Migraine is characterized by severe headache, along with several other symptoms, such as nausea, loss of vision, and weakness. Most people suffering from a migraine experience intense, often disabling pain. It is difficult to manage the symptoms of migraine as its physiopathology is still unclear.
Literature shows positive effects of therapy in treating neuropathic pain.  Research has also demonstrated the efficacy of Laser Therapy also known as low-level laser therapy (LLLT) in the management of chronic pain. It is an essentially safe, painless, and non-invasive treatment method. The use of Laser Therapy in the treatment of migraine seems to promise positive results.
The Burden of Migraines
Migraine doesn’t just bring pain and discomfort; it is also the sixth-highest leading cause of years lost due to disability. Repeated attacks, accompanied by the continual worry about the next one, might harm relationships with family members, friends, and coworkers. A chronic headache issue may make it more difficult for a person to recover from other ailments. For instance, compared to healthy people, migraine sufferers are two to four times more likely to develop depression.
What Causes Migraines?
The neurovascular theory seems to be the most probable answer, although the actual physical causes of migraine are still unclear. According to this theory, migraines involve a dysfunction of the central nervous system, leading to vascular change that initiates a variety of biochemical processes. Simply put, during a migraine attack, the body’s pain control system malfunctions.
Long-Term Effects of Laser Therapy on Migraines
Laser Therapy utilizes a laser beam to accelerate the body’s healing process and stimulate cells. The photons from the light source travel several centimeters through the skin and are absorbed by the mitochondria, which are the cells’ energy-producing organelles. This energy drives a variety of beneficial physiological reactions that restore normal cell function. Here are some other documented benefits of Laser Therapy that can be helpful in the treatment of migraine:
- Increased blood flow to the pain site leads to pain relief 
- Increased cellular energy 
- Improved serotonin levels 
- Accelerated cellular repair and healing 
- Increased NO (nitric oxide) production 
Research and LLLT for Migraines
Research shows that low-level laser therapy is effective in the treatment of chronic migraine, reducing both pain intensity and frequency. Another study reviewed pain levels, the amount of medicine consumed, and the number of headache days in patients with migraine symptoms. All patients showed significant improvements in the aforementioned parameters. Here are some other research findings that demonstrate the efficacy of Laser Therapy for other symptoms associated with migraines.
Treatment of Orofacial Pain and Other Headache Disorders
A systematic review was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of Laser Therapy in the treatment of neuropathic orofacial pain. This comprehensive search included 997 studies which investigated the effects of LLLT in treating trigeminal/occipital neuralgia and burning mouth syndrome. The various studies evaluated LLLT in isolation and contrasted it with a placebo, with another form of treatment, or with other LLLT application techniques. The review concluded that all studies demonstrated a significant decrease in orofacial pain intensity.
Modulation of Serotonin Levels
Our body manages pain with endorphins, serotonin, peptides, and nitric oxide (NO). As mentioned earlier, a migraine disrupts the body’s pain-management system, and the production of serotonin plays an important role in managing pain. One study reveals that Laser Therapy can modulate serotonin production. The research involved 10 female patients experiencing a headache. Blood serotine (5-HT) levels were monitored before the treatment and compared with the results collected after 3 days of treatment. The results revealed a 34% progressive increase in serotonin levels (on average), leading to substantial pain relief.
Treatment of Trigger Points
One study shows positive effects of using Laser Therapy in specific pain zones or trigger points. These trigger points were identified as myofascial zones of a specific sensitivity with the largest projection of focal pain sites. The study involved more than 200 patients with headaches and facial pain, among other pain sites. The results showed a 70% decrease in acute pain while chronic pain diminished by more than 60%. Patients also saw reduced rigidity and improved mobility. According to the study, these effects were possible due to improved microcirculation and oxygen supply to the hypoxic cells. Moreover, when compared to other treatments, Laser Therapy was very effective in minimizing the sleep disturbance caused by migraines.
Chronic migraine doesn’t only result in decreasing a patient’s quality of life, it also poses the risk of addiction to pain killers. Therefore, the benefits of having a non-pharmacological therapy for such conditions are evident; and several studies have pointed out the positive effects of photobiomodulation. It is a safe, effective, pain-free, and non-invasive solution for migraine.
You can finally have considerable relief from migraine symptoms such as throbbing pain, nausea, photosensitivity, and loss of vision. Berman Partners’ collection of FDA-cleared, cutting-edge laser devices can help reduce pain associated with migraine and decrease the duration of attacks. You can customize the settings, and one device can be used for a variety of problems and many sessions. If you would like to learn more, fill out the contact us form on our website.
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