Do You Get Frequent Headaches or Migraines?
Chiropractic Care for Headaches
Headaches are terrible. The pain and throbbing alone is enough to make you want to stay in bed all day. It seems like nothing helps.
Can Chiropractic Care Help Headaches?
Did you know chiropractic care can help alleviate the pain of headaches, and even help prevent them? Chiropractic techniques can help when a person is seeking immediate relief for a headache. In addition, when a person has a chronic tendency toward headaches, chiropractic care can help with prevention.
When a headache hits, probably the last thing anyone feels like doing is visiting a chiropractor. But a chiropractor knows how to identify and relieve the pressure spots. Chiropractic techniques can lift pressure from the spine and neck, the very pressure that is causing the headache. The body can then realign to promote normal functioning of the skeletal-muscular and nervous systems.
Neck Pressure and Headaches
Some headaches can originate in the neck. The neck is very complex. It sustains the entire weight of the head and is able to twist and flex to help a person navigate. The cervical spine (neck) is located within a narrow space. In that space are lots of moving parts, including bones, joints, muscles, nerves, and blood vessels.
When anything causes the neck to tighten, all of those parts are affected, along with the ways they work together. The neck can be affected in so many ways: sitting for hours on an unsupportive chair; leaning on a couch in a way that doesn’t support the spine properly; stress; obesity; a sedentary lifestyle; poor nutrition; carrying a heavy shoulder bag; extreme temperature changes; a fall. Any of these, and more, can cause the cervical spine to come out of alignment or experience inflammation. These can also cause stiffness and tension in the muscles that support the cervical spine.
A tight neck can pinch a nerve or restrict blood flow. This can lead to a headache. A neck that is out of line can pull on muscles, affecting shoulders and spine, which can also cause a headache. One problem can cascade into many, because all those parts work together to keep the body upright and moving. Even a hip joint that is out of line can put strain on the neck, and vice versa. Because the entire skeletal-muscular and nervous systems work together, stress and strain in another part of the body can lead to a headache.
A Holistic Approach
Chiropractic care looks at the whole skeletal-muscular and nervous systems. The chiropractor uses techniques like manipulation and range-of-motion to bring the entire system back into alignment. This allows all the nerves, muscles, blood vessels, and joints in that small neck space to work as they are supposed to work.
Causes of Headaches
Headaches are a symptom that something is off balance in the body. Sometimes headaches may be caused by a skeletal-muscular issue, like a cervical spine that is out of line. When that issue is corrected through a chiropractic adjustment, the headache often goes away.
Stress headaches are common as well. It’s easy to carry tension in the neck. This can tighten the muscles, constrict the nerves, and restrict blood flow. Tension can even pull the cervical spine out of alignment. A headache is a very common symptom of stress.
Even if the headache has another cause, it may also be aggravated by a spine that is out of alignment or by pressure on the cervical spine.
This works in the reverse as well. If a person suffers chronic headaches, the tension in the body from fighting the headache can put pressure on the neck and spine, leading to other problems. Chiropractic care can help with readjustment, so that everything is in line, functioning the way it is supposed to.
Chiropractic Help for Headaches
Chiropractors are able to assess any places in the skeletal-muscular and nervous systems that are out of line and might be causing the headache. They are also trained to look for signs of any other underlying cause, where further medical attention might be needed.
If headaches are due to poor posture, repetitive stress motions, excess tension, nutritional deficiencies, or other stresses on the spine, the chiropractor can help the patient learn how to remedy the situation. By introducing gentle exercises and advising the patient on lifestyle changes, the chiropractor can help the person take steps to prevent future headaches.