The prevalence of headaches amongst humans continues to grow worldwide. However, many still fail to perceive the frequent correlation between this seemingly-psychological reality and physical characteristics.
Understanding the qualities and causes of a headache can go a long way in determining proper treatment. The International Classification of Headache Disorders 2 distinguishes between two main categories of headaches. The most common, referred to as primary headaches, include tension-type and migraine pain that can either be intermittent (occurring less than 15 days out of the month) or chronic (occurring more than 15 days per month, for at least 3 months). These headaches are idiopathic in nature, regardless of the severity of the symptoms. The International Headache Society (IHS) recognizes the second type of headache as resultant of diseases or other conditions that generally will persist until its underlying cause is addressed. Although secondary headaches are rare, they can become critical without necessary urgent care.
Whether a result of nature or nurture, headaches do not have to be endured hopelessly. The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics contains a study conducted in 2011 that discovered the tremendous effect of chiropractic treatment on the prognosis of headaches – particularly migraines and cervicogenic headaches (a secondary headache caused by a neck disorder or lesion). Chiropractors examine the body to find any misaligned vertebrae, also called subluxation, that could be causing disproportionate nerve interference – causing or exacerbating, in this case, a headache. Not only does chiropractic administer spinal adjustments that alleviate tension throughout your body, but it also offers suggestions regarding nutrition and exercise that could make a tremendous impact alone. Our doctors at SF Custom Chiropractic aim to both bring you immediate relief and develop your body’s ability to heal itself in the long-term.
Here are a few things to remember when not at SFCC to avoid headaches as well as other uncomfortable conditions:
- Avoid teeth clenching – try not to have your upper teeth touch your lower teeth unless you’re swallowing
- Integrate low-impact exercise into your daily routine
- If in a fixed position for a long period of time, stretch every 30 minutes, expanding the range of motion of your head and neck. (For example, try using one hand to pull your head and neck over to one side, and do the same to the other side. You can feel quite a stretch without even leaving your seat!)
- Stay hydrated – drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day