Headaches and Physical Therapy


“Pain of any type that occurs in any part of the head is called a headache. There are many different types of headaches, with just as many causes. The International Headache Society describes several different categories of headache: tension-type, migraine and cluster, secondary headaches from an underlying condition, such as fever, infectious disease, sinus disorder, or in rare cases, a tumor or more serious illness, cranial neuralgias, facial pain, and other headaches” From MoveForward PT

In most situations, headaches tend to go away on their own. If you experience strong, recurring headaches that interfere with daily life, a physical therapist may be able to help. A physical therapist will help you identify the type of headache you are having, and if it is a tension-type, provide methods to alleviate the pain.


Tension-type Headaches

If you have a tension-type headache, you will notice pain that starts at the back of your head to the top of your head and eyes. Pain throughout the cheeks by the jaw may occur, known as temporomandibular joint dysfunction. Tension-type headaches are the most common seen in adults. Different body positions can make these headaches more or less painful.

Causes of these headaches include:

-Neck or jaw problems

-Poor posture

-Fatigue

-Stress

-Injury or arthritis in neck, head or jaw


What a Physical Therapist Can Do:

To find the cause of your headaches, a physical therapist will review your health history with a complete exam.

They will:

-Ask about prior neck, head or jaw injuries

-Find pain areas with a body diagram

-Test for muscle strength and sensation

-Evaluate posture in different positions and actions

-Evaluate range of motion in shoulders and neck and related areas

-Find joint and muscle mobility in neck through manual therapy


In the case of a tension-type headache, you will work with your physical therapist to create a care plan. In the case of a different type of headache, you may be referred to a different health care professional.

Your physical therapist will show you ways to prevent headache causes with posture and lifestyle changes. These include Manual Therapy, exercises, and posture improvement. Manual therapy will help with mobility of the neck through increasing neck movement, stretching neck muscles, and alleviating pain. Exercises will improve posture by increasing muscle strength. Posture improvement methods include using a headset as a phone, making computer screen at eye level, finding a good desk chair, and changing computer mouse location.

Source: moveforwardpt.com

 

HEADACHES & PHYSICAL THERAPY

GARDENING TIPS

DISEASE PREVENTION

AGE WELL TIPS

ARTHRITIS

BACK PAIN

BODY MECHANICS

CARPAL TUNNEL

DIABETIC NEUROPATHY

FALL PREVENTION

HEART HEALTH

KNEE REPLACEMENT

OSTEOPOROSIS

PARKINSONS

ROTATOR CUFF

STROKE