Are you a migraine or a headache sufferer?

The facts around Migraine are:

  • 8 million UK sufferers
  • Costs the UK £2.25 billion each year
  • 25 million work days are lost each year
  • NHS spends £250 million on all headaches
  • Less than 12p per sufferer is spent on migraine research
  • 3 in 5 people lack support and understanding from their employer

All our practitioners treat a wide variety of conditions here at Park View Acupuncture and Chiropractic Clinic. However, one of our routine questions during the case history is: “Do you get headaches?” and a very common answer is: “No more than everyone else” or words to that effect. How often does ‘everyone else’ get headaches? A lot of people don’t get headaches at all, except when dehydrated after a little too much alcohol (yes, the good old hangover), yet a lot of people think that monthly, weekly or even daily headaches are normal!

Headaches are NOT NORMAL and neither are Migraines. Like just about every type of pain they are there to tell you that something is wrong. Whereas your headache may not be life threatening it can certainly make you tired, irritable and stop you from enjoying life to the full.

Frequently a contributing factor to the pain is the neck giving rise to the term ‘cervicogenic headaches’ (headaches arising from the neck) although sometimes they may be mislabelled as ‘stress headaches’. However, we find that migraines also respond well to neck treatment. You don’t have to have neck pain, or even have noticed any restriction in neck movement, but some of the joints in the neck can still be stiff and jammed. The offending structures tend to be at the top of your neck and it may be tender to touch. Digging you finger into the tender area may temporarily relieve or aggravate the pain. The stiffness may have happened through jarring your neck, bumping your head, falls or stumbles, traffic accidents and so on. It can come through poor posture, extensive driving or sitting at a desk in front of the computer, badly performed exercises at home, in the gym or in the swimming pool etc. The neck is essentially a flexible rod balancing your head above your torso. An average head weighs 11lb or 5 kg. If you try balancing an 11lb weight on top of an 8-inch flexible rod for 14 to 16 hours a day then you will understand the strain the neck is under!

Our approach is holistic, i.e. treating you as a whole person, not just your symptoms. Therefore you can expect to examine more than your sore neck and look at you from top to toe. This way we often achieve results beyond our patients’ initial expectations.

Releasing the stiff neck joints can give some remarkable results dramatically reducing or even eliminating the head pains. Often people realise that their neck was stiff after all. The duration of the stiffness, your injury history, permanent ‘wear and tear’ damage and your lifestyle will, of course, have a bearing on the amount of treatment required and over what period. The best long-term results are achieved by combining treatment with exercises and advice on how to minimise the chance of recurrence. Over time persistent bad habits, poor posture or unavoidable tasks at work or at home may recreate some of the stiffness. This is when regular maintenance treatment comes in to its own. A treatment every 2 to 4 months can often stop the headaches from recurring. If you or any of your friends and family suffer from headaches or migraines there is a good chance that we can provide relief. Just call us to schedule a free assessment or a new patient appointment, and if the pain is indeed likely to come from your neck treatment could get underway within a few days.

Of course, we cannot guarantee success but as one of my tutors used to say:”Unless you have a go you will never ever know”.

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