Advanced Therapy Partnership



Hypno-psychotherapy and Migraine

Migraine - severe disabling headache, often accompanied by nausea and vomiting, is sometimes extremely difficult to control with drugs.

The headaches - often localised to the front left or front right of the head - are the consequence of changes in the blood vessels supplying the affected area. In the course of an attack, these vessels become contracted, reducing the blood supply to the area, and then over-compensate for that situation by dilating, or expanding rapidly. The nerve endings in the area naturally react to this over stimulation, experiencing it as intense pain, sometimes accompanied by visual symptoms such as flashing lights. These sensations may be so severe as to cause nausea and even vomiting.

Migraine attacks may be triggered by several things, but high levels of stress and/or anxiety are frequently implicated. Hypno-psychotherapy has been found to be effective in controlling migraine, reducing the frequency and intensity of attacks and minimising the need for pain control medication. One of our clients had a history of migraine of over 20 years, and was using a combination of Migril (a potent ergotamine) and up to 12 Co-codamol daily. After 4 sessions of therapy, she reported little or no headache, had discontinued the use of Migril and needed no Co-codamol. She had learned how to control her migraine, and re-gained a decent quality of life. We have on file a letter from her GP in which he says "Thank you for your help with what for me has been a difficult problem over the years."

Therapy is aimed at reducing overall stress/anxiety levels, and teaching the client to control the blood flow in the affected area, thereby reducing the frequency and intensity of migraine attacks and the need for reliance on pain control medication.

It is important to note, however, that the symptoms of migraine can be very similar to those produced by other conditions, and it is essential that such a possibility is ruled out before commencing hypnotic treatment for migraine. For your protection, therefore, your therapist may wish to confirm with your medical practitioner that there is no underlying condition that requires medical treatment.