Physiotherapy for Migraine & Headache Relief

Can a Physiotherapist Help My Headache?

Our trained physiotherapists will assess the possible causes of your headache pain. These causes may include:

  • Poor posture
  • Neck and upper back stiffness
  • Muscle imbalances
  • Muscle weakness
  • Muscle tightness
  • Previous neck trauma (e.g. whiplash)
  • Inappropriate desk setup
  • An inappropriate pillow or sleeping postures
  • Sedentary lifestyle comprising excessive slouching
  • Bending forwards or shoulders forwards activities
  • Stress
  • Dehydration

Once the reason for your headache pain is pinpointed, your physiotherapist will instigate migraine physiotherapy treatment to relieve the symptoms and treat the origin of the pain. This tension headache treatment usually includes the gentle manual mobilization of the facet joints of your upper neck and back. The photos on this page demonstrate the technique for headache physiotherapy.

Does Physiotherapy Provide Relief for Headaches?

Yes, absolutely! In fact, physiotherapy is one of the most effective treatments for headaches and migraines.

Headache occurs when pain is referred from your neck structures following damage from prolonged use, incorrect posture, or from traumatic injury. The force placed on the nerves, ligaments, joints, and muscles in your neck causes stress and pain can build up suddenly or gradually over time, leading to a headache.

Different types of Headaches and Locations

Different kinds of headaches can cause pain in various places around your head. To help you identify which type of headache you are experiencing, we have highlighted the top three most common types of headaches:

Cervicogenic headache

Pain may be felt in the head, jaw, forehead, ears or back of the eyes, and is referred typically from the top three-neck vertebra. Usually, patients are between the ages of 20-60 years old, but it can occur at any age. Manual treatment is an effective form of headache physiotherapy. Symptoms can include neck pain and stiffness in the morning and some nausea and dizziness may occur. Manual therapy at the base of your skull and through the neck region will help with headache suffers.

What Causes a Cervicogenic Headache?

  • Poor posture (screentime, slouching, working at your computer, etc)
  • Whiplash
  • Heavy lifting activities

Tension Headaches

A Tension headache affects your entire head and often feels like a tight band wrapped around it. Tension headaches happen when the muscles in your head and neck contract, and they usually last a few hours to a couple of days. They can be mistaken for migraines, and the pressure can extend to the back of your neck and cause tenderness in the forehead.

What Causes a Tension Headache?

  • Sickness (Cold or Flu)
  • Hunger
  • Fatigue
  • Caffeine Withdrawal
  • Head Trauma
  • Staring at a computer for too long
  • Using too much medication

Migraine Headache

Migraine pain will only reside on either the left or right side of your head. Rarely will a migraine wrap around your whole head. This one-sided headache is considered a disorder and can reoccur until treated. Symptoms often include throbbing, nausea, noise, and light sensitivities, and difficulty focusing. Many contributing factors trigger this disorder; the most common is a decrease in serotonin levels.

What Causes a Migraine?

  • Loud noises
  • Bright or flashing lights
  • Food sensitives
  • Changes in weather condition
  • Hormonal changes
  • Under eating
  • Dehydration
  • Hormonal change

If you have been suffering from chronic headaches, physiotherapy may be the right treatment for you. Take your life back today and reach out to us for an assessment by calling us at 604-332-4487 or by booking an appointment online.

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“Thanks to Matt at Healthx I have been able to get back to the track the fastest. IMS treatments have helped heal me incredibly. After all the doctors, physiotherapists and chiropractors, Matt is by far the most helpful.”

Miranda Gregory, Langley Mustangs Track & Field

Physiotherapy Langley

Langley’s leading physiotherapy clinic for advanced physical therapy services and treatments.