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Headache Care

Migraine therapy – from your dentist

Thursday, Feb 10 2011


Only migraine sufferers understand the misery the condition can bring. It is also one of the least well-funded aspects of medicine. What if there was another factor which triggers migraine beyond the expertise of your GP or neurosurgeon?

Migraine is a strange thing. There are so many trigger factors which can bring on the pain.  The problem is that normal medicine deal with treating the chemicals pumped out in the brain, by this time the migraine has already started and it’s like trying to ice skate up hill.

Visual auras, triggering smells and sounds are not abnormal sensory input to the brain, rather it’s your brain processing extra information it normally filters out.

Long-term sufferers will start off with a short list triggers, be it food, smells or sounds. Gradually over time this list gets longer and longer. Migraine is a problem with how the brain deals with input the chemicals released are a result of this change in how the brain operates.

Patients who suffer with migraine often wake with tension headaches in the morning and rarely ask why they get this, rather accept it as part of the problem.

They often are early risers, around 6.00am to 6.30am or earlier, and if they have an extra hour to sleep on a weekend they feel even worse when waking.

Additionally, they feel completely exhausted and feel they just can’t get enough sleep.

Many people who hear about these symptoms suddenly listen with interest as they usually suffer from these fatigue effects also.

The reason for this is quite simple. Tooth clenching and grinding stops you from entering deep, restful sleep. Additionally, this grinding and clenching fatigues the muscles and causes tension headaches.

If you went to the gym and picked up heavy weights and did bicep curls for eight hours, you’d expect your arms to hurt. This is exactly the same process.

You have no control over clenching and grinding of your teeth. It’s pre-programmed into the same part of the brain that deals with breathing and heart rate.  However with correct management, we can reduce the intensity at which this occurs.

When people clench and grind their teeth, they overload the sensory input part of the brain. They wake up with this part of the brain effectively fatigued and it takes very little to push this over the edge. The result is a full blown migraine.

I used to have migraines myself three times per month, since I underwent treatment I’ve not had a single migraine since. This was nearly two years ago.

So if this is the case, why do dentists not undertake this treatment more often?

It’s because dentists are not trained at undergraduate level to undertake this type of treatment.  It is also not very well understood and is therefore not well delivered. In addition, some dentists offer this type of treatment but are using outdated philosophies.

I’m fortunate to have had training in the US on this type of treatment. Previously, the best medications for migraines have been either Topamax, amytryptyline or some form of beta blocker.  The result is that these medications effectively sedate you and interrupt your life.

I have seen patients who have had migraines so severe that they were hospitalised to have CT scans and MRI scans all of which show nothing. They are medicated up to the eyeballs and still have little success. The medications already mentioned can give around a 20% reduction in symptoms. The treatments I can offer have FDA approval in the US as the most effective treatment against migraine and give an 80% reduction in symptoms within six weeks for 75% of people, all without the need for medication. I have seen patients and made them pain free overnight, seen them come off their medications, and even throw their trigger list in the bin. They also feel fully rested and get their life back.

I’m privileged to have had such extensive training and want to help those who have similar problems as myself, namely migraine. I have even seen patients who have had treatment unsuccessfully with other dentists and made them pain free, it’s the refinement of the treatment which is all important.

I have even treated a GP who had no idea I could help. I am in fact so confident I can help that I even offer a money back guarantee. I can’t do what a GP or neurosurgeon does and they can’t do what I can do. It’s a team effort. There are many other subtle conditions which give rise to these types of problems, if they’re not addressed properly your results will be seriously limited.

Pav Khaira
Dental Spa

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