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Chronic Headaches - Physical Therapy Can Help You!

January 17, 2014

Are you someone that experiences headaches weekly, monthly, or even daily? Then you might benefit from physical therapy treatment. Headaches can be caused by a large range of conditions such as vascular problems, sinus issue, muscular issues, and joint related issues to name a few. Physical therapists can treat headaches that originate from the musculoskeletal system and are commonly caused by muscle tightness, decreased joint range of motion, spinal disc pathologies, poor posture, TMJ (Temporomandibular joint) dysfunctions, and many more. Living with chronic headaches can affect many aspects of our everyday lives. Studies note, at the age of 40, 70-80% of females and 60% of males report experiencing headaches in the US (Scher et al. 1999), and a lifetime prevalence is noted between 83-93% (Boardman et al. 2003). These reports show that the majority of the population will experience headaches at some point in their lives. Persistent headaches that are musculoskeletal in nature may not go away completely without the cause being addressed in physical therapy. In order for a physical therapist to diagnosis you with a musculoskeletal issue as the cause of your headaches, they would need to do a thorough and hands on evaluation. They would then address your cause or causes by using different treatment methods including soft tissue mobilization, trigger point dry needling, joint mobilization, ergonomic training, postural education, etc. Physical Therapy treatment for headaches can be very effective and could work quickly with proper intervention and education. Contact one of our locations nearest you and see how one of our Physical Therapist can help you become “headache free.”

References: Courtney N. Brasfield, DPT, Clinic Manager Northeast Columbia, Physical Rehabilitation Group, LLC. Scher Al, Stewart WF, Lipton RB (1999). Migraine and headache: a meta-analytic approach. In: Eds Crombit IK, Croft PR, Linton SJ, Lefesche L, Vonkorff M. Epidemiology of Pain. IASP Press, Seattle. Boardman HF, Thomas E, Croft PR, Millson DS (2003). Epidemiology of headache in an English district. Cephalalagia 23. 129-137

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