What do you do when you wake up and have a headache or you are working on a report and suddenly start to get a headache? The common response is to take some form of pain medication and this may relieve headache pain in the short-term. If you regularly get headaches or migraines, pain relieving medications will not offer you the long-term relief that physical therapy will provide.
Majority of headaches are cervicogenic headaches, which means that in some form they are related to the neck. Slouch posture, anxiety, and other reasons can contribute to strain, and injury to the cervical/neck muscles and joints. The neck pain can refer up into the back or side of the head, and may even go till the forehead, (depending on the part of the neck involved).
Approximately 70-80% of people across the U.S. deal with random or recurrent tension headaches. Acute (temporary or constant) and chronic headaches can be cured with physical therapy at any of our 5 locations. Request your appointment today!
What can a physical therapist do to help me with my headache?
If you have headaches, contact our office today. At Chesapeake Bay Aquatic & Physical Therapy we are committed to providing you with the best treatments for your headaches.
At your first appointment, one of our highly trained physical therapists will conduct a thorough physical evaluation including asking questions about your health history and symptoms. The evaluation will determine what type of headache you have and the origin of the pain/headache. The therapist, along with your input, will formulate a treatment plan and develop functional goals.
What are the different types of headaches?
The three main types of headaches include:
- Musculoskeletal Headache
A musculoskeletal headache is experienced when there is increased tension in the neck. This is usually a result of physical imbalances or weaknesses, although emotional stress/state can also be a causative factor. Injury to the neck (whiplash) is a common source of musculoskeletal headaches. With neck injuries the muscles and connective tissues in the neck can be strained and sometimes torn. This can cause pain in the head and shoulder, either one sided or both sides, depending on the area of injury.
- Tension headaches
These types of headaches can occur due to repetitive motions, quick movements, or poor posture in the neck. This type of headaches is caused by a strain on the delicate membrane that covers the brain called “dura mater”. The pain is presented in small muscles at the base of the skull that go into spasm when the dura mater becomes tense, shooting pain signals to the brain, and triggering the headache.
- Cervicogenic headaches
This type of headache is related to neck pain and usually involves the top three cervical spinal levels. These headaches can be caused by certain disorders like arthritis, or at times due to a concussion. Work-related stress can also cause a cervicogenic headache. Those people who have professions that require you to look down or slouch, are the most likely to develop this type of headaches. This may include hairdressers, IT professionals, teachers etc.
How can I relieve my headaches and book an appointment?
At Chesapeake Bay Aquatic & Physical Therapy, our individualized treatment plans for headaches focus on relieving pain, educating patients about proper posture, strengthening muscles in the neck and upper back as well as using various manual therapy techniques. The personalized treatment plan will help make your everyday life much more comfortable and manageable – minus the headaches! To schedule an appointment or speak with a therapist, contact us today in anyone of our 5 locations close to you. If you are uncomfortable coming into the clinic for treatment, we also offer TELEHEALTH visits at all 5 locations!