Headaches can come from a variety of sources. Research indicates that headaches originating from the neck and jaw joints muscles are most effectively relieved with a combination of hands-on treatment, education regarding potential aggravating postures (including workplace setup), and specific exercises to reduce re-occurrence of the headache.
The common symptoms of neck and jaw types of headaches include:
- a dull constant ache,
- often one-sided,
- gradually developing over a day or longer, and or
- usually located either at the side of the head, behind the eyes or as a band sensation around your head.
Treatment includes assessing, treating and unloading the upper neck using a combination of soft tissue releases joint mobilisation, specific strengthening of the neck muscles posture education and ergonomics advice.
As part of the overall Peak Performance Physiotherapy approach to headaches a number of other areas need to be included in the initial assessment of the neck. Often we find that treatment has only been in the area of the upper neck giving only short-term relief. It is important to consider the contribution of surrounding joints and muscles in the development of neck pain and headaches. In particular, stiff restricted ribs, a stiff middle back or altered shoulder movements/restrictions can all contribute to the neck overcompensating around the upper neck and this has the potential for continuing to create neck based headaches.
So if you are looking for a comprehensive and dynamic approach to assessment and treatment of your ongoing headaches then give us a call and discuss whether we can assist you in a long-term strategy to relieve and manage your pain and discomfort.