Freedom from Headaches
Your chiropractor can work with you to relieve your headaches. You can also learn ways to make headaches less likely to occur. For best results, follow up with your chiropractor as instructed.
What You Can Do
Ask your chiropractor about simple exercises to relax your neck muscles. And practice good posture whether you are sitting or standing. This means keeping your ears, shoulders, and hips in line. You can also prevent some headaches by managing stress and avoiding headache triggers, such as alcohol and smoking.
Caring for Headaches
Headaches are often triggered by problems in the neck or shoulders. For instance, neck or shoulder muscles can tighten or overstretch. Joints and bones can move out of alignment. And nearby nerves and blood vessels can become irritated. These problems can be caused by injury. They can also result from poor posture or stress from repeated actions, such as looking down to read. With chiropractic care, you can get relief from headaches. You can also learn ways to help prevent future headaches.
Your Chiropractic Evaluation
Your chiropractor evaluates you to learn more about your back problem. Imaging tests, such as an x-ray or MRI, may be done.
You’re asked about your pain and symptoms. You’re also asked about what triggers your headaches. This can include emotional stress, certain foods and drinks, or poor sleeping habits. Mention past injuries or treatments, and whether you have other health problems. Also, tell your chiropractor about your daily activities such as work or exercise.
Your chiropractor examines your neck and checks the alignment of your spine. This helps locate areas of pain, stiffness, muscle spasm, and limited movement. Your posture, muscle strength, and reflexes are also checked.
Your Treatment Plan
Your chiropractor works with you to create a treatment program that meets your needs. This likely includes a hands-on technique called manipulation. Other treatment methods also help.
Manipulation (also called adjustment) improves joint flexibility and spinal alignment. During manipulation, your chiropractor carefully applies pressure to affected areas of the spine.Manipulation for headaches can help relieve nerve pressure, improve blood flow, and reduce headache pain.
The following treatments may also be used to manage your headaches:
Heat to relax muscles and ice to reduce swelling.
- Trigger point therapy to reduce tension and pain in tight muscles.
- Massage, ultrasound, and muscle stimulation to relax muscles, reduce muscle spasm, and improve blood flow.
- Stretching and strengthening exercises to improve muscle strength, flexibility, and range of motion.
- Traction for joint flexibility and disc health.