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Headaches

 Everyone suffers with headaches from time to time, but if you get recurrent headaches they can be very incapacitating and life limiting.

What types of headache are there?

There are many different types of headache but the most common are:

  • tension
  • cluster
  • migraine
  • cervicogenic (referred from the neck)

The first thing we would discuss with anyone coming to see us for headache issues, is where the headaches are located.  The pain pattern will give us a big clue as to the type of headache you are suffering from, the cause of the pain and where we would need to treat in order to help the pain and to stop them from coming back.

What can The StoneHouse Clinic do to help my headaches?

We see great results for people suffering with headaches all the time, and what we aim for is to stop the headaches coming back for good.  Once we have found where your headaches are coming from, we have lots of different methods of treating them and will discuss with you what we think would get the best results, and what you are comfortable with.    Each person is different and will have their own unique set of circumstances contributing to their headaches, but the treatment and advice could include:

  • Acupuncture / dry needling
  • LASER
  • Bespoke soft tissue massage
  • Taping to support your posture or help relieve overloaded muscles
  • Postural checks, advice and correction
  • Specific stretching
  • Advice on things you can do to help yourself every day

 

What can I do to help my headache?

Painkillers should help most headaches in the short term, but we all know there are medical risks associated with taking them in the longer term.

Keep hydrated. Make sure you drink enough fluids during the day as being dehydrated can lead to headaches.

You may find it useful to keep a pain diary showing when the headache came on and you may find that you see a pattern.  For example, does the headache come on after you have had a big deadline at work and you feel stressed, does it come on after a long car journey which may indicate the way you are sitting or your overall posture might be involved.  Is your neck sore or stiff when you get the headache?  Bring your diary with you to your appointment, and we can work through it together if you can't identify a strong pattern.

If your headaches come on after sitting at a desk or on your laptop, there is a strong chance that your posture and ergonomics will need to be addressed.  Putting a post it note on the screen with just a little note saying 'POSTURE!' can be just as effective as other methods.  When you see it, look at how you are sitting - are you slumped forward, are your shoulders raised, is your head pointing downwards - this posture could all be contributing towards your headache.

Another small change that can make a huge difference is to try and move every 20-30 minutes, even if it is for 30 seconds to get a glass of water or get something from a printer.  Changing postures allows blood floow to move around our tissues and kick-start low level feel-good chemical releases.

If you sit at a desk all day try this exercise..you will need a small towel:

Sit in a terribly slumped position (like you might if you were in a 2 hour meeting you have lost interest in).  Let your shoulders roll forward and move your head forward even more.  Allow your back to be rounded.  NOW..sit back into the chair and place a rolled up towel in the small of your back, with your bottom and shoulder blades in contact with the backrest.  Instantly, your chest will face forward instead of downwards, your shoulders will roll back and your head will be in a much more neutral position.   Notice how you feel sitting in this position - you should feel more comfortable and your body will be working much more efficiently.

Words by: John Lyttle, Physiotherapist at The StoneHoue Clinic

If you would like to book an appointment with any of our team to help your headache or have any queries at all then please let us know using the contact details found by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ellie West is an Osteopath treating people in the Corsham, Chippenham and Bath areas here at The StoneHouse Clinic in the Hartham Park estate just outside Corsham (between Bath and Chippenham.)

 

 

   

 

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