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Did you ever think that your neck might be involved in your headaches? The constant brain sensitization from the involved neck area can be directly involved in your migraines!
Research has identified that the trigeminocervical complex in the brainstem is the source of irritation (sensitization) in migraine and headaches. Regardless of the type of headache, that specific area where the input from the trigeminal nerve and three upper cervical nerves is received is constantly irritated. Many triggers can spike your migraine, but the neck component is the strongest source of central sensitization. On the assessment, we can determine if your neck is involved and we can effectively treat it with Watson Headache® Approach Method.
What is migraine?
Migraine is a neurological disorder that is very often associated with nausea and vomiting, as well as increased sensitivity to light and sound. Migraine can be felt in different parts of the head and is felt as a throbbing, pulsating, or stabbing pain. It can last from 30 minutes up to 12 hours at a time. People who experience tension headaches, in contrast, can experience pressure or tightening sensation that can be made worse by activity and usually is not accompanied by nausea.
Cervicogenic headache (Originating from the cervical spine) is perceived in your head but have origins in your neck vertebrae, joints, muscles, discs, ligaments, or nerves.
The cause of your headache is a result of a disorder of the cervical spine and its components, where the pain-sensitive structures are located.
Alongside headache, you may also experience neck pain and stiffness, decreased range of motion, and muscle tension around your neck. Your headache more likely will start at the neck and travel up to the front of your head and behind your eye.
You may be thinking that to have a cervicogenic headache you must have experienced neck trauma, like a motor vehicle accident or a fall. You will be surprised to know that many people who experience cervicogenic headaches have never had any neck trauma or whiplash. They do however recall exercising poor posture during their work duties or at home that in a long term can cause cervicogenic headaches. Poor posture creates muscle tension that is so strong that will cause a vertebrae misalignment that is the direct cause of your headaches.
The constant stimulation of the affected area in your neck will be translated by your brain as Cervicogenic Headache.
Quite often we can reproduce your symptoms of headache by applying pressure to the upper cervical spine (C1- C2 and C3 vertebrae). This indicates that in fact, your neck is involved in your headaches.
According to Migraine Australia, tension headache is the most widespread headache disorder. It affects 36% of men and 42% of women (7 million Australians overall). It could be felt like a tight feeling on both sides of the head and quite often the onset is sudden.
People with tension-type headaches usually do not experience migraine symptoms, like a visual aura, nausea, vomiting, or blurry vision. They can however have sound or light sensitivity. The headache can last from 1 hour to even 5-7 days.
We now know that your headache is caused by a Sensitized Brainstem (link). The constant brain sensitization from your neck manifests as a pain in your head, that can be accompanied by light or sound sensitivity.
Using the latest and most effective, well-researched Method developed in Australia we can assess if your brain is sensitized and what part of your neck is involved without a doubt!
Cluster headache is regarded as the most painful headache of all other types of headaches. Regarded as a rare type of headache, the symptoms are the most severe and debilitating.
A person with a cluster headache can have 1- 2 episodes of severely painful cluster attacks that can last from 10-15 minutes up to 3 hours.
One person can have up to 8 attacks a day. If you are experiencing more attacks during spring or autumn, where the break between episodes is at least 6 months, that means you have episodic cluster headaches.
Chronic cluster headaches sufferers experience them in less than 3 months intervals.
Sinuses are air-filled spaces behind your nose, inside the forehead and cheekbones. These channels can get irritated by allergens in the air (dust-mites, mold, pollen, etc.). When the sinuses get inflamed, they swell and produce mucus that can block your sinuses.
The build-up of pressure in blocked sinuses will cause headaches that are difficult to relieve. You may also experience a runny nose, fullness in your ears, or even swelling in your face. If it’s an infection you will more likely have a fever and requires a GP consultation.
Many people suffer from chronic sinus irritation and inflammation that is causing or contributing to their headaches. During the winter season in Brisbane, the air becomes colder and many people experience regular sinus irritation during that time. Summer, on the other hand, can get very dry and hot which in turn can also dry our sinuses, causing irritation and inflammation. A lot of people with sinus issues are unable to breathe with their noses due to congestion and must breathe with their mouth which causes issues, like dry mouth, and may result in low oxygen concentration in the blood.
The treatment aims to reduce inflammation and swelling in your sinuses to clear the channels for better airflow. Some many antihistamines or decongestants are available over the counter, but it is not recommended to use for more than 3 days as it can increase your symptoms.
A very effective and natural way to help your sinuses to recover is a warm steam vaporizer. Read more about Sinus Headache and steam vaporizer.
Hormonal headache, referred to as a menstrual migraine affects females 2 days before the start of the cycle or 3 days after the cycle begins. Originally, it was believed that the hormonal headache was caused by abnormal hormone fluctuations before and during the menstrual cycle, but recent research has proven that the sensitized brainstem is responsible for it. If you have any dysfunction in your neck, this constantly sensitizes the brainstem as it is directly situated in your neck. During the menstrual cycle, your brainstem registers the normal hormonal drop but due to your brainstem sensitivity, that information is rewritten and heightened. This alerts the body with pain that manifests as migraines.
If you tried all available treatments for menstrual migraines, like triptans, hormone replacement therapy, birth control pills, anti-inflammatory drugs, dietary supplements, and you’ve visited multiple specialists to no avail, contact our clinic today!
The sensitized brainstem can be the cause of your menstrual headache or migraine if you have already explored many treatment options to no avail. With the use of the revolutionary neck assessment, we can determine if your sinus headache is connected to dysfunction of your neck
If you have recently experienced a car accident or fall on your head, you can be diagnosed with whiplash. The sudden and severe movement to your neck during the impact causes damage to many muscles, nerves, or ligaments in your neck. Whiplash can cause neck pain and surrounding muscle tension, reduced range of motion, and headaches.
Research has identified that the trigeminocervical complex in the brainstem is the source of irritation (sensitization) in migraine and headaches. Regardless of the type of headache, that specific area where the input from the trigeminal nerve and three upper cervical nerves is received is constantly irritated. Many triggers can spike your migraine, but the neck component is the strongest source of central sensitization. Due to moderate or severe injury to your neck during a whiplash, that process of sensitization takes place immediately after the injury. On the assessment, we can determine if your neck is involved and we can effectively treat it with Watson Headache® Approach Method.
If you have already visited many doctors and you’ve treated your child for viral infections and you have given your child anti-nausea medications that settled the symptoms but didn’t prevent the next attack, your child might be suffering from cycling vomiting syndrome.
If the doctor ruled out any other causes for severe nausea and vomiting, like appendicitis, irritable bowel syndrome, food allergies, viral infections, the sensitized brainstem can be responsible for CVS.
Cycling vomiting syndrome (CVS) is a rare disorder affecting children and adults. If your child is experiencing recurrent episodes of severe nausea and vomiting, your child could have CVS.
Cyclic Vomiting Symptoms
The symptoms usually last for a few hours or a couple of days.
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Physiotherapy and Headache Centre in Hamilton