Take Back Control of your Life with Headache Treatment in Physical Therapy.
Many people don’t recognize the incredible impact Physical Therapy can have on a person’s headache symptoms!
Learn More About Your Headache Treatment.
- These headaches typically feel like a dull ache in the back of the head and upper part of the neck. They are usually on one side or the other but they can switch sides.
- There are several nerves that run up from the top part of your neck into the base of the skull. The Greater Occipital Nerve is a major one.
- This nerve comes out of the second joint in your neck and runs up back side of the head
- Tightness in the muscles and joints around the nerve will create inflammation and pain along its pathway.
- If you have stiffness rotating your head left and right and have a pain distribution about the size of your hand on the base of your skull you may be appropriate for physical therapy
Physical Therapy for Headache Treatment.
- Headache treatment includes manual therapy to improve the rotation of the first two joints in the neck.
- soft tissue techniques and Integrative Dry Needling to reduce the inflammation, muscle guarding and improve blood flow around this nerve to reduce pain.
- Exercise to strengthen postures and positions that will keep you from re-inflamming this area are all part of a standard physical therapy treatment.
- Migraine is a neuromuscular event in the brain.
- Migraines often have a rams horn type pattern starting at the base of the skull wrapping up and around the temple to directly behind your eye. They are often accompanied by nausea, light sensitivity and/or aura.
- There are triggers that can increase your likelihood of getting a migraine.
- Common triggers such as food, alcohol, smells, light, stress may impact sympathetic activity triggering a migraine.
- Trigeminal irritation is major player in migraine threshold. I
- The trigeminal is a cranial nerve that controls the muscles that we chew with and provides sensation to the sinuses and face.
- Jaw pain and “sinus pressure” accompanying you headaches = trigeminal irritation.
- The trigeminal nerve has a contributing nucleus primarily at the second and third levels of the neck but can be from the first four joints in your neck. Inflammation and reduced movement at these areas can increase the sensitivity of the trigeminal nucleus which will increase the threshold for you to get a migraine.
Physical Therapy for Migraine Treatment.
- Our goal is not to cure the migraine but to help you reduce the triggers that set off your migraine symptoms.
- Again manual therapy to the upper cervical spine including mobilization, manipulation, Integrative Dry Needling can improve this to reduce this inflammation and sensitization.