Can Magnesium Work for Headaches?

Every day, many people all over the world experience severe headaches regardless of gender or even age. Headaches can happen in different parts of the head. Sometimes the pain may be throbbing, sharp, and sudden. Headaches may last for a few hours without medication. However, some may last for several days even with medication. While most cases can be as a result of mild stress, severe headaches can be an indication of serious underlying health complications. Some of these complications include;

  • Depression
  • High blood pressure
  • Migraine attacks

What Causes Headaches?

Continued research indicates that constant headaches can be as a result of magnesium deficiency. One study showed that people who took magnesium oxide regularly reported a significant reduction of headaches. Today, many individuals use magnesium oxide to curb severe headaches and migraine attacks. 

A popular headache research organization categorized headaches as follows:

Secondary Headaches

These headaches happen when a certain condition triggers the pain nerves of the head. These conditions include:

  • Blood clots
  • Hangovers as a result of drinking alcohol
  • Dehydration
  • Poisoning from carbon monoxide gas

Primary Headaches

Primary headaches usually happen due to overworking the pain-sensitive nerves of the head such as:

  • The muscles
  • Neck and head nerves
  • Blood vessels

Types of Headaches

Headaches are divided into various types. It is important to note that the severity of headache symptoms depends on the type of a headache. 

Migraines

Migraine headaches are severely painful. The throbbing pain usually intensifies on one part of the head. Many people suffering from migraine attacks report the following symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Lightheadedness

Research categorized migraine attacks as primary headaches. Some migraine attacks are severe, consistent, and end up disrupting an individual's normal schedule. A migraine headache can last between few hours and several days.

Tension headaches

The most common type of a primary headache has to be tension headaches. They happen as a result of muscle contractions around the neck and the head. Transformation of tension headaches is likely to start moderately during the day. A mild painkiller can help reduce the symptoms of these headaches. Additionally taking magnesium oxide supplements has been known to reduce their frequency. Tension headaches are usually moderate but can also be severe. 

Cluster headaches

Cluster headaches are short-lived. They happen suddenly and disappear as fast. However, they can happen more than 7 times in a day which is quite uncomfortable. Despite the fact that they are short, they can be very painful. Research shows that cluster headaches are seasonal and tend to happen during certain times each year.

Studies are still underway to establish the real cause of cluster headaches. However, experts believe that they are triggered by stimulation of a nerve found in the face. Perhaps this explains the intensity of pain around one or both eyes.

Rebound headaches

Rebound headaches happen as a result of prolonged use of painkillers. Studies show that even though painkillers relieve pain, overusing them can cause this type of a headache. Surprisingly pain relievers taken to treat other symptoms than headaches do not cause rebound headaches. Subsequent symptoms of rebound headaches are:

  • Lack of sleep
  • Neck pain
  • Restlessness
  • Nasal congestion

Rebound headaches have been found to stop once individuals stop taking the trigger pain killers.

How to Diagnose Headaches

The doctor may ask the patient to describe the type and frequency of pain. Tests may be recommended in severe cases such as:

  • Brain scans
  • X-rays
  • Blood tests

Headaches can be treated using pain relievers. Doctors can recommend other preventive medication depending on the severity of a headache. Following the doctor's prescription is very important. It prevents one from overusing the medication. Doctors may prescribe bed rest in order to give the patient enough rest. 

How to Use Magnesium for Headaches

Magnesium oxide is a supplement that provides the body with the recommended magnesium levels. This element is believed to be safe for use. However, some people may report mild side effects such as nausea and vomiting. A doctor can recommend the best dosage to avoid these side effects.

Individuals can also increase their magnesium levels with magnesium rich foods. Magnesium can be found in various foods such as:

  • Brown rice
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Yogurt
  • Avocados

Conclusion

Headaches are painful and uncomfortable. It is important to go for further testing to determine the root cause of severe headaches. Discuss with the doctor about magnesium oxide supplements before taking them.

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