A lot of people suffer from different types of headaches. They are diagnosed with migraines, cluster headaches, tension headaches and the list goes on. The problem is they are diagnosed by the type of symptoms, not the actual cause. It is found that the actual cause of around 80% of
headaches stems from dysfunction in the neck. So the actual real type of headache is what is called cervicogenic headache.
The many types of headaches would be more properly treated if they were actually diagnosed by cause, not just symptoms. Cervicogenic headaches can mimic migraine, tension, and cluster headaches.
When a doctor identifies the spinal dysfunction in the neck that is actually the cause of the cervicogenic headache, the success in treatment is significant. Chiropractors are the specialists that address the cause of problems, including headaches. An examination that includes range of motion, orthopedic tests, neurologic tests, x-rays or MRI, and surface EMG can determine the severity. Are there subluxations? Are there bulging or herniated discs? Are there compressed nerves?
A thorough exam by a chiropractor helps detect and correct the cause. Using gentle chiropractic techniques removes the dysfunction that leads to the headache. All this without the use of dangerous medications that at best might give temporary relief but lead to many harmful side effects. Which would you prefer? Popping pills that can cause more health issues or correcting the cause of your headaches?
New research shows spinal mobilization is more effective than massage therapy in the treatment of cervicogenic headache: Mobilization versus massage therapy in the treatment of cervicogenic headache: a clinical study
36 individuals with cervicogenic headache were randomly placed into 1 of 2 groups: treatment with upper cervical spinal mobilization or massage of the neck muscles. All patients were assigned various neck exercises and stretching 2 times per week for 6 weeks.
All patients in the study experienced a reduction in intensity, frequency and duration of cervicogenic headache. Neck disability and range of motion were also improved. In all categories except the neck disability, the spinal mobilization group showed a significant improvement over the massage group. The findings demonstrate mobilization offers enhanced treatment of cervicogenic headache.
Massage helps relieve tension in the muscles that can lead to headaches but the muscle tension itself is a result of the underlying subluxations. Chiropractic corrects those subluxations and therefore the symptoms accompanying them including the muscle tension and headaches.
Dr. Russell Brokstein, Freehold chiropractor and owner of Hometown Family Wellness Center has been helping patients with cervicogenic headache for over 15 years. Dr. Russell does a thorough headache evaluation to find the cause of your headache so he can properly treat you and give you your life back. Treatment includes spinal adjustments to correct the subluxations as well as therapeutic stretching, trigger point therapy and therapeutic exercise to strengthen and stabilize the area. Listen to one of our patients talk about results of treatment:
If you know anybody with cervicogenic headache, share this blog post with them!