contribute to the onset of migraine headaches.
Decreased liver function can also lead to food intolerances and sluggish bowel function, which further contributes to migraines.


Also see my article on Liver Health, Liver Detox

Other triggers include too little or too much sleep, tiredness/fatigue, bright lights, noise, excessive heat or exposure to chemicals.

How to Prevent Migraines

  • Avoid triggering factors as much as possible

  • Avoid becoming over-tired

  • Avoid the build up of stress. If you know you are coming up to a stressful time seek treatment that will greatly reduce the effects of the stress. If you are a regular client at my clinic give me a call and I can organise for you to pick up the appropriate medicines.

Or if you haven’t been to the clinic or if I haven’t seen you for some time you may need to make an appointment. It will be well worth it!

  • Make time to relax regularly. If you feel your back, neck and shoulder muscles tensing up it is time to relax! This will reduce the likelihood of a migraine developing.

  • Adopt stress management techniques that you enjoy. For example, have regular massage, Bowen or Reiki treatments and make more time for YOU on a regular basis.

  • Use preventative treatments such as Feverfew and Willow Bark as used in the recent clinical trial.

There is much that can be done

Migraine is a complex condition and the mechanisms involved are not fully understood, however there is much that can be done to prevent the occurrence of migraines or at the very least reduce their frequency and severity.

 

Article by Berris Burgoyne ©

Clinic Info

Berris Burgoyne - Naturopath and Herbalist
Berris Burgoyne

Health Blog


I am passionate about helping people improve their health and well-being.

I believe that the human spirit has the potent ability to bring about healing when it is given the necessary support to do so.

This support can be achieved in a number of ways including dietary and lifestyle adjustments and natural medicines.

These address any imbalances, and by adopting healthy habits and attitudes that nourish your spiritual, emotional and physical well-being you can achieve optimal health.


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