Headaches & Chiropractic: What You Should Know About Headache Treatment Options
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Whether you experience it frequently or occasionally, you’re aware of that awful pain: the headache! Nothing is unbearable than tension headaches and migraines that stop you from living the life you want. However, you’re not alone.
91% of people in the U.S. take an off from work when they have a migraine attack, according to Migraine.com.
The good news is that headache treatment options do exist. But before jumping into any headache solution, you should know what exactly triggers your headache and how you can take control of this painful ailment.
Let’s dig deeper.
What Causes Headaches?
As a headache strikes, it’s a signal that something is going wrong inside the body. While some of the reasons for having a headache include improper diet, lack of sleep, eye strain, excessive screen exposure, poor lighting, hunger, infection, constipation, and voice pollution, headaches can also be associated to diabetes or other organic conditions.
If you suffer from frequent headaches but cannot relate to the above-mentioned causes, there are chances that your headache has a different cause – perhaps, muscle tension.
Chiropractic professionals link headaches with the epidemiology of nerves, blood vessels, and muscles. If any of these components are misaligned, the result is a headache that needs to be taken care of before further symptoms develop.
Here’s how a headache begins: emotional and physical stress leads to the misalignment of spinal bones. This misalignment disturbs the neck nerves causing a minor contraction in those vessels that supply blood to your brain. If this occurs, a person begins to feel the headache. If not treated at all, a headache continues to strike again and again.
Why You Should Get Serious about Your Headache
Have headaches started disrupting your daily activities? If yes, it’s time not to take your headaches for granted. You never know when a headache begins to harm your body in the form of brain tumor and other diseases.
If you notice the following signs, you should visit a doctor immediately:
- You’re having frequent headaches due to which you need to alleviate the pain by taking medications twice or thrice a week.
- You have a headache history. Suddenly, you notice a slight change in the pattern of your headaches.
Chiropractic versus Drugs: What’s a Better Headache Treatment Option?
While there are numerous headache remedies, medications are one of them. High-potency medicines are often used for numbing the nervous system so your brain doesn’t receive the pain signals generated due to a headache. Though this approach holds the highest level of convenience, you should be aware of the adverse effects caused by the prolonged use of such medications.
On the contrary, if misaligned spinal bones of your neck are the main cause of your headache, a wise headache treatment option is to seek chiropractic care.
Chiropractic doctors will identify the areas of your spine that lack proper mobility by noticing the spinal curves. They’ll also observe your posture and the ability to bend and turn your neck. Based on their analysis, they’ll recommend the chiropractic procedure that works well in terms of alleviating your headache.
How Chiropractic Care Can Help You with Tension Headaches or Migraines
Chiropractic care is an effective way in terms of managing and relieving pain occurred from tension headaches and migraines.
Possessing extensive training in chiropractic care, chiropractic doctors have immense knowledge about how and in what sense the spine disorders are related to medical problems that arise in other parts of the body. They use their expertise to help patients get rid of those problems that are the major cause of their headaches.
By delivering a natural and non-invasive therapy (also referred to as chiropractic adjustment), chiropractic procedures reduce the misalignment between the spine and the joints in the body, thereby resulting in the improved functionality of the nervous system and reduced inflammation. The improved spinal health enables reduced pain caused by tension headaches and migraines.
In the first session, the chiropractor will examine your medical conditions with the help of MRI test or an x-ray. Based on your findings, your chiropractic doctor will suggest a procedure that is right for you. If the need persists, he may also co-treat your headache with physical therapists, massage therapists, or other physicians.
To naturally alleviate the pain caused by headaches, a chiropractic doctor may also give you some nutritional advice (for instance, the intake of vitamins such as B complex). He’ll also suggest you about adapting a correct posture and relaxation techniques that reduce the recurring tension and irritation in your neck muscles leading to headaches.
Wondering how long will it take for a headache to go away?
This entirely depends from one person to the other. Spinal manipulations performed by chiropractic doctors have a diverse effect on each individual. Therefore, some patients are able to respond quickly to chiropractic care while others see improvements after a few weeks.
Repeated visits to your chiropractor can help strengthen and restrain the muscles that are supporting your spine, and thus, may lead to fewer headaches.
What to Do Before Visiting a Chiropractic Doctor
Right from the first consultation, a chiropractor will be interested in knowing the basic details about your headache. Therefore, once you’ve decided to let a chiropractor examine the real cause of your headache and treat it accordingly, you should prepare yourself to get the most from chiropractic care.
Before heading to the chiropractor, don’t forget to keep a journal that comprises of everything related to the occurrence of your headaches. In the journal, write down the following details:
- How many times of the week each headache occurs
- The level of intensity of a headache
- The task you were carrying out before a headache interfered
- The noticeable symptoms when you feel the pain
- Your major stresses or life changes
- Your family history (e.g. Does any of your parents suffer from the same frequency of headaches?)
- The medications, dietary supplements, and vitamins you regularly take (including the exact dosage)
- Any questions you want to ask the chiropractor
Now what? You’re ready to take an appointment with the chiropractor in your city. Start the treatment right away and say good-bye to headaches!