The chances are that you’ve suffered from a headache within the past year (50% of us have according to World Health Organisation statistics). We all occasionally suffer from one-off headaches and can normally pinpoint the reason for them – stress, lack of sleep, over-work, dehydration etc.
Even if you don’t know why they’ve occurred, they’re not normally a big problem. Time, water and/or pain killers resolve things pretty quickly.
But are you one of those that struggles with regular headaches?
Be they migraines, cluster headaches or tension-type headaches, they can be a real burden and are often hard to manage.
A slightly different approach
There’s a group of headaches that respond really well to treatment by an osteopath. They’re called ‘cervicogenic headaches’ which basically means headaches caused by problems with the neck. In my experience, the upper back is also often involved.
These are often – but not always – headaches that run over one side of the head or feel like they’re focused at the back of the head across one or both sides.
Long hours at your computer?
A lack of movement in the joints of the neck or tightness in the muscles surrounding the neck and stiffness in the upper back can set up these headaches. Other things that can cause them are accidents and injuries, posture and lack of exercise.
But the most common cause in my experience is the demands of office-based work – the sitting, the keyboard and screen position, the commute.
Time to loosen up
Osteopaths don’t treat conditions as such, but this is one of my favourite things to treat as people respond so well. Once we are sure of what’s causing your headache, and are happy that is coming from the upper back and neck, then a good loosening of those tight muscles and stiff joints will often see a rapid easing of those headaches that have blighted your daily life.
Keep it up
Once you’re moving again, then it’s a case of keeping you moving. After all, the demands of work are relatively fixed (although some advice re desk set up etc. is often invaluable).
But there’s a lot that you’ll be able to do to help yourself in terms of specific and focused stretches to keep that neck and upper back moving. Just ask me, if you’d like some advice.
So don’t put up with regular headaches especially if you feel that they’re coming from the neck or upper back. If you’re unsure, come and see us for a free 15 minute consultation. We can quickly evaluate the neck and guide you as to whether we may be able to help.