Massage therapy is a powerful antidote to pain, including headache.

Some 36 million Americans suffer from a severe form of headache, migraine, more than have asthma or diabetes combined. Migraine is characterized by pulsating or throbbing headache pain that can be moderate to severe in intensity.

MASSAGE Magazine has reported recently on various research studies showing that abuse and trauma experienced in childhood may lead to arthritis, headache and other pain conditions later in life.

Evidence also points to childhood abuse-physical, sexual, verbal, or emotional-being “notably” prevalent in migraine patients, according to a leading migraine researcher.

“We are finding an unusually high prevalence of childhood abuse in migraine patients,” Gretchen E. Tietjen, M.D., said in a press release from the American Migraine Foundation and American Headache Society. “This seems to be more than a psychological reaction to maltreatment. We are examining the idea that early abuse, no matter what kind, creates permanent changes in the neurobiological system of abused persons that may make them more prone to migraine pain.”

Tietjen said there is considerable preclinical and clinical evidence that chronic early life stress results in changes in the neuroendocrine system that controls reactions to stress and regulates many body processes including the immune system as well as mood, emotions, and sexuality.

Related articles:

Stress in Childhood May Shorten Lifespan

Abuse in Childhood Can Lead to Headaches in Adulthood