Migraines are complex disorders involving episodes of recurrent, severe headaches. Migraine headache is usually on one side and felt as pounding or pulsating. It may be associated with visual or sensory symptoms, collectively called “aura.” The aura may occur before, during, or after the onset of a headache. An episode of migraine can be very painful and last for hours, making day to day activities difficult. Women are more likely to suffer from migraines than men. A migraine headache is often accompanied by various disturbing symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, intolerance to light, sound, or odor, lightheadedness, neck stiffness, blurry vision, and sweating. The symptoms of migraine may overlap with other medical conditions; thus, a migraine must be diagnosed and managed by a board-certified doctor. Several alternative therapies have emerged for the treatment of migraines, such as aromatherapy, acupressure, and acupuncture. Lately, a special type of ear piercing called daith piercing has flooded social media and other media platforms as a potential treatment for migraine.
What is daith piercing?
Daith piercing is a type of ear piercing done on the innermost fold of the cartilage present at the entry of the ear canal. This tough fold of cartilage is also called the crus of the helix. The term “daith” seems to have originated from a Hebrew word (da’-at meaning knowledge). There were ancient beliefs that a piercing in this area makes a person listen to only intelligent speech. There have been claims in the last few decades that wearing an earring in this area helps treat migraines. There is, however, no medical or scientific evidence to support this.
Which side should you get a daith piercing for migraines?
You can get a daith piercing done in one or both ears. Some advocates of daith piercing suggest that it should be done on the ear which is on the side of the part of your head that pains the most during a migraine. Thus, if you get a left-sided migraine more often, get the piercing done on your left ear. Some experts on daith piercing suggest that the side where you get the piercing matters more in cases of anxiety-related migraines.
Is daith piercing effective for migraines?
There is no scientific evidence to support that a daith piercing can provide relief from migraine episodes. The supporters of this form of therapy suggest that the piercing works like acupuncture. The point at which daith piercing is done is crossed by the vagus nerve. The piercing puts pressure on the nerve causing relief in migraines. There are, however, no medical reviews or studies so far that support this notion. Experts suggest that daith piercing in some people may have acted as a placebo effect. The placebo effect means getting comfort by receiving a noneffective substance, such as a sugar pill. This may be determined by genes where some people may be more likely to have a placebo effect than others.
Is daith piercing safe?
Daith piercing can have certain side effects, which may include:
- Infections (such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, human immunodeficiency virus or HIV, and tetanus)
- Allergic reactions
- Dermatitis (skin inflammation)
You must always consult a qualified medical practitioner to manage your migraine. Since migraines can happen because of many reasons, your doctor can design your treatment accordingly.