Headaches - we can help!
Unless you are part of the lucky minority of people who have never suffered from a headache, this blog is for you. Studies have found that around 4 out of 5 people will have experienced a headache in the past 12 months, and more than 1 out of 3 people in the past 2 weeks. The impact on quality of life for people who suffer from migraines has been likened to that of people with diabetes & angina.
Headaches can be triggered by an extreme array of causes, including but not limited to:
- Stress and anxiety
- Lack of sleep
- Muscle tension
- Poor posture
- Lack of movement
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Dental or jaw problems (teeth grinding)
- Eye strain
- Drugs & Alcohol
The list goes on…
So it's fair to say that a large part of getting on top of your headaches is to identify the triggers or daily contributing factors - and make a change. And naturally, a BCNC practitioner can help you with this process, as we pride ourselves on the ability to treat you holistically, thinking about your day to day activity, work ergonomics, nutritional intake, posture, etc., in order to get to the root of your problem.
Appropriate health care and manual treatment has been effective at treating and preventing headaches. Perhaps you have a headache when you come to the clinic, remedial massage with Danny or Michelle can help to iron out myofascial trigger points (or “knots”) and tension that builds up from day to day stressors. Our resident Myotherapist - Daniel - has also had great success treating headaches with the use of myofascial dry needling, which you can read about here.
Seeing as you are reading this article right now, my guess is that you are stooped over a computer or smart device reading from a screen? How is your neck posture? Do you have a headache right now? Here is a quick and easy exercise you can perform from your desk (or even in the car at a red light) to strengthen your postural neck muscles and stretch your sub-occipital muscles which tend to develop tension and become a key cause of tension headaches.
Step 1: Sit up tall and straight!
Step 2: Tuck your chin in (to give yourself a double chin).
(You can place your finger on your chin if it helps, as you want to bring your chin straight back, not up or down)
Step 3: Rest and return your chin back to a neutral position.
Step 4: Repeat steps 1-3 10 times.
*The key here is slow, controlled and pain free movement
The take home message from all of this? Headaches suck!
But the good news? There is always something you can do to either treat a concurrent headache, or improve your quality of life by decreasing the frequency and/or intensity of your headaches.