The International Headache Society, yes there really is one… has identified 14 different types and sub classifications of headaches, making diagnosing their cause and treatment a real “headache” for us physiotherapists!
At Back In Action UK we often treat patients who have headaches associated with neck pain and stiffness which are known as “Cervicogenic Headaches”. It has been estimated that 47% of the global population are believed to suffer from headaches and 15-20% of these are cervicogenic in nature.
These headaches are usually 1 sided and start at the back of the head and neck and travel to the front- and often do not respond to medications-sounding familiar? The neck pain may start before or at the same time as the headache and be aggravated by specific neck movements or postures. They are thought to be caused by a dysfunction in the upper neck (cervical spine) with referral of pain from either bony structures or soft tissues in the neck.
At Back in Action UK we always take a thorough history and clinical examination to make an accurate diagnosis and address individual impairments upon which we can focus our treatment in order to help relieve the symptoms. Likely issues which may lead to these types of headaches and will need addressing include forward head postures (such as from sitting poorly at your desk) causing stress on the upper part of the neck, tightness of the neck muscles-leading to painful trigger points, altered movement patterns (the way you move your neck) and weakness/ poor endurance of an important muscle group in the neck called the deep neck flexor muscles.
If you suffer from headaches come and have a physio assessment to see if we can help or for more information contact me firstname.lastname@example.org
Kenny Butler find me on Google+.