There are many possibilities as to why headaches occur and the first step is to establish what the cause is. A well trained professional can establish whether the cause is a specific illness or whether it has a more straight-forward explanation. The most common causes of headaches are tension headaches and migraines. Tension headaches are suffered by many people and cause significant problems. These tend to originate in the neck and sometimes the shoulders and can be treated effectively with osteopathic technique. They are often associated with whiplash, work/repetitive strain, muscle tension/stress and muscle spasm in the neck. Migraines are mainly caused by more complex hormonal reasons which constrict the cranial blood vessels, however, they often have a tension element to them as well and can be successfully treated with manual therapy.
Symptoms of tension headaches:
- Tension/pain in neck
- Tension/pain in shoulders
- Stressful life
- Sitting at computer
- Eyesight issues
- Repetitive arm/hand movements
Migraines tend to present with a headache on one side of the head along with sensitivity to light or sound and sometimes visual disturbances.
If you are experiencing symptoms such as confusion, loss of consciousness, muscle weakness in face or body, slurred speech, severe pressure in skull or any other unusual symptom you should contact your local health practitioner immediately.
Headaches require a careful and expert diagnosis by a trained professional. They are very common in clinic and where appropriate, receive careful and expert treatment. Firstly an assessment and analysis is performed to establish how serious the headache is and then, if appropriate, gentle treatment is performed to mobilize structures, decreasing inflammation, and freeing up the structures causing the symptoms. This reduces pain and increases mobility.
Ultimately the aim is not just to treat it but prevent the symptoms from reoccurring. This includes education on how to keep the area in question healthy in the future. Please call to talk to a trained professional if you want to know more.