Reflexology is a system of massage techniques believed to reduce tension and treat illnesses. It is based on the theory that reflex points located in the hands, feet and head are linked by nerves to every other part of the body. Studies have shown that when properly applied, these techniques can help to reduce or alleviate migraine symptoms. Curious whether it’ll work for you? Check out these 14 migraine relief massage tips:
Reflex Points in The Hand
1. Brain Reflex
The most general tension relief for migraine pain can be achieved by targeting the source of the problem – the brain. To do this, press firmly on the pad of the thumb. You can either hold this pressure or work in a circular pattern for several seconds. This reflex point can prevent a migraine from progressing by sending energy to the brain.
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2. Neck Reflex
For those who carry a great deal of tension in their neck and shoulders during a migraine attack, apply pressure to the fleshy area at the base of the thumb and either hold the pressure or move in a circular motion for 5 to 10 seconds. This will help to reduce tension in the neck.
3. Eye Reflex
During a migraine attack, some people experience pain or pressure in their eyes that can be accompanied by visual disturbances. To alleviate discomfort, target pressure just below the index and third finger. Hold the pressure or work in a circular motion for several seconds to clear away the energy pathway that leads to the eyes. This massage can be intermittently performed with the brain reflex for added relief.
4. Stomach Reflex
Many migraine sufferers also battle nausea during an attack. By applying pressure at the midpoint between the pointer finger and thumb and working that pressure in a circular motion for several seconds, you may be able to reduce or eliminate your queasiness.
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5. Solar Plexus Reflex
The solar plexus is a collection of sympathetic nerves located at the pit of the stomach. Targeting this area is believed to help the entire body relax. To do this, apply pressure to the center of the hand and work pressure in a circular motion.
Once you complete desired reflex points on one hand, be sure to apply the same treatment in the same order on the other hand.
6. Additional Neck Relief:
If tension in the neck is severe, you can achieve additional neck relief by placing both index and third fingers on either side of the neck and apply pressure. Make small circles and tilt your head from one side to the other for deeper reflex point penetration. Work pressure up to the base of the head and back down to the base of the neck.
Reflex Points In the Feet
7. Brain Reflex:
In the same manner you applied pressure to the hand, press on the pad of the big toe and hold for several seconds or work in a circular motion.
8. Neck Reflex:
To target tension in the neck, move pressure down to the base of the big toe and continue applying pressure in a held or circular manner for several seconds.
9. Eye Reflex:
For symptom relief that affects the eyes, press below the third toe and the toe next to the big toe. Hold pressure or work pressure in a circular motion for several seconds
10. Stomach Reflex
To combat nausea, apply pressure starting at the center of the foot and work the pressure toward the inner edge of the foot.
Once you’ve finished, you can move on to the other foot or begin again with the hands.
Massage Techniques in the Head
11. Bridge of Nose:
Position your thumbs on either side of the bridge of your nose at the point where it joins your forehead (just to the inside of each eye). Press your thumbs toward each other to create pressure that is firm but not painful. Hold the pressure for ten seconds before releasing and repeating up to five times.
12. Rotated Bridge of Nose:
Remain in the same position described in tip 11, but rotate your thumbs so their pads face upward toward your forehead. Close your eyes and apply upward pressure for 10 seconds before releasing and repeating.
13. Under Eyebrow:
Using your pointer and thumb fingers on both hands, pinch the skin below each of your eyebrows, beginning near the bridge of your nose. Carefully pull the skin away from your face and hold it for a few seconds. Release the skin and reposition fingers, moving closer to the outside edge of your eyebrow. Repeat the same technique moving toward the outside edge until you’ve covered the length of skin below the eyebrows.
Rest your three middle fingers on each hand gently against the temples on either side of your head. Apply even pressure and hold or work in a circular motion for 10 seconds before releasing.
It is recommended that you drink a glass of water before performing massage techniques and after. This helps to flush away any toxins released during the massage and may also prevent any soreness. Each technique can be done individually and is considered safe. You can even combine migraine massage with other treatments to help ward off migraine pain.