Did you know 9 out of 10 Americans suffer from headaches? Some are occasional, some frequent, some are dull, and some cause immense pain and nausea. What do you do when a headache starts up? Research shows that spinal manipulation may be an effective treatment option for tension headaches and other headaches that originate from the neck.
Headaches have many causes or “triggers”. These may include food, environmental stimuli (noise, lights, stress, etc.), and/or behavior factors (insomnia, blood sugar changes, etc.). The majority of headaches are associated with muscles tension in the neck and vertebral subluxations. So, what can you do about them?
If you know what your trigger is for your headaches, the first step is to try and avoid those triggers or make changes in your lifestyle to reduce them. If you spend a lot of time fixed in one position (in front of a computer, reading, sewing, etc.) take a break and stretch ever 30 minutes. Low-impact exercise (walking, low-impact aerobics, etc.) may help relieve pain associated with headaches. Avoid teeth clenching. This is a common cause of headaches and can also lead to stress in the temporomandibular joints (TMJ). Another way to help avoid headaches is to stay hydrated by drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day. If headaches are still bothering you, it’s time to see a chiropractor.
A chiropractor can adjust the neck and upper back to improve spinal function and alleviate stress on your nervous system. They might recommend additional therapies (hot pack, muscle work, stretching exercises, etc.) to assist with the adjustment and relieve any tension that could be in the neck. If you know of any children that suffer from headaches, chiropractors can treat them as well. Doctors of chiropractic undergo extensive training to help their patients in many areas beyond just treatment for low back pain. They are trained to treat patients of all ages!