Headaches

DIFFERENT TYPES OF HEADACHE

Many people have occasional headaches, but frequent headaches that affect your ability to sleep or get on with
your day can be disabling. Common types of headaches are tension, migraine and cervicogenic headaches. Tension-type headaches commonly present as band-like tension around the head, whereas migraine headaches usually result in pain on one side of the head and are commonly accompanied by nausea and sensitivity to light and sound. With cervicogenic headaches the neck is the source of the problem but the pain is perceived in one or more areas of the head and/or face.

The causes of headaches are not always well understood but a family history of headaches, neck stiffness and stress are common factors.

Did you know?

A Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) is highly trained to diagnose the causes of back pain and provide hands-on treatment that works. Ignoring back pain doesn’t make it go away. In fact, it can make it worse. It’s important to treat not just the symptoms, but also the cause.

If back pain is affecting your ability to get through the day and keeping you away from your favorite activities, consider chiropractic care. A chiropractor will assess your symptoms, diagnose your condition, and recommend a treatment plan to put you on the road to recovery. Your chiropractor can also provide expert advice to help you prevent pain and injury from recurring.

GETTING BACK IN ACTION

Chiropractors are specialists in adjustment of the vertebrae of the spine and other joints of the body. Adjustment helps relieve pain and restore normal movement – so you can enjoy your everyday activities again as quickly as possible. Complications are rare and side effects such as temporary soreness are usually minor.

Chiropractors acquire their skills through an intensive four-year, full-time course of study after three years of university education.

PATIENTS PLAY A ROLE

The success of any treatment relies on patients playing an active role. Your chiropractor will recommend a course of treatment specific to you that may include life and work style changes, adjustment and mobilization of the joints, muscle release techniques, muscle stimulation, and therapeutic exercises. For example, you may be advised to make nutritional changes, have an eye examination or use a glare-free computer screen.

WHEN SHOULD I CONSIDER CHIROPRACTIC CARE?

It’s important to take headaches seriously. Consider consulting a chiropractor if you often have headaches, if you frequently take a pain reliever for your headaches, if your headache pattern changes, or if your headaches are getting worse. Seek prompt attention if your headache is sudden and severe, follows a head injury or is accompanied by fever, stiff neck, weakness, numbness or difficulty speaking.

EVIDENCE-BASED

Chiropractors are regulated health professionals and members of your health care team. Chiropractic care has been researched extensively. Your chiropractor is well-trained to determine if your problem will respond to chiropractic care or if you require referral to another health care professional.

LENGTH OF CARE

In some cases, treatment may begin on the first visit. Length of treatment will vary for each person, but many patients will begin to feel better after a few visits. Certain types of headaches may require periodic care.

A HEALING PARTNERSHIP

Your chiropractor will work with you to establish goals to measure your progress. Chiropractors are trained to prescribe therapeutic exercise, provide nutritional counselling and recommend rehabilitation and injury prevention strategies to help you participate in your care.

WHAT TO EXPECT ON A FIRST VISIT

If you are visiting a chiropractor for the first time, expect to provide a health history. This may include asking you about any illnesses, past surgeries, medications and other health issues. The chiropractor will ask you about your pain and conduct a physical examination to assess and diagnose the problem. Sometimes x-rays may be required.

Your chiropractor will explain the findings of the assessment to you and discuss the treatment recommendations, ensuring your consent to treatment is informed and your questions are answered.

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