Migraine headaches are very common, affecting 12% of the worldwide population. Migraine headaches usually start in response to a particular trigger. Typically there is mild pain that gets worse to severe pain, characterized by throbbing or pulsing headache, often affecting one side of the head. Associated symptoms include nausea, vomiting and sensitivity to light and/or sound. Migraine sufferers may feel sensory warning symptoms, called an aura, just before onset of the headaches. Migraines appear to run in families. The mainstay of therapy is a group of drugs called “triptans” which work by blocking the release of pro inflammatory compounds in the brain. These are fairly effective for aborting or lessening harshness of migraine headaches. Unfortunately, side effects may be significant and may include rebound headaches, pain or chest tightness, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, or warmth, redness, or tingling beneath the skin. Triptans are also costly, and many insurance companies restrict the amount of these medications that may be dispensed to patients. Another group of medicines called ergot alkaloids can also be prescribed for migraines, however they are less effective than triptans.
Unfortunately, little research exists that proves the mechanism by which cannabinoids alleviate migraines, regardless of the overwhelming anecdotal reports from patients suffering together. Recent reports show that migraine headaches could be because of endocannabinoid deficiency and abnormal inflammatory response. Keep in mind that the endocannabinoid system exists to keep cellular homeostasis. Often migraine sufferers are convinced that headaches begin in response to some trigger, including bright light, hunger, hormones, or certain smells or foods. The trigger event causes an imbalance within the brain, which should then trigger the creation of endocannabinoids to maintain homeostasis. If a person is deficient in endocannabinoids, the imbalance continues, resulting in development of the migraine headache. The trigger could also cause inflammation, which may become uncontrollable and play a role in the resulting pain.
The few studies which have considered the web link between migraines and the ECS are summarized here:
Endocannabinoids and synthetic cannabinoids inhibited receptors that control vomiting and pain, working to block these symptoms. THC reduces serotonin release (which blocks vomiting and pain) through the platelets of human migraine sufferers.
Cannabinoids were found to bind to regions of the periaqueductal gray matter (an part of the brain that modulates pain transmission) that have been implicated in migraine generation.Three cases were reported of chronic heavy users of cannabis developing severe migraine attacks after abrupt cessation of use; authors suggested that these rebound attacks are like similar rebound headaches experienced by migraine patients whenever they abruptly stop other migraine treatment. Genes that allow for increased inflammation were present in migraine patients rather than found in control subjects.
Endocannabinoid levels were decreased in patients with chronic migraine and medication-over-use headaches suggesting that endocannabinoid dysfunction is involved in these two chronic conditions
Cannabis has been utilized for centuries to deal with headaches. Medical cannabis patients are finding relief of pain, less nausea, and sleep. Patients also report less frequency and fewer severity of their migraine headaches with medical cannabis use. Several well-known trigger factors for migraine headaches, specifically sleep deprivation and anxiety or stress, are alleviated with cannabis, thereby reducing the quantity of migraine attacks. Patients also are convinced that they lower your expenses healthcare dollars on expensive migraine medications, have less missed days in school or at the job, and possess overall improved quality of life.
There is no question that THC-rich cannabis will help abort or lessen the degree of a migraine, particularly if taken on the onset of the pain sensation. Some patients are convinced that low-dose, regular use of THC-rich medicine significantly reduces frequency and severity of the headaches. Other patients are convinced that daily CBD-rich cannabis prevents migraine from occurring. When the headache begins, a rapid delivery method such as inhalation or sublingual tincture is preferred by most. Specific strain choice comes from testing for most patients.
Most cannabinoids are classified under schedule 1 from the Federal Controlled Substances Act 1970, together with heroin and ecstacy. So they can not be prescribed by physicians, and through implication, do not have accepted medical use having a high abuse potential. Despite their legal status, hallucinogens and cannabinoids are utilized by patients for relief of headache, helped by the growing variety of American states that have legalized medical marijuana. Cannabinoids in particular have a long background of use within the abortive cuudpe and prophylactic therapy for migraine before prohibition and they are still used by patients as being a migraine abortive particularly. Most practitioners are unacquainted with the prominence cannabis or “marijuana” once held in medical practice. Hallucinogens are increasingly employed by cluster headache patients outside physician recommendation mainly to abort a cluster period and maintain quiescence that there is certainly considerable anecdotal success. The legal status of cannabinoids and hallucinogens has for some time severely inhibited scientific research, and you can still find no blinded studies on headache subjects, from which we could assess true efficacy.