08 Apr 2022
What To Do About Headaches and MigrainesHeadaches are annoying, luckily our experienced physiotherapists are here to help! Whether you’re getting headaches in the morning, throughout the day, or right before bedtime, it can be distressing and debilitating. Did you know that approximately 75% of the adult population has had at least one headache within the last year? That’s a lot of headaches! So, what can you do when you get one? Physiotherapy for headaches and migraines can be helpful! Outlined below are 7 suggestions to help ease that terrible headache pain you are experiencing.
What are the most common types of headaches?There are more than 150 types of headaches. All headaches can cause some sort of pain, ache, or throb in different parts of your head. The most common types are tension headaches, cluster headaches, neck (cervicogenic) headaches, and migraines. Let’s take a closer look at each of these types! Tension headaches are usually felt on both sides of the head. It’s like a band was placed around your head that keeps tightening, causing a dull pain feeling. You may get this type of headache when you are experiencing emotional and/or physical stress in your life. It can last around 30 minutes or even up to 7 days but, continuing your daily activities should not make the pain worse. Cluster headaches are abrupt and typically are felt only on one side of the head. It often happens in groups, i.e., back-to-back bouts that can last around 30-60 minutes. Many people consider this headache to be the most painful. It can cause red and watery eyes due to the intense pain coming from behind and around the eye area. While experiencing cluster headaches, it is common to feel nausea and sensitivity to light and sound. Cluster headaches are 5x more common in men than women. Cervicogenic headaches (also known as neck headaches) are felt at the bottom of the skull or around the upper neck area, where you may also experience stiffness of the neck. It can be difficult to distinguish between cervicogenic headaches, tension headaches, or even migraines, as the pain experienced is similar. Cervicogenic headaches can be caused by underlying medical conditions or from injury, such as a whiplash following a motor vehicle accident. Fortunately, physiotherapists are here to help you relieve this type of headache! Migraines are typically felt on one side of the head and can be quite severe, causing you to experience an intense throbbing or pounding headache. Sometimes the pain is so intense that it will interfere with normal everyday activities. While having a migraine, you may experience nausea, extreme fatigue, vomiting, dizziness, and sensitivity to light, sound, and smells. Some of these symptoms may also worsen with physical activity. Migraines are 3x more common in women than men.
How can I relieve headache pain?Depending on the type of headache, here are 7 things you can do to lessen the pain:
- Visit a physiotherapist
- Relax in a dark and quiet room
- Take a warm shower or apply a hot/cold pack
- Get a good night’s sleep
- Manage your stress
- Be consistent with your meals and stay hydrated
- Exercise regularly
What can I do if these tips don’t work?If these 7 suggestions do not ease the headache pain you are experiencing, over-the-counter medications such as: Tylenol, Advil, or Motrin may help to reduce symptoms. Alternatively, you can contact your family physician for prescribed medication if your headaches are more frequent and severe. At Boost Physiotherapy, our physiotherapists are ready to help you with any pain you are experiencing. If you have any further questions about how physio can help with your headaches and migraines, book an appointment online or visit us at our south edmonton physiotherapy or stony plain physiotherapy clinic. We proudly serve the millwoods, spruce grove, south Edmonton neighborhoods! Our team of highly trained physiotherapists will be happy to assist you in any way!
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