Mindfulness meditation not effective at reducing migraine headaches

As published in JAMA Internal Medicine, a team of American researchers showed how mindfulness meditation is not effective for reducing the frequency of migraine headaches.

For the study, 89 adult participants, most of whom were female, had been instructed to take part in either mindfulness-based training or headache education for a span of several weeks.

The participants had reported experiencing four to 20 instances of migraines per month, throughout that span of time.

“In this randomized clinical trial of 89 adults who experienced between 4 and 20 migraine days per month, standardized training in mindfulness and yoga through mindfulness-based stress reduction did not improve migraine frequency more than headache education about migraine, as both groups had similar decreases,” the study suggests.

“Mindfulness-based stress reduction did not improve migraine frequency more than headache education, as both groups had similar decreases; however, mindfulness-based stress reduction improved disability, quality of life, self-efficacy, pain catastrophizing, and depression out to 36 weeks, with decreased experimentally induced pain suggesting a potential shift in pain appraisal.”

“In conclusion, mindfulness-based stress reduction may help treat total migraine burden, but a larger, more definitive study is needed to further investigate these results,” researchers determined.

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