Headaches can be a real pain, literally. They can disrupt your daily life, causing you to feel irritable and unable to concentrate. While everyone experiences headaches differently, there are five key types of headaches that are commonly identified based on their symptoms. Tension headaches, sinus headaches, migraine headaches, cluster headaches and cervicogenic headaches all have their own unique symptoms, ranging from mild-to-intense pain to throbbing and pressure around the eyes, cheeks and forehead.
Family history of headaches, neck stiffness and stress are common factors that may contribute to headaches. Worldwide, almost 50% of the population suffers from a headache episode so let’s explore the first line treatment options for primary headaches, how minor misalignments in the spine can play a role in causing headaches and how chiropractic adjustments can help relieve the conditions.
Do you have a primary headache?
Do you know that the majority of primary headaches are associated with muscle tension in the neck that often accompanied by the misalignment or restriction of the facet joint(s) of the neck? This is commonly caused by a sedentary lifestyle or “text neck” from overworking in front of a computer, poor posture and/ or any injury or accident. Fortunately, our chiropractic clinic here in Singapore can help fix and reduce the discomfort associated with headaches
A chiropractor can assess, diagnose and treat headaches with chiropractic adjustment, soft tissue therapy, trigger point therapy combining with the use of modern therapeutic modalities such as electrical stimulation, spinal decompression therapy, ultrasoundand through providing effective advice on nutritional and lifestyle changes and postural education.
In fact, postural realignment and correction of the neuro-biomechanical dysfunction of the cervical spine, muscles and nervous system can be just as effective or even MORE effective than relying on medications for pain relief. Chronic headaches can also be treated through chiropractic alignment, according to a study published by the National Institute of Health.
Can you identify the type of headache you have?
The most common of all headaches- usually presents itself as a mild to moderate feeling of tight band pressing dull pain around the head bilaterally.
Commonly occurs due to pressure in the sinuses. Its clinical features include nasal obstruction hyposmia and it is often worse in the mornings and upon forward bending. It is characterised as a frontal headache accompanied by pressure-like and dull pain in one or more regions of the face, ears or teeth.
Migraine headaches are characterised by moderate to severe pulsating pain, usually on one side of the head and may be accompanied by nausea and/or vomiting. Migraine sufferers may prefer resting in a dark quiet room to recuperate.
Often described as severe piercing, stabbing pain around one eye that can last for weeks or even months. It may also refer to the temporal region, lower facial region or back of the head.
Cluster headaches are often caused by medication overuse and can lead to chronic tobacco use and obstructive sleep apnea.
Caused by issues in the neck or cervical spine. It usually starts in the neck and radiates to the back of the head and forward to one side of the head.
It is associated with limited range of motion of the neck and the headache may be aggravated by any neck movement and/or having the head in one position for a prolonged period of time.
Each type of headache has its own set of symptoms and requires a different approach to treatment. Hence it is important to find out the root cause of the headache.
What if you leave your condition untreated?
Have you ever wondered what your headaches really mean, and what long-term effects they could have if left untreated? If you frequently take pain relief medications for your headaches, you may experience a decreased quality of life in terms of work, hobbies and leisure activities. However, pain medication is not always effective and can cause serious side effects, such as an increased risk of gastrointestinal bleeding or liver damage. Additionally, they only provides short-term symptomatic relief. Long term reliance on medication to treat headache can actually lead to another form of headache- Medication Overuse Headaches.
This is why natural healing through chiropractic is essential for anyone who frequently suffers from headaches. Research shows that spinal manipulation, one of the primary treatments provided by doctors of chiropractic, may be an effective treatment option for tension headaches and headaches that originate in the neck. In fact, a 2014 report in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics found that interventions commonly used in chiropractic care improved outcomes for the treatment of acute and chronic neck pain. Furthermore, a 2011 study in the same journal found that chiropractic therapy, including spinal manipulation, can improve migraine and cervicogenic headaches.
How My Chirocare can help you.
Chiropractic care has become an increasingly popular alternative for long term relief by getting to the root cause of the problem.
At My Chirocare, after a proper consultation and thorough examination, if appropriate, we use spinal manipulation to restore proper spinal function and alleviate the stress on your musculoskeletal and nervous system, reducing the frequency and intensity of headaches. We also provide nutritional advice, suggest changes in diet and offer advice on posture, ergonomics, exercises and relaxation techniques. These changes can help to relieve joint irritation and tension in the muscles of the neck and upper back as well as pressure on the nerves that supply the neck and up the head.
While some patients experience quick relief after their first chiropractic adjustment, others may require several sessions before experiencing significant relief. If you are suffering from recurring headaches and find that your lifestyle is being affected, it is time to seek help.
At our clinic, we help address the root cause of your headaches and experience long-term relief without the negative side effects associated with medication. Conquer your headaches and start a pain-free life with us here!