Daith Piercing for Migraines: Hope or Hype?

I have been reading about this daith piercing for migraines ‘treatment’, if you can call it that, for ages now. I have been putting it off because I think it’s a load of bollocks, pardon my French!

I am just over all the alternative treatments that claim to cure migraines today.

Daith Piercing for Migraines

This daith piercing for migraines has no evidence to back it up.

It is not acupuncture. It is not the same as acupuncture.

I said that twice for emphasis! I’ve had acupuncture for twenty years, I taught it for a couple. 

Out of the 1120 points in the ears, the daith piercing does not coincide with any points commonly used to treat migraines. See large image

Now some things I read are for this treatment and some are against.

Last year when I did the original research and found that all of this started up and went viral from one person mentioning it on social media, I dismissed it. Then some big boys picked it up and off it went. Even more articles were being written from the one source! So I was not, am not convinced.

Today, I read an excellent article from the blog at Migraine Pal on a small study (informal anonymous poll) of 380 participants that shows the daith ear piercing for migraines may have some potential in the early months after the initial piercing. 

However, after one year only 20-30% of the 380 people are still seeing improvements. More specifically for migraine severity - 17% saw an increase, 54% stayed the same, 25% were somewhat or greatly reduced, and 4% have no more attacks.

Again, the 4% represents one person. But it still gets a ... yay!

And for migraine frequency, 13% saw an increase, 67% remained the same and 20% reduced. 

Results from 24 People After 1 Year 




17% = 4 people

13% = 3 people

No Change

54% = 12 people

67% = 16 people

Reduced Somewhat to Greatly

25% = 6 people

20% = 5 people

No Further Attacks

4% = 1 person

4% = 1 person

This means that daith piercing for migraines may break your cycle initially but you will need a more effective treatment for your long term strategy.

Here are some facts and you can decide for yourself if it’s worth trying:


  • It might help (BIG PRO)
  • Inexpensive
  • It might help
  • It might help


  • Other points on the ear are for migraine treatment. If you miss the point, you miss the effects. Acupuncture points have very specific locations; you will need someone highly trained. 
  • These daith points relate to the mouth and the anus, which have nothing to do with migraines.
  • Risk of infection. 
  • Requires diligent aftercare and can takes 6 months to heal.
  • It may not work.
  • Migraines might get worse. 

According to Live Oak Acupuncture Center

Clinical experience suggests that body piercings offer temporary (1-2 weeks) therapeutic benefit at best. They definitely do not represent a long term cure for any condition, including migraines.”  

This is directly from an acupuncturist.

I would love something this simple to work and reduce the suffering for millions of us. However, what works for one may not work for others in this case.

After weeks of research on this topic, I would recommend sticking to treatments that have some good evidence behind them. That is why I have been waiting to write this article on daith piercing for migraines to see if any studies find benefit.

If you like the look of the piercing, that’s something different. Go for it and let me know your results.

An Alternative To Daith Piercing For Migraines 

Traditional Chinese medicine uses, “auricular therapy,” that entails stimulating key points of the outer ear (that all correspond to body parts and functions) with seeds or needles as in traditional acupuncture. This treats an array of ailments.

Perhaps you could consider this as an alternative to getting a more permanent daith ear piercing for migraines. 

Find a good acupuncturist and get them to use either magnets, ear pellets, seeds, tacks or sub-dermal studs that they attach with a little piece of tape. You stimulate it, it hurts. Simple.

And it will be on the right point.

You could try this first to see if this is effective. And then you can choose to use this treatment or go for the full daith ear piercing for migraines. 

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With this new information, what one thing can you do now to reduce your attacks?