Two national newspapers – The Times and Dailly Telegraph – reported this week the benefits of acupuncture for headaches and migraine. NICE – (the National Institute for Clinical Excellence) – launched new guidelines for doctors to improve diagnosis and treatment of headaches and migraine.
Almost everyone experiences occasional headaches but almost 10 million people – a fifth of the adult population – suffer from much more serious and debilitating types. Of these, some seven million suffer from migraines, and another 1.5 million develop intense ‘tension’ type headaches on most days.
NICE say that painkillers can actually aggravate the symptoms making some people have even more headaches!
Dr Martin Underwood, a GP and professor of primary care, who chaired the NICE guidelines panel, says:
“Acupuncture is the only treatment that we’ve got a good evidence base for.”
“The eastern technique was “often not taken seriously enough”, claimed the neurologist, but trials showed it had a real beneficial effect.
In this latest report, NICE recommend that GPs consider up to ten acupuncture sessions for headaches and migraine – great news for headache sufferers.
It has previously recommended acupuncture be made available on the NHS for chronic lower back pain and arthritis.