Migraine attacks are pretty prevalent in the country. That’s why it’s not surprising that plenty of patients visit our practice for migraine relief in Cedar Park. Notably, many aren’t aware of triggers that worsen their attacks, like excessive alcohol intake. In our discussion for this week, we will tackle the connection between migraine attacks and alcohol and why many healthcare professionals, like our Upper Cervical chiropractor, warn against excessive intake.
Alcohol and Migraines: A Bad Combination
Alcohol drinking often spells bad news for people who experience migraine headaches. That’s because alcohol acts as a diuretic – a substance that stimulates frequent urination. Unfortunately, excessive urination can lead to dehydration – a common migraine risk factor leading to worse pain.
Studies explain that too much alcohol in the system can lead to two types of headaches. The first one occurs within the first three hours you drank alcoholic beverages. On the other hand, the second headache occurs several hours after your blood alcohol returns to normal. Some people experience both types of alcohol-related headaches, while others only experience one of them.
It’s also worth noting that people respond to alcoholic beverages differently. For example, some experience worse migraines after drinking a glass or two of red wine, while others react adversely to beer. Here’s a closer look:
Red Wine and Migraines
A 2018 study found that 78 percent of alcohol-induced migraine attacks mainly stem from red wine intake. Unfortunately, researchers have not determined how red wine prevents painful migraine attacks. Some believe it has something to do with the histamine found in the skin of red grapes.
Unfortunately, about 1 percent of the population has histamine intolerance, causing increased histamine absorption in the bloodstream. Histamine can stimulate blood vessel dilation, triggering mild to severe migraine headaches.
Some studies point to tannins – a phytochemical in grapes that give wine a distinct taste – as the reason red wine sets off migraines. Interestingly, tannins cause the serotonin levels to spike, effectively triggering an attack.
Beer and Migraines
According to 2021 statistics, the beer industry in the US amounted to $94.1 billion. Millions of Americans drink beer on various occasions like football watch parties, tailgate parties, weekend barbecues, and even casual Netflix sessions. Unfortunately, a small fraction of Americans is sensitive to beer, causing allergic reactions that eventually snowball into a migraine attack.
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How to Cope with Alcohol-Related Migraines
Managing your drinking habits is ultimately the best way to curb your attacks. So, we strongly suggest limiting your consumption to one glass of wine or beer now and then. Alternatively, you can try listening to your body and adjusting your alcohol consumption depending on how your body responds to your body. You can also explore well-established sources of migraine relief in Cedar Park, such as the following:
Pain relievers like triptan can help dampen the effects of severe migraines. So, we suggest consulting with your physician and asking for a prescription. Triptans work best if you take them right after you notice the first signs of a migraine attack. You also need to know the exact dose to avoid unnecessary side effects.
Besides avoiding or limiting alcohol consumption and taking medications, you should consider making a few lifestyle adjustments. Doing so will help you maintain excellent health and keep your migraine symptoms at bay. Here are some things you can try to incorporate into your routine:
Keep track of other migraine triggers
Besides alcohol, other things can set off your symptoms, such as stress, bright lights, and loud sounds. So it would help to use a migraine journal to learn as much as you can about your episodes.
Include exercise in your weekly self-care plan
Stretching your muscles and building your endurance can help you maintain healthy blood flow and release muscle tension around the shoulders and neck. It can also help you experience less severe migraines.
Destress and unplug from work
Relaxing your mind and body can lower your cortisol levels. Consequently, this can help you avoid nasty and unexpected headaches, nausea, vomiting, and other signs of a migraine attack.
Upper Cervical Chiropractic
When the neckbones don’t follow neutral alignment, they can compress two tissues widely associated with severe migraines:
- Brainstem – This central nervous tissue transmits a message to and from the brain and your sensory organs. An irritated or compressed brainstem fails to perform routine functions, including heart rate regulation and sleep pattern management. Unfortunately, it can also contribute to worse migraine pain.
- Trigeminal nerve – This nerve bundle supplies sensation to the face, mouth, and head. When compressed or irritated, it can potentially aggravate headaches.
Thankfully, with the help of an Upper Cervical doctor, you can potentially remove the pressure on these two tissues. You can also help ease the mechanical strain on affected blood vessels, helping your nervous system recuperate and function smoothly again.
Upper Cervical Care applies to various cases of migraineurs, even those that have been recurring for several months or years. So, we strongly recommend exploring this option to begin enjoying migraine relief in Cedar Park.
Get our Help for Lasting Migraine Relief in Cedar Park
Whether your symptoms worsen because of alcohol intake, stress, or a postural imbalance in your cervical spine, one of our doctors would be happy to lend you a hand. As a chiropractic office with over a decade of experience handling cervical subluxation cases, we provide customized and gentle care to patients.
If your migraine episodes don’t seem to improve after seeking other sources of migraine relief in Cedar Park, we encourage you to try Upper Cervical Chiropractic. This decades-old technique aims to address imbalances in the neck that contribute to the onset of chronic health concerns like migraines. Find out if you are an excellent candidate for neck bone adjustments by getting in touch with our Symmetry Health Chiropractic Center team. Please call us at 512-572-3976 to book an appointment. You can also send us your questions about how we provide migraine relief to our patients via our online contact form.
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If you are outside of the local area you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.