Headache is one of the most common health conditions affecting the population and it is likely that almost all people will suffer a headache at some time during their lives. There are different types of headaches and many different causes. Some common triggers for headache include dehydration, stress, muscle tension, neck problems, poor posture, poor diet or food sensitivities, jaw problems or visual issues.
While a headache generally only involves pain a migraine includes additional symptoms which may include nausea and vomiting, sensitivity to light, sound, smell or touch, changes in vision, and pins and needles in the arm or face. The pain associated with a migraine is severe and often throbbing in nature and generally occurs on one side of the head. Migraine attacks are often triggered by factors such as menstrual cycle changes, certain foods, lack of sleep, or emotions such as stress or excitement.
Serious underlying disorders such as brain tumours, infection or vascular issues are rarely the cause of headache but persistent headache should always be investigated. Given the many different possible causes of headache an accurate diagnosis is essential for proper management or referral to another health professional if warranted.
The chiropractors at Southern Region Chiropractic Mittagong and Goulburn first focus on diagnosing the cause of a patient’s headache in order to determine the best evidence-based treatment approach. This diagnosis is made after the chiropractor has taken a detailed history and performed a thorough examination. Treatment may include joint mobilisation or manipulation, soft tissue release, dry needling, advice on pain relieving methods, discussion about headache or migraine triggers, ergonomic and activity modification advice, and the prescription of home exercises. The use of these techniques varies depending on the patient’s age, health and their personal preferences.