Tension Headaches

Did you know that the commonest headaches (tension type) are due to pain coming from the neck and jaw muscles or directly from the facet joints of the neck.

By restoring movement to those joints with Chiropractic adjustments, improving the health of the muscles through dry needling, gently applying pressure and stretching the tense muscles these symptoms resolve.

When combined with a program of strengthening you can keep these symptoms at bay and fulfill your full potential through a restoration of a healthy state. Chiropractic also works for migraine headaches too.

In a study by Castien et al in 2011, 82 subjects with chronic tension headaches were treated by either usual medical care or manual therapy (MT) over a max of 9 treatments. The results were then monitored over an 18 month period. After 8 weeks a significant difference was found in the MT group, with reduced frequency, duration and intensity when compared to medical group. This continued for 26 weeks.

Migraine Headaches

Migraine headache diagramMigraines are classically one sided and throbbing in nature, with or without flashing lights, nausea, vomiting, numbness or tingling and in extreme cases even temporary paralysis or blindness can occur. These headaches are due to a disturbance in brain activity that goes in a wave from the back of the brain to the front. The visual areas are therefore usually affected first, followed by sensation in the body and then motor control. It is thought to be due to increase excitability of the nerve cells in the brain causing them to fire impulses resulting in the sensations that follow and pain from deeper areas being activated. There can be various triggers, which many sufferers are aware of such as red wine, chocolate and cheese. It is also thought that hormone levels may be a factor too.

Although these headaches are of a more central origin (ie from the brain), treatment of the joints and muscles can reduce the body’s sensitivity to stimuli that build up to trigger an attack by helping to reduce the potential for the nerves to get too excited.

There are other more serious types of headache.  As Chiropractors we are skilled in the diagnosis of these conditions and will refer on for further tests if we suspect that the cause is not due to the muscles or joints.

You may also be surprised to know that prolonged or regular use of pain killing medication such as Codeine can actually cause headaches too!!