Headaches and how to relieve them

Headaches and how to relieve them

This month we will be looking into headaches, specifically tension type headaches, what causes tension headaches and ways to relieve it.

Tension-type headache is the most common headache disorder. Tension headaches are often caused by musculoskeletal tightness through the neck and shoulders that contributes to the pain.

Symptoms may include:

  • Dull and persistent pain felt on both sides of the head.
  • Constant tightness and compression sensation around the head.
  • Tight muscles around the neck and shoulders.
  • Decreased movement through the neck due to stiffness and tightness.
  • So what triggers a tension-type headache?
  • Excessive muscle contraction (e.g frowning or clenching your jaw)
  • Poor posture at work, home and when driving
  • Poor quality pillow used for sleeping
  • Looking down at your phone or reading books for a prolonged periods
  • Stress, anxiety, fatigue

What can you do to decrease the headache?

  • Take time away from stress
  • Ensure you have a work, life and leisure balance.
  • Neck stretches
  • Self-releases through your neck and shoulders using a spikey ball or foam roller.
  • Stretching out the front of your chest to improve posture.
  • Have an ergonomic assessment checked at work to see if you are set up correctly at your desk.
  • Heat pack on the shoulders and neck.

Here are a few exercises that you can do to help relieve the symptoms:

Self-release through the sub-occipital muscles

1. Thumb position at the base of your skull

2. Lie on the floor with the weight of your head going into your thumbs.

Spikey ball neck

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Side neck stretch

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Diagonal neck stretch

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Open up chest with a pec stretch on the foam roller

If you are still experiencing the headaches and haven’t been able to relieve the symptoms book an appointment with us to help you be pain free.

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