Headaches can range from a minor annoyance to a crippling medical condition that affects your ability to function in daily life. Fortunately, chiropractic care can help with most forms of headache pain and also treat the underlying causes behind the headaches.
The Root Cause of Most Headaches
60-70% of all headaches are termed tension headaches; making them the most common form of headache by far. Most describe tension headaches as a dull pain or ache on either one, or both sides of the head or at the base of their skull. Some mention that their headache feels like a tight band around their head or eyes. Tension headaches often begin slowly, and usually later in the day, because they are often the result of posture issues or stress.
Biomechanically, a tension headache occurs when muscles of the head or neck are very tight and pulling against the base of the skull. Tension headaches can also occur when the nerves located at the base of the skull and upper spine or neck are being pinched; sending pain signals up through the head.
Other types of headaches can be sinus headaches from allergies and colds, migraines or cluster headaches, which are similar to migraines.
A Chiropractic Adjustment For Headaches Can Help!
Once a chiropractor evaluates your alignment they can suggest a treatment plan to help you reduce or eliminate your headaches. In addition to regular adjustments, your treatment might involve soft tissue treatments, stretching, and acupuncture.
"If the neck and upper vertebrae are out of alignment, we correct the alignment; which directly decreases nerve pressure traveling into the head and skull region," said Dr. Kirk Henderson of Sioux Falls Chiropractic. "Many times this is the quickest and most efficient way to relieve a headache."
Chiropractors often utilize soft tissue or deep tissue treatments to help break up "adhesions" or scar tissue that builds up in the neck and upper back muscles due to poor posture or injury. Another technique chiropractic care can offer is customized stretches, exercises and proper ergonomics to help improve your overall posture. Acupuncture can be a great complimentary therapy because it can decrease nerve pain and sensitivity in the head and upper neck. Your doctor may also suggest the use of a cervical pillow that can help restore proper neck curvature which can directly decrease muscle tension pulling on the base of the skull.
All together, these techniques should give you a great jump-start to healing the muscles of your neck and upper back so they are not pulling on the base of the skull and causing you headache pain.
Headache pain doesn't have to be a part of your life. And you don't have to rely on pain medications to experience relief! Click below for stretches to relieve neck pain!