How To Use Cefaly

Find out how to use the Cefaly Migraine Treatment Device.

How to Use the CEFALY Migraine Treatment Device

Frequently Asked Questions

CEFALY is the first FDA Cleared/CE Marked device of its kind for the treatment of migraine headaches. It is a comfortable, drug-free, approach to help relieve pain and decrease the number of migraine days. In technical terms, it is an external trigeminal nerve stimulator, which is a non-invasive device placed on the head to stimulate and desensitize the Trigeminal nerve.

Research identifies the Trigeminal nerve as a center for migraine pain and can be accessed under the skin of your forehead. The CEFALY device has been specifically designed to make contact with the nerve endings of this branch via an electrode positioned on the forehead between the eyebrows. Once an electrode has been placed, the device magnetically secures a connection and begins to send tiny electrical impulses through the top branch into the Trigeminal nerve.

A session with the ACUTE setting lasts one hour and is used during a migraine attack. The session can be repeated for another 60-minute session if necessary or if another migraine attack occurs. A session with the PREVENT setting lasts 20 minutes. It must be used daily and may be done at any time throughout the day, though an evening session is preferred.

Learn more about how CEFALY works.

The CEFALY device should not hurt and is safe. However, the sensations experienced while using the CEFALY device are novel to most people and can take some adjustment. To make treatment more enjoyable, we recommend you increase intensity in small increments of time, over the course of a few weeks. If you feel the intensity is too strong for you, simply press the button to stabilize the session.

If 10 seconds after you’ve selected your session, you wish to increase the intensity, you can press and hold the button to quickly ramp up the intensity to your desired strength. When you release the button, the intensity will stabilize and remain constant. Should you press and hold the button again, the intensity will increase again. The maximum intensity is reached after pressing and holding the button for 30 consecutive seconds.

Electrode Ingredients

CEFALY electrodes consist of small self-adhesive conductive gel pads.

Regular electrode ingredients (Item's #11101 + #11201): Water, Glycerine, Polyacrylate Copolymer, Potassium Chloride

Blue Gel electrode ingredients (Item's #11106 + #11202): Water, Povidone, Polyethylene Oxide, Magnesium Acetate

If you have known allergies to acrylates, use our hypoallergenic electrode alternatives.

How Often Do You
Need to Purchase Electrodes?

The number of electrodes you need each month and how long a single electrode will last depends on your treatment frequency and storage practices (each individual is different).

  • The recommended number of uses for a single Standard Electrode is 20.
  • The recommended number of uses for a single Hypoallergenic Electrode is 10.

CEFALY electrodes are designed for the number of uses noted above, provided that your skin is properly cleansed, and the electrode is carefully stored. Electrodes that have been overused or are dirty lose their capacity to transmit electrical impulses and are ineffective.

Indications, Contraindications, Precautions & Warnings

CEFALY® DUAL is the first FDA-cleared medical device of its kind for treatment of migraine.

CEFALY DUAL is indicated to be used for:

  • The acute treatment of migraine with or without aura in patients 18 years of age or older.
  • The preventative treatment of episodic migraine in patients 18 years of age or older.

CEFALY DUAL is for patients diagnosed by a physician with migraine per the indications for use.

Do not use if you:

  • Have implanted metallic or electronic devices in the head.
  • Are suffering from pain of unknown origin.
  • Have a cardiac pacemaker or an implanted or wearable defibrillator.

Consult a doctor before use if:

  • You are under 18 years of age.
  • You are over 65 years of age.
  • You are pregnant or may become pregnant.
  • You suspect or know that you have heart problems.
  • You had a recent head injury.
  • You have ever suffered a seizure.
  • You have never been diagnosed with a migraine by a health professional.
  • You have a headache that is different from your usual migraines.
  • You have the worst headache of your life.
  • You have fever or a stiff neck.
  • You have a headache that began after a head injury, exertion, coughing, or bending.
  • You experienced your first headache after the age of 50 years.
  • You have a migraine so severe as to require bed rest.


  • Do not use CEFALY DUAL while sleeping.
  • Do not use CEFALY DUAL in a wet environment, such as in the bath or shower.
  • Do not use CEFALY DUAL while driving, operating machinery, or during any activity that requires you to be alert and focused. Wait for 1 hour after each treatment session before resuming any such activity.
  • Do not use in the presence of electronic monitoring equipment (e.g., cardiac monitors, electrocardiogram (ECG) alarms).
  • The CEFALY DUAL and electrodes are designed for and should be used only in the forehead region.
    • Do not use CEFALY DUAL in the neck region.
    • While CEFALY DUAL’s design prevents this, do not use CEFALY DUAL close to the thorax (chest region).
  • Use CEFALY DUAL only on normal, intact and clean skin.
    • Do not use over open wounds.
    • Do not use over skin eruptions.
    • Do not use over swollen, infected or inflamed areas.
    • Do not use over, or close to, cancerous lesions or skin abnormalities that could be cancerous.
  • Use caution or avoid using CEFALY DUAL if there has been any loss of feeling in the skin of your forehead or scalp until the normal feeling is resumed.
  • Use CEFALY DUAL only with the electrodes and accessories recommended by CEFALY Technology.
  • Keep the CEFALY DUAL out of the reach of children.
  • Strangulation risk due to the length of the charging system cable.
  • Suffocation risk in case of swallowing the electrode.
  • If you have known allergies to acrylates, contact CEFALY TEchnology for hypoallergenic electrode alternatives.

Consult your healthcare provider before using the CEFALY DUAL if you have Medication Overuse Headache, Chronic Tension-Type Headache, or Refractory Migraine, as the safety and effectiveness of the device have not been demonstrated for subjects with such conditions.

If the frequency of your headache is not reduced after 2 or 3 months of daily use of Program 2 (prevention), ask your doctor.

The long-term effects of chronic use of CEFALY DUAL are unknown.

Migraines may indicate that you have a serious medical condition. You should have them checked by a doctor.

You should check with your doctor if you do not understand or if you are not sure whether any of the above Contraindications or Warnings apply to you or your condition.

Cefaly Dual Electrode Use & Device Placement Tips

1 Cleanse Your Skin

It's important to cleanse your skin before every CEFALY treatment session. This will help ensure the electrode attached securely to your forehead.

  • Use a CEFALY cleansing wipe or soap and water to wash between and above your eyebrows. Afterward, be sure to dry your skin thoroughly.
  • The use of makeup removing products is NOT recommended as a substitute for soap and water.
Step 1 illustration - woman cleaning her forehead

2 Opening the Electrode

Open an electrode packet and slide out the plastic sleeve. Gently peel the electrode from the clear plastic sleeve. Be sure to save both the packet and sleeve for later use and storage of your electrode.

Step 2 illustration - opening the electrode pack

3 Position the Electrode

Use a mirror to place the electrode correctly on your forehead. Once in place, run your fingers along the electrode several times to check that it's flat and firm against your skin.

Step 3 illustration - woman aligning the electrode strip on her forehead

4 Connect Your Device

On the back of your CEFALY device, there are two magnets that allow the device to attach to the electrode securely. Hold your device so these magnets are exposed and bring it toward your forehead. The device will pull itself toward the electrode and automatically settle into its proper place.

Once your device is securely attached to the electrode on your forehead, you're ready to select your treatment program.

Step 4 illustration - woman removing the electrode strip from her forehead

5 Storing Electrode at End of Treatment

At the end of your selected treatment session, your CEFALY device will automatically shut off. You can now remove the device by pulling it away from the electrode. Then gently detach the electrode from your skin.

Step 5 illustration

For additional information on CEFALY device and electrode use and care, please reference the User Manual provided within your CEFALY device kit.