Headaches are horrible, there is no doubt about it. 50% of the population will suffer with a headache every year and 90% of the population will suffer with headaches at some point in their lives.
There are many different types of headaches such as migraines, tension, cluster, etc but I am going to talk about cervicogenic or suboccipital headaches.
Cervicogenic headaches are headaches which arise from fixation of the joints in the neck or spasm of the muscle secondary to stiffness in the joints. The characteristic pain is located in the base of the skull which can then radiate over the head to the forehead/temples. The exact location will depend on the joints and muscles involved.
Having poor posture or taking part in a lot of 'desk based work' is an example of how these headaches can be caused.
When our head comes forward we load the joints in the neck - the joints will become stiff as a consequence and the muscles have to work harder to support the head. Over time the muscles will elongate, spasm and form knots. These knots will then trigger radiating pain around the head giving headache like symptoms.
So how would you treat this?
Chiropractic treatment can help to restore motion in the stiff joints and Chiropractic and/or sports massage can help to relieve the tension in the muscles. Following this, simple home exercises for stretching and mobilising can be performed. Once your joints have learnt to move again, the muscles become loose and the pain reduce posture exercises can be implemented to prevent/reduce re-occurrence.
A simple test you can do at home to see if your suboccipital muscles are not functioning properly and could be causing your headache is as follows:
- Feel for the bony lump at the bottom of your skull.
- Drop down about half an inch, place one finger half inch to the left and the other half inch to the right.
- Press in and slightly up.
- Hold this for up to 30 seconds.
If you get a dull achy tension is could be a sign of an issue in the area.
Getting it checked is the best option, at BodyWorx we offer a FREE 15 MINUTE POSTURE CHECK for issues such as this where you can ask as many questions as you like before actually receiving treatment.
Why delay? Call now or book online.