Physical Therapy Treatment of Headaches
Headaches can be one of the most common sources of daily pain. There are many different types of headaches and our physical therapists can help identify the type and cause. The most commonly treated types of headaches are tension, migraine, and cluster. While most headaches are harmless and resolve on their own, individuals can suffer from chronic headaches that can affect activities of daily living.
Causes of Headaches
There are many causes of headaches, but often they may be linked to a neck or jaw problem, muscle tension, poor posture, fatigue, or stress.
Your physical therapist will conduct a thorough examination that includes a review of your health history. They will ask you questions and perform tests to determine the most likely cause of your headaches.
In addition, your physical therapist will:
- Perform tests of muscle strength and sensation
- Examine your posture when sitting, standing, and performing various tasks
- Measure the range of motion of your neck, shoulders, and other relevant parts of your body
- Use manual therapy to evaluate the mobility of the joints and muscles in your neck
If it is found that your headaches may be related to a physical impairment, your physical therapist will work with you to correct the potential root cause of your headaches, teach you how to manage and prevent them from coming back by:
- Improving neck and joint mobility
- Improving strength and muscle imbalances
- Improving posture
- Reducing stress
- Improving workstation ergonomics
- Manual Therapy - our physical therapists are trained in manual therapy utilizing their hands improve joint and soft tissue mobility.
- Dry Needling - to alleviate muscle tension and trigger points.
- Exercise - to improve muscle strength and endurance in order to reinforce postural changes.
- Education - how to manage symptoms on your own, live a balanced lifestyle and promote health habits.
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