Dealing With Headaches & Migraines?
A significant portion of people suffering from headaches can be treated wthout the use of medication." In most cases, the triggering effect of a cervicogenic headache is limited movement of the joints in your upper cervical spine. Normally, each of the joints in your neck moves freely and independently. When joints dont move properly, they cause muscles to tighten.
In some cases, there may be some restrictions in your neck that initiate a painful cycle of stiffness, muscle tightness and joint inflammation. This may cause increased irritation and sensitivity in the nerves leading from your neck into the back of your head. These cervicogenic headaches are frequently reduced with the use of specific chiropractic adjustments, functional dry needling, and corrective exercise.
If the picture to the right looks like the typical pattern of your headaches, more than likely muscle tightness is the culprit. When specific muscles become tight they can refer pain to specific parts of your body. Your upper trapezius muscle is one of the most commonly overused muscles in the body and the place where most people hold onto their stress. Funcitonal dry needling has been utiilzed to reset tight muscles and have a significant impact on headache frequency and intensity.
Chiropractic adjustments help in keeping the joints from becoming stiff and immobile. Utilizing both dry needling and adjustments in clinic are great for helping you feel good in the short term, but your help is needed so that the treatment can sustain ovetime. One or two specific exercises are often given to patients to ensure that the muscles do not become tight and the joints do not become immobile again.
You are what you repeatedly do. If you sit at a desk 8 hours a day, your neck joints and muscles are constantly in the same position. Week after week, year after year the same stresses are put on these joints and muscles. Having proper posture allows each of our muscles and joints to act how they are supposed to.
Posture plays a role in our spinal health, but movement plays just as important a role. If we do not move our necks in a complete range of motion, overtime we will lose that motion and become stiff. If you don't use it, you lose it. Move your body as musch as you possibly can to avoid muscle tightness and joint stiffness
It is NOT normal to be in pain. If you experience headaches regularly, you should be evaluated to determine the pain generator. Often times when a headache occurs it can disrupt your daily activities and decrease your function while at work. We have worked with patients who have experienced headaches for over 30 years that no longer experience any headaches in only a few visits. If you have headaches that bother you during the day, let us help you get rid of them.
If you notice significant neck stiffness, rash, numbness or tingling on your face, dizziness, loss of consciousness, difficulty speaking, difficulty swallowing, difficulty walking, nausea, or numbness radiating into your arms or legs call 911.
Make sure that you are drinking 6-8 glasses of water each day, more in hot weather or when you've been sweating. Try to keep a water bottle with you at all times so that you always have access to water. Since cervicogenic headaches are the result of a mechanical problem, medicines are often ineffective. Fortunately, we give our patients specific movements to work on at home and posture tips.