A Look at Botox as a Therapeutic Treatment to Effectively Reduce the Frequency and Severity of Chronic Migraines
When most people hear Botox, they probably think of the cosmetic treatment to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. But Botox actually has significant health benefits too, such as reducing the frequency and pain of chronic migraines.
Like with many other medical treatments today, doctors discovered Botox use for migraine relief by accident. Patients receiving Botox for cosmetic and other medical treatments reported having fewer headaches and migraines. After further research, Botox became a common treatment option for chronic migraine sufferers.
If you suffer from chronic migraines, consider Botox treatments to help reduce pain and improve your quality of life. An Ottawa Botox clinic can help treat your migraines. Here’s how.
How Botox Works
Botox is a neurotoxic protein, known as a Botulinum toxin, which blocks chemical signals and nerve activity in muscles. This nerve activity causes muscles to contract, so when a doctor injects Botox into a muscle, the Botox reduces the nerve activity, weakening a muscle for up to four months, and preventing muscle contractions.
Facial muscle contractions are responsible for causing wrinkles and also contribute to the development of migraines. So by relaxing these muscles with Botox injections, you can get relief from both unwanted signs of aging and severe, life-changing pain.
Therapeutic Botox Treatments
Aside from treating wrinkles and migraines, Botox has been used to treat a variety of conditions for years, including:
- Blepharospasm—muscle spasms and eye twitching;
- Bruxism—teeth grinding;
- Cervical dystonia—severe painful neck muscle spasms;
- Excessive underarm sweating;
- Eye alignment—correcting crossed eyes; and,
- Overactive bladder.
Botox For Migraines
Since we have many muscles on our face and neck that could contribute to migraines, there are around 30 injection sites for Botox therapeutic migraine treatment. While this may sound unpleasant, the small prick of a needle is quick and much less painful than a migraine. You may have to experience short, minimal discomfort for maximum relief over time.
Your doctor should inform you of the injection sites that will be used migraine treatment. The injections should only take 15 minutes. If it’s your first time using Botox for migraine treatments, be prepared to experience some pain. While this isn’t always the case, it’s better to be prepared and have migraine-relief medication with you. Other possible responses may be nausea, fatigue, and muscle aches.
Botox treatment for migraines might take two or three rounds of injections before experiencing optimal relief. Although it may take some time to experience the therapeutic effects of the Botox—sometimes up to nine months—some patients experience migraine relief after the first treatment, usually in one to four months. Upon approval from your doctor, you should still be able to use migraine-relief medication in the meantime since Botox will not interfere with these drugs.
For those who have successful treatments, they will experience a significant decrease in the frequency and duration of migraines each month, and a reduction in the severity of pain. While it may not completely eliminate your migraines, the relief will help improve the quality of life for migraine sufferers.
The average results after 24 weeks and two Botox treatments are a reduction of seven to nine less migraine days per month. Botox is successful for treating chronic migraines, which occur more than 14 days per month.
When You Should Consider Botox for Migraines
If traditional migraine treatments and medications haven’t provided you enough relief from migraines, consider the possible relief you can get from Botox. The following are some common reasons for considering Botox as a sensible treatment option:
- You’re not afraid of needles;
- You don’t always remember to take your migraine medication;
- Your current migraine medication has severe side effects;
- You experience medication overuse headaches; or,
- Your current migraine treatment is not working.
While getting injected with Botox, let alone several needles, may not seem like a conventional treatment for migraine relief, it can be very effective. If you’re tired of the pain and side effects of chronic migraines, consider how Botox works for treating migraines and consult with an Ottawa Botox clinic for more information and advice. Botox for migraines is well worth it since this treatment gives you a chance to live a better quality of life.