Headaches & Migraines
Headaches Getting In The Way of Your Routine?
Physiotherapy Offers a Solution for Headaches.
Do you suffer from chronic headaches or migraine-related pain? If so, you might wonder exactly what contributes to your pain. Poor posture, stress, and other factors can cause you to experience weakness, strain, and injury to the neck muscles and joints. This pain radiates up into the scalp, side of the head, and even the forehead, depending on the area of the neck involved.
Headaches are the third most commonly reported source of pain across the world, so rest assured that you’re not alone if this is something you’re dealing with.
Most of the time, the common reaction is to take some form of pain-relieving medication. It’s true that physiotherapy and massage therapy isn’t normally someone’s first thought when they have a headache, however, it can really help.
Medications may help to relieve pain in the short-term, but if you are constantly suffering from headaches or migraines, pain relief drugs will not provide you with the same long-term effects that physiotherapy and massage therapy will.
If you are in Ottawa and suffer from headaches, don’t hesitate to contact us. Whether they are acute and temporary or constant and chronic (such as migraines), headaches can all be treated with physiotherapy and massage therapy at Anatomy Physiotherapy Clinic. Call our St. Laurent clinic at 613-680-4477 or our Orleans clinic at 613-424-4488 for more information and to set up an appointment.
Do you have one of these headaches?
A greater majority of headaches are attributed to cervicogenic headaches, meaning that they are related to the neck in some form.
However, many people may not know this, but there are actually different types of headaches that all develop from different causes. The three main types of headaches include:
A traumatic injury to the neck, such as whiplash, is a common cause of musculoskeletal headaches. With neck injuries such as whiplash, the muscles and connective tissues in the neck can become torn or strained. This can lead to agonizing pain felt in the head, as well as in the face, shoulders, or neck.
Musculoskeletal headaches occur when there are significant amounts of tension in the neck. This is typically a result of physical imbalances, weaknesses, or damage, although emotional tension (such as stress) can also be a contributing factor.
Tension headaches are caused by a strain on the “dura mater,” which is a sensitive membrane that envelops the brain. The dura mater lies in close proximity to small muscles at the base of the skull that go into spasm when the dura mater becomes strained, thus sending pain signals to the brain and causing your headache.
This is the most common form of headache, and these can occur due to repetitive motions or poor posture in the neck/head. If you’ve ever noticed someone holding their head at their desk at work, it’s most likely due to one of these!
Professions that require a down-turned motion of the head or neck are the most prone to developing cervicogenic headaches. This may include hairdressers, long-haul drivers, chefs, nail artists, jewelers, etc.
Cervicogenic headaches are related to neck pain, involving the top three vertebrae of the neck. These headaches can develop as a result of certain conditions, such as a concussion or arthritis, but work-related strain can also trigger a cervicogenic headache.
How can physiotherapy and massage therapy give me relief from headache pain?
Choose PT states that physiotherapy and massage therapy has been shown to help manage chronic headache pain in the following ways:
- It can decrease or resolve the intensity, frequency, and duration of headaches.
- Physiotherapy can help you cut back on the need for medications.
- Therapy can improve function and mobility.
- It can improve the ease of motion in the neck.
- You can experience an overall improved quality of life.
At Anatomy Physiotherapy Clinic in Ottawa, we are dedicated to providing you with the best treatments for your headaches. At your initial appointment, one of our highly trained physiotherapists or registered massage therapists will conduct a physical evaluation and ask you questions about your health history and symptoms, in order to determine what type of headache you are experiencing and where the pain is stemming from.
A treatment plan will then be designed specifically for you and your recovery, most likely involving targeted exercises, manual therapy, and patient education to help reduce the number of headaches you end up experiencing in the future.
Remember that no two patients are alike, and neither are two treatment plans! The only way to find out what a therapist will recommend for your headache pain is to request an appointment with one.
Ready to find relief?
At Anatomy Physiotherapy Clinic, our treatments for headaches focus on relieving pain, improving posture, and strengthening muscles in the neck and upper back.
These will all help in making your daily life much more comfortable and bearable – without the pain of headaches! Call our St. Laurent clinic at 613-680-4477 or our Orleans clinic at 613-424-4488 to speak to one of our Ottawa physiotherapists or registered massage therapists, or click here to request your appointment.