Date of Conferral
Brandon J. Cosley
Gate control theory posits the idea that the brain and spinal cord have the ability to control the perception of pain sensation throughout the body. Biofeedback provides a proven way to teach a person how they may control their heart rate, breathing, and skin temperature. Through this process, individuals learn to lessen their migraine frequency and intensity. There are no studies to date that have measured the effectiveness of biofeedback in conjunction with medication for migraines in children despite established evidence of success in adults. In this study, an online format via SurveyMonkey was used to document the perceptions of parents with regard to the observation of their children's migraines. Pre and posttreatment measures were recorded to document migraine activity with implementation of biofeedback or medication using the Individualized Numeric Rating Scale. A total number of 48 participants reported about their children's migraine frequency and intensity. One group of 24 parents were asked to give information on medication only treatment, and an additional 24 parents provided information on biofeedback and medication. The data were processed using 2 mixed model (i.e., 1 within and 1 between) ANCOVAs. Although frequency and intensity of migraines decreased across both groups posttreatment, there was no statistically significant interaction between the within subject factors of time and type. In this particular data set, medication plus biofeedback was not more effective than medication alone. The implications for positive social change using the results of this study are the potential for happier, healthier, migraine free children who are more able to be productive and contribute positively to society.