Causes

 

Headaches are a common thing we see in our society. There are up to 3 million migraine sufferers and up to 7 million tension type headache sufferers. Studies done in the US have shown migraines have a direct and indirect cost of $1 billion per year. Studies in Canada show spend of up to $40million in over the counter and prescription drugs for relief of headaches.

The most common types of headaches that are experienced are tension type/ cervicogenic headaches. These headaches respond very well to chiropractic care. The mechanism as to why we experience this type of headache is due to joints of the neck. These joints and affect the nerve information that are supplying the muscles of the neck and shoulders, which cause them to become tight, tender and refer pain. It is common to experience associated neck and shoulder pain with these types of headaches.

Migraines are also another common type of headache which is generally characterised as throbbing, sensitivity to light or sound as well as nausea or even vomiting. While the exact causes of migraines are still being studied, evidence indicates it may not be a genetic link. Factors that contribute to migraines are diet, stress, hormonal fluctuations and fatigue. While the mechanism for migraines is vascular and involves the blood vessels, chiropractic has been shown to be effective in the reduction of frequency and intensity.

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How to Treat It

Cervicogenic and tension type headaches respond very well to chiropractic care. Improving the function of the nerves through chiropractic adjustments, and reducing poor muscle patterns from lifestyle stresses like poor posture, improper workstations and self-directed exercises, all are part of the approach for managing and treating these headaches.

One scientific study found that 22% of those studied who received chiropractic treatment reported more than a 90% reduction of headaches another 49% reported that the headache intensity was significantly reduced. (1)

Another scientific study found chiropractic treatment reduces tension and migraine headaches. This study found that of the 729 subjects involved 613 who received chiropractic care had outcomes that ranged from good to excellent. (2)

1. Younes Jahangiri Noudeh, MD, Nasibeh Vatankhah, MD and Hamid R. Baradaran, MD, PhD. Reduction of Current Migraine Headache Pain Following Neck Massage and Spinal Manipulation. Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. 2012; 5(1): 5–13.

2. Vernon HT. The effectiveness of chiropractic manipulation in the treatment of headache: an exploration in the literature. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 1995 Nov-Dec;18(9):611-17

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FAQ

  • Are Chiropractic adjustments safe?

    In the words of the New Zealand Government’s Inquiry, chiropractic care is “remarkably safe” (1). Chiropractic has an excellent safety record. It is the result of a conservative approach to health that avoids invasive procedures or addictive drugs.

    In relation to the treatment of neck and back pain, studies have shown that a course of chiropractic care was 250 times safer than a course of anti-inflammatory drugs(2).

    The US Governments’ National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine rated Chiropractic treatment effective and relatively safe for the treatment of lower back pain when performed by a trained and licensed practitioner (3). In fact 14 out of the 16 International Clinical Guidelines for the treatment of lower back pain recommend Chiropractic care (4).

    So rest assured, you are in safe hands.

    1. Chiropractic in New Zealand: Report of the Commission of Inquiry. (1979). Hasselberg PD, Government Printer, Wellington, New Zealand
    2. Dabbs,V., & Lauretti,W.J. (1995). A Risk Assessment of Cervical Manipulation vs NSAIDs for the Treatment of Neck Pain. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 18(8), 530-536
    3. Koes BW, van Tulder M, Lin CW, Macedo LG, McAuley J, Maher C. An updated overview of clinical guidelines for the management of non-specific low back pain in primary care. Eur Spine J. 2010 Dec;19(12):2075-94
    4. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/pain/spinemanipulation.htm 2016 Web
  • I think my problem is muscular, can chiropractic help?

    Of course! Your nerves that exit from your spine connect to many areas including muscles. When nerves are irritated at the spine, there is spasm and tightening of the muscles that are connected to those nerves. Many people find that once they get adjusted and the nerves are functioning well, the muscles naturally relax. We use soft tissue techniques to further address the muscles and also have a local referral network if further work is needed.

  • How do I know what type of headache I have?

    At our office we make sure we assess your spine thoroughly. We explain all our findings and help you make sense of what is going on. At the end of our assessment we will advise you on the best course of action and how to best help you get to your health goal.

  • How many visits will it take?

    Each person is unique and has their own unique set of circumstances. The same applies to their condition and the most appropriate course of treatment. At our office, we make sure we create a detailed treatment plan and help you answer the questions of what we can do, how long it will take and the best things to do to get the best result.

  • What if chiropractic care doesn’t help?

    At My Health Chiro we endeavour to provide the best care possible. If at any point we find that your treatment plan isn’t achieving our intended goals, we will make sure we find out why. If we find at any point we are unable to help you toward your goal, we will find someone who will. We want to make sure you get the care you need, not waste your time or money!

  • Can I refer a friend or a family member?

    Certainly! At My Health Chiro we’re a patient centered chiropractic wellness practice for Maribyrnong, Maidstone, Footscray, Aberfeldie, Essendon, Ascot Vale area. We are more than happy to help or help find a chiropractor closest to them.

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