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Chiropractic Care and Headaches

person sitting at a table with a headacheOne of the most common complaints we see often in the practice are headaches.

In fact, the Journal of Headache and Pain found, “From 357 publications, the vast majority from high-income countries, the estimated global prevalence of active headache disorder was 52.0%.”

In addition, the study showed that about 15.8% of the world’s population have a headache every single day. For those keeping score, that’s an estimated 1.24 billion active headaches right now worldwide. By estimation, that means there are upwards of 53 million Americans struggling with headaches each day.

Headaches can come from many sources and have a myriad of symptoms and presentations. As such, there are many headache classifications, with the most common being migraines and tension headaches.

Do you find that more often than you’d like you’re dealing with frequent or constant headaches? Do you know the type of headache you suffer from? Knowing the type of headache you have can greatly assist you in finding the help you need. Here are some facts on each headache type.

  • Tension Headache: Dull and achy pain, may be described as a tight band or squeezing pain around the head. Usually starts in the upper neck or back, and as the tension increases it leads to pain in the head. It’s often associated with tension in shoulders, neck, and jaw, and triggers include but are not limited to the following: stress, anxiety, history of neck strain/sprain, poor posture, lack of sleep, recent car accident or fall.
  • Migraine Headache: May cause severe throbbing pain or a pulsing and can cause nausea, vomiting, and light or sound sensitivities. Are usually one sided but can be on both sides of the head. Sometimes, they worsen with physical activity. A migraine will often start with a visual aura. Aura’s differ in presentation including but not limited to: small or large light rings, blurry vision, floaters, flashing lights, or spots.

Chiropractic Care and Headaches

Research has shown that treatment of the head, neck and spine with chiropractic care can be effective at providing headache relief. When the head, neck and spine do not move or function properly it can cause unnecessary muscle tension. Left untreated, this muscle tension can build and then may lead to headaches. If you struggle with frequent or chronic headaches or know someone else who does, we want you (and them!) to know about the benefits of chiropractic care. Call us today to book a visit or ask any questions that you have!

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  1. Stovner, L.J., Hagen, K., Linde, M. et al. The global prevalence of headache: an update, with analysis of the influences of methodological factors on prevalence estimates. J Headache Pain 23, 34 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1186/s10194-022-01402-2
  2. Bryans R, Descarreaux M, Duranleau M, et al. Evidence-based guidelines for the chiropractic treatment of adults with headache. J Manipulative Physiol Ther 2011; 34: 274-89.

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