One of the best things that we do here in our office is to treat headaches. So many people leave our office thanking us 3 or 4 times just to prove a point, “headaches are awful!” However, when a headache patient comes into our office they
are all treated differently. This is because there are several different kinds of headache that need different treatments:
- Migraine with auras
These headaches come in several different forms. It is also most often related to stress and clenching of muscles of the jaw, neck and shoulder muscles. It can also manifest from cervical, thoracic and jaw mechanical dysfunction (subluxation). This then leads to corresponding muscular problems. The most effective treatment for this condition is to treat the spinal dysfunction through a specific chiropractic adjustment along with the muscular aspects of the headache. This can lead to a shorter treatment plan and quicker relief.
The best way to avoid this kind of headache is to have preventative maintenance chiropractic care this can help relieve the tension before it becomes a problem. The other preventative method would be to find a way to deal with the stress that is causing the tension in the first place. Stress comes from a fight or flight response, so exercising is the best method for this response. Another response would be to use yoga, meditation or prayer to allow for your body to relax and take all of your stressful thoughts out of your head for a period of time.
Migraine-Migraine with auras Headache:
There are several different types of migraine headaches, and they can come from several different sources. There are several nutritional and hormonal aspects to migraines that have to be delineated before a proper treatment plan is implemented. We have to make sure we know the history of the migraine and the type and nature of the migraine before we conduct a treatment. For instance, migraines that started occurring after a blow to the head would be treated differently than migraines that start after a pregnancy or only occurs during menses. Once that is considered, an analysis of efficacy of treatment will be determined. Chiropractic is usually very effective along with nutrition and cranial work to help stimulate the trigeminal nerve.
What is cranial work? Dr. Bridget Conway uses an SOT form of cranial sacral method that analyzes a very subtle movement of the cranial vault. When the cranial vault is not moving properly the cerebral spinal fluid is not drained properly, and this keeps inflammatory markers along the dura of the brain causing pain. The dura is the only part of the brain that is innervated for pain. Dr. Bridget Conway then uses the hard and soft pallet to move different parts of the cranial vault. This can be very temporarily painful, but this is also VERY effective for almost all types of headaches!
This headache stems from sinus congestion caused by allergies or a sinus infection. A surprising aspect of these types of headaches is that they are sometimes related to a chronic low-grade hypersensitivity or allergy that cannot be picked up by a normal allergy test. There are tests that we can use to determine this aspect, but a food elimination program is another method for dealing with a hypersensitivity or allergy.
Cranial work and cervical adjustments can also help the sinuses drain taking pressure off of the sinuses. This is very effective for this type of headache along with lymphatic drainage of the post. and ant. chains of the cervical lymph nodes, the auricular chain, and the tonsilar chain of lymph nodes.
This type of headache has a presentation the usually starts in the back of the head and wraps around the head along and above the ears. This can manifest along with a tension headache. This type of headache stems from a lack of mechanical function (subluxation) of the upper cervical area (right below the skull on the neck). This is a very common headache, but luckily chiropractic care is VERY effective at treating this type of headache. Quite often this can be helped in the first visit. However, the subluxations that have been with the patient for quite a long time might need muscle work that goes along with the chiropractic adjustment.
Each and every one of these headaches will be analyzed individually and cared for individually. Analysis for medical co-management will also be considered.
If you are dealing with headaches, then please allow yourself some relief by calling Cannon Pointe Chiropractic at 507-645-8000. If you would also like to hear more about several health-related topics please check out our other blogs!