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Headaches and Migraines

Did you know there are over 11 types of headaches? Ranging from a tension headache, to a migraine, even to hormonal headaches. How do you know which headache you have? Nearly everyone has experienced some form of throbbing, distracting, or uncomfortable headache. Chiropractic care for headaches and migraines can be an effective way to manage symptoms and in some cases, treat the cause.

Patients most commonly seek chiropractic care for headaches and migraines that fall into these categories - migraines, cervicogenic headaches, tension headaches, and sinus or allergy headaches. Each of these types of headaches require different types of treatment and each responds differently. Our Naperville office offers a variety of therapies to give you relief.


What's the difference between a headache and a migraine?
A migraine is frequently associated with neck pain. This can make it hard to distinguish between migraine and cervicogenic headache. A migraine episode may occur in four different phases. Not every migraine follows this pattern, and they may not be the same in every person.

  1. Prodrome phase: painless symptoms that occur hours or days before the migraine arrives.

  2. Aura phase: Auras refer to sensory disturbances that occur before or during a migraine. Examples of auras are blurred vision, blind spots, numbness in the arm, and others.

  3. Headache phase: This is when the pain usually hits, and it may range from mild to debilitating. 

  4. Postdromal phase: The final phase is when the pain has subsided. However, many describe this as a ‘hangover’ that makes them feel exhausted and unwell.


Migraines also tend to occur on one side of your head and can feel like a throbbing pain. They are also generally aggravated by physical activity. Headaches don’t follow this pattern. The most common types of headaches fall into three categories. 

- Tension headaches

- Cervicogenic headaches

- Allergy or sinus headache


What is the treatment of headaches with chiropractic care?

​​Spinal manipulation, myofascial release, therapeutic exercise, and acupuncture. Depending on the type of headache, we may add a more specific therapy to treat the cause. 

Chiropractic care for migraines:
We use a combination of therapies, such as trigger point therapy, spinal manipulation, acupuncture, and therapeutic exercises. Our goal is to relax muscles, improve blood flow, and relieve stress. This is done by easing symptoms and releasing pressure from compressed nerves that send pain signals to the brain. We can combine these therapies with relaxation techniques, stress management, and dietary counseling - all of which have been found to be effective in reducing migraine pain, frequency, and duration. 

Chiropractic care for tension headaches:
Tension headaches
result from muscle tension due to prolonged tension in the neck, shoulders, or head. We can alleviate the pain caused by tension headaches with trigger point release, spinal manipulation, and therapeutic exercise. Acupuncture is also an effective way to manage the pain that these headaches cause. 

Chiropractic care for cervicogenic headaches:
Cervicogenic headaches originate from biomechanical dysfunction in the head or neck, such as vertebral joints, discs, and nerves. We can greatly alleviate the pain caused by these headaches with spinal manipulation. By providing movement to these areas, we can directly affect the cause of these headaches. We can also guide you through exercises to activate deep neck muscles to promote stability and may help prevent cervicogenic headaches. These exercises involve actively moving the supportive muscles and joints of your neck under our guidance.

Chiropractic care for allergy or sinus headaches: 
For these types of headaches, we may recommend a combination of therapies such as; sinus massage, acupuncture, and natural supplements to alleviate the primary cause of these headaches - allergies.

In some cases, a headache may require immediate medical attention. Seek immediate medical care if you’re experiencing a headache and any of the following symptoms:

  • stiff neck

  • rash

  • the worst headache you’ve ever had

  • vomiting

  • confusion

  • slurred speech

  • fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher

  • paralysis in any part of your body

  • visual loss

Our Naperville office can offer relief from migraines and headaches. Spinal manipulation, massage, therapeutic exercise, and acupuncture are just a few of the treatments we use to help our patients feel better. If your headaches have made you unable to participate in social activities or even work, you do not need to suffer. There is headache and migraine relief in Naperville.

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