Headaches require early therapy

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Early treatment reduces the risk of chronic headaches

On the occasion of the World Headache Congress in Berlin since Thursday, 1,200 experts provided information on the causes and new methods of treating headaches. The growing spread of various forms of headache was one of the main topics. In addition, the doctors urged early treatment, otherwise the risk of chronic headaches would increase massively.

About 80 percent of the population suffer from headaches on a regular basis, and children and adolescents are increasingly affected, according to experts such as Professor Andreas Straube from the University Hospital Munich at the World Headache Congress. The number of young headache patients has roughly quadrupled in the past 40 years, 80 percent of the students today suffer from recurrent headaches, the experts report. In order to avoid the transition to a chronic headache, according to the experts, treatment should be started as soon as possible after the onset of the headache. The problem: Headaches can be caused by a variety of causes, which makes finding the reasons for the pain and choosing an appropriate treatment method considerably more difficult.

Numerous children and adolescents suffer from headaches Since headaches are also a widespread problem among adolescents, according to Professor Andreas Straube, “prevention of headaches should start at school” at the World Headache Congress. Because a Norwegian study has clearly demonstrated that with the help of relatively simple and short educational programs at school, the risk of various forms of chronic headache can be significantly reduced, emphasized Prof. Straube. The expert is currently planning a study of his own in high schools in Munich to demonstrate the effects of educational programs. As part of these programs, the pupils are informed, among other things, about the connections between diet, physical activity and the rhythm of life with the occurrence of headaches. In addition, the effects of psychological stress and possible stress avoidance strategies are in the foreground of the education programs, explained Straube. The expert also pointed out that listening to music via the MP3 player is also considered stressful and that “anyone who listens to the MP3 player for more than an hour has a higher risk of headache”. In addition, it is known that physical activity and sport as well as a healthy diet can significantly reduce the risk of headache.

Pain perception in headache patients generally changed In addition to the general admonitions for early treatment and better prevention of headaches, the experts at the World Headache Congress also presented the results of recent studies that demonstrate an overall change in pain perception among patients with chronic headaches. According to Professor Hans-Christoph Diener from the University Hospital Essen, the central processing systems in headache patients are "dysregulated", which causes hypersensitization or hyperexcitability. This is expressed, for example, in a special sensitivity of the skin, which already perceives light touches as pain, reported Prof. Hans-Christoph Diener. In addition, the experts informed about the particularly serious forms of headache, such as migraines, which affect around ten percent of the population in Germany, or cluster headaches, which as recurrent massive episodes of pain lasting from 20 to 180 minutes, often hit those on the edge of unconsciousness float. Prof. Hans-Christoph Diener also referred to the new treatment methods that are currently being tested for migraines and cluster headaches. With the help of botox injections, for example, significant successes have been achieved in the treatment of migraines and a stimulator is currently being tested for cluster headache patients, which is implanted in the patient's upper jaw by stimulating the nerve bundles to avoid cluster headaches should contribute.

Treatment of headaches in naturopathy In naturopathy, various methods are used to treat headaches, with an amnesis primarily focusing on an intensive search for the causes of the headache so that suitable therapeutic measures can then be initiated. The throbbing, pounding, pulsating symptoms of migraines, which are often accompanied by nausea, ringing in the ears, vomiting or sensitivity to light, can be treated relatively efficiently, for example, with the help of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), according to a study published by the TCM clinic in April on Steigerwald. After leaving the clinic, over 70 percent of migraine patients described a significant relief from their symptoms, said the head of the TCM clinic at Steigerwal, Dr. Christian Schmincke, at the presentation of the study. "Because headaches have a variety of causes, comprehensive diagnostics are the focus of Chinese medicine," said Dr. Christian Schmincke continues. TCM sees a "causal connection" between the abdomen and headache, because "millions of pieces of information about a large bundle of nerves pass from the abdomen to the head every day" explained Dr. Schmincke and underlined the importance of nutrition in the treatment of headaches.

In addition, acupuncture and moxibustion play an important role in traditional Chinese medicine. In addition, Qi Gong movement exercises and tension-relieving Tuina massages are often used to support headache treatment, explained the head of the TCM clinic. Dr. advised taking painkillers to treat headaches. Schmincke, on the other hand, insists: "It is of no use to cure a disease if symptoms are suppressed." Rather, the treating therapist should use the symptoms to get to the bottom of the causes of the disease, because the goal must be "Freedom from symptoms without medication “Be, the specialist explained. (fp)

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