Headaches come in many different forms, tension headaches, toxic headaches, migraine headaches, and headaches associated with people not getting enough sleep and being stressed. Sufferers often struggle through life taking medication and shutting themselves away in a dark room, sometimes for days at a time, every time they are struck down by a headache. Depending on what is causing your headache, determines what type of care you need.
How Chiropractic helps
Patients usually present to a Chiropractor following trying many forms of treatment in an attempt to cure their various types of headaches. Once a patient begins Chiropractic care the spinal corrections they receive can prevent them suffering different types of headaches in the future.
How does chiropractic do this? Adjustments help align your musculoskeletal structure and remove the tension in your body that can lead to headaches.
Causes of Headaches
Headaches are a sign from your body that all is not well; there is an imbalance that needs to be addressed.
- Tension-type headaches: These are often related to stress, anxiety, or muscle tension in the head and neck.
- Migraines: A type of headache characterised by severe pain, often accompanied by other symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sound. Migraines are thought to involve a combination of genetic, environmental, and neurological factors.
- Sinus headaches: Caused by inflammation and pressure in the sinus cavities, usually due to a sinus infection or allergies.
- Cluster headaches: Severe headaches that occur in clusters, often around the same time each day. The exact cause is unknown, but they are believed to involve abnormal activity in the hypothalamus.
- Dehydration: Lack of proper hydration can lead to headaches. It’s important to drink enough water throughout the day.
- Eye strain: Prolonged use of digital screens, reading in poor light, or other activities that strain the eyes can cause headaches.
- Caffeine withdrawal: Regular consumption of caffeine followed by sudden cessation can trigger headaches.
- Lack of sleep: Insufficient or poor-quality sleep can contribute to headaches.
- Hormonal changes: Hormonal fluctuations, especially in women during menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause, can be associated with headaches.
- Certain foods and additives: Some people may experience headaches due to specific foods or food additives, like MSG (monosodium glutamate) or tyramine.
- Weather changes: Rapid changes in weather, such as a drop in barometric pressure, can trigger headaches in some individuals.
- Alcohol: Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to headaches, either during intoxication or as a hangover.
- Medication overuse: Repeated use of certain medications, especially pain relievers, can lead to rebound headaches.
It’s important to note that headaches can sometimes be a symptom of an underlying medical condition, so if someone experiences persistent or severe headaches, it is advisable to consult with a GP for a medical diagnosis and treatment plan.
Causes of Migraines
The exact cause of migraine headaches is not fully understood, but a number of triggers are believed to contribute to them. These include:
- hormonal changes (in women)
- food allergies (e.g. cheese, chocolate, egg, MSG)
- sleeping position and sleep apnea
These triggers, particularly stress, can lead to neck, back and shoulder tension, which in turn can lead to a migraine headache.
Identifying Migraine Headache Triggers
If you suffer from migraine headaches, it’s important that you try to identify your triggers. The best way to do this is to keep a diary and record what you ate and did leading up to the migraine headache. This will help you see any patterns. It won’t always be immediately clear what is causing your migraine headaches—it is often a process of elimination. You may even discover that several things are contributing to your migraine headaches.
Once you’ve identified your triggers, you need to learn how to avoid them. This may involve cutting out certain foods or changing certain behaviours based on whatever you discover helps. Chriopratic may be one of the solutions.
Contact Hawthorne Chiropractic
If you find that, despite your best efforts, you are still suffering from headaches, please contact our friendly staff at Hawthorne Chiropractic to arrange a suitable appointment time with Nicholas Armitage.
Nicholas is a friendly Chiropractor with years of experience adjusting people with various types of headaches and migraines.