Migraine Relief: Beta-Blockers to Block Headaches

Posted by on Nov. 26, 2012

Migraine Relief: Beta-Blockers to Block Headaches

When your migraine-free days are substantially fewer than when you have attacks, it may be time for you to consider taking preventive medicines. One of the most effective preventive medicines for migraine is a beta-blocker.

Beta-blockers were initially developed to treat a cardiovascular disease in the ’60s. However, when migraine-sufferers noticed a remarkable improvement in their debilitating headaches, the Food and Drug Authority (FDA) paid attention to the medicine. In the ’70s, a couple of beta-blockers were approved by the FDA as migraine prevention medicines.

The medicine is thought to be effective by its ability to relax blood vessels which dilate during migraine attacks. Beta-blockers also limit the blood vessels’ ability to expand, which further minimizes attacks. It should be taken regularly to effectively prevent migraines, particularly when you think that you will experience a stressful situation, such as a work presentation or when planning an event.

Similar to most medicines, beta-blockers also have side effects such as shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, and chest pains, among others. Because it increases a person’s heart rate, taking beta-blockers should only be taken under a doctor’s supervision. However, its ability to minimize the number the migraine attacks are proven effective in the medical community.


[Photo Credit: Nina J. G. on Flickr]

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