Headaches Detailsby Ellen Bialo, DC
What causes headaches?
Headaches are one of the most common medical complaints, right alongside lower back pain. Because they can be caused by so many factors, it's no wonder they're as common as they are. Some of the most common causes include:
- chronic stress and tension
- neck strain or injury
- upper back strain or injury
- sports-related accidents, car accidents or falls
- problems sleeping
- eye strain or improper eyewear prescription
- sensitivity to bright lights
- circulation and nerve problems
- issues affecting the spine
- high blood pressure
- certain medications
Most headaches are tension headaches or migraines, occurring as a result of muscle strain combined with nerve impingements and interference with normal circulation.
What are migraines?
Migraines are severe headaches that can cause additional symptoms like nausea and vomiting, problems with eyesight, and extreme sensitivity to light and sound. They affect women far more often than they affect men. Although the cause is not completely understood, some studies have suggested migraines may be related to problems with nerve signals and may be compounded by circulation issues.
How does chiropractic treatment help relieve chronic headaches?
Chiropractic care using non-force adjustments helps optimize the alignment of the spinal vertebrae including the bones in the neck – the cervical vertebrae – to relieve impingements on nerves and blood vessels that can interfere with both nerve signal transmission and circulation. Plus, it helps release tension in muscles and other soft tissues, one of the most common causes of headaches. Improved circulation also helps ensure toxins and waste materials are removed from the tissues and optimizes the flow of oxygen and nutrients to stimulate the body's natural healing processes. Additional techniques including massage and therapeutic stretching exercises can also be helpful.