Headaches and migraines are nasty things, which affect a lot of the population (over one third of men and over one half of women experiencing headaches, and at least 1 in every 7 adults experiencing migraines). Have a look at this video or our osteopath explaining the different types of headaches.
Being this common, it’s not a surprise that our osteopaths would treat many patients suffering from headaches and migraines each week. This week we are going to cover how osteos can treat and prevent headaches and migraines – if you or anyone you know gets recurrent headaches or migraines then this blog is for you!
Holistic nature of osteo treatment
Osteopaths are holistic practitioners. What does this mean? It means we treat not only the area of concern and pain, but also the surrounding areas. This applies to headaches and migraines in that we would gently treat the head itself but also the neck, jaw, shoulders and upper back. Muscles from all of these areas attach up near the base of the skull, so when they’re tight they can cause pulling through the head and neck and contribute to headaches. Similarly, the joints that these muscles act on can become stiff which can contribute to headaches and migraines. Have a look at this video of our osteopath Dan treating jaw pain, which often can lead to headaches.
What your osteo appointment will involve:
When you come in to see our osteopaths for your headaches we will take a thorough history and assessment to determine the type of headache you’re experiencing, examine what muscles and joints are contributing to it, and then have a discussion around what triggers may be leading your headache. Treatment will usually involve a combination of techniques (including soft tissue massage, myofascial release, joint articulation, stretching, dry needling and manipulation of the joints) depending on your specific headache, and the practitioner you’re seeing. At the end of your appointment, your osteo will provide you with some at-home management strategies to help you manage your headaches and help to prevent them from reoccurring.
The triggers or causes of your headaches should be managed and/or eliminates. Some common things we look at and try to help are:
- Grinding or clenching of the jaw
- Poor desk-based posture
- Increasing water intake to an appropriate level for the individuals needs
- Weak postural muscles which lead to tightness or over-activity in the headache-causing muscles
Addressing these above things, or other causative factors to the headaches will help our patient manage their headaches better. Sometimes desk-based work isn’t able to be eliminated completely, and we understand that! But small adjustments to set ups, or creating regular breaks can be enough to improve headache frequency!
There is lots that you can do! James has put together some at-home management strategies for the neck and midback. Have a look at this video where James is showing you some easy stretches you can do at home, to help address tension and stiffness you may have through your neck which could be causing your headaches!
If you have any questions about headaches or migraines, or are wanting to see one of our osteos to get on top of your regular headaches once and for good, give us a call at the clinic on (03) 9773 8085 or book an appointment online.
Have a great week!
Bec @ Total Balance Healthcare
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This blog post is an educational tool only. It is not a replacement for medical advice from a registered and qualified doctor or health professional.
Phone: (03) 9773 8085