Chiropractic Treatment for Headaches

Treating Headaches With Chiropractic Care

Almost everyone in the country suffers at least one headache in their lives. However, the cause of a headache tends to differ from one person to the other. As a matter of fact, the triggers of a headache can vary from stress, food, dehydration, environment and many others. Regardless, a headache can be caused/referred from nerves, ligaments, joints or muscles.

Here are the primary causes of headaches:

Migraines

The true cause of migraines isn’t known, but there appears to be a relationship between the environment and the patient’s genetics. Migraines are usually associated with triggers and these can be anything from foods and additives, hormonal alterations, sensory and physical factors, sleep, stress, certain medications and even environmental changes.

Tension-Type Headache

This one happens as a result of tension in the facial or neck muscles, which produces pain. Factors that are associated with this type of headache include anxiety, stress, poor posture, eyestrain, etc.

Cervicogenic

This is a form of a headache that originates from the cervical spine structures or the neck. Pain is usually triggered by neck movement.

Cluster

This type of a headache is similar to migraines in that the cause is not known. However, it is suggested that cluster headaches can be caused by issues in regulating hormones, sleep, blood pressure or temperature. Other triggers or causes suggested include tobacco, alcohol and drug use.

Symptoms

Migraines

Frequent and extreme pulsing or throbbing sensation on one side or both sides of the head accompanied by sensitivity to sound and light, nausea as well as vomiting. This form of a headache can ideally be followed by an aura, usually present as tingling, blind spots or a flash of light.

Tension-Type

The symptoms of this kind of a headache include constant pain as well as pressure usually described as achy and dull. Pain is felt on both sides of the head, temples, forehead as well as the back of the head.

Cervicogenic

In this type, pain is often on one side of the head and it starts at the base of the skull and then spreads to the front region of the head.

Cluster

Symptoms include severe, penetrating, explosive or burning recurring pain that’s located on one side of the head. This type of headache has a dramatic onset and can occur frequently in clusters or patterns over a particular period of time. It usually starts behind or around the eye and causes watering or redness of the eye, droopy eyelid, runny nose, swelling of the nose as well as sensitivity to light and sound.

How Professional Practitioners Can Help

Chiropractic experts can help diagnose, manage and treat headaches. However, referral and co-management in some cases can be the most ideal form of treatment. Chiropractic care can be an effective form of treatment for tension-type and cervicogenic types of headaches, especially when spinal manipulative therapy is included in the procedure. Research has shown that chiropractic care can ideally reduce the frequency and intensity of migraines. Depending on your medical history and assessment, the practitioner can recommend patient reassurance, modalities, manual therapy as well as lifestyle recommendations such as rehabilitation.

Of course, the management plan will depend on examination findings and your needs.