Chronic headaches 101: what you need to know
Most of us suffer from headaches at some point, but for some, they can be a chronic feature of everyday life.
This means they can impact your normal activities and drain your energy.
In this article, we take a look at the causes of and treatment for chronic headaches and explain how therapies such as osteopathy can help.
What are chronic headaches?
The occasional headache is normal. They become chronic when you experience them for 15 days or more in a month, over a period of three months.
There are various types of headaches, including:
- Tension headaches that feel like a tight band around your head
- Cluster headaches, which come and go and can cause severe pain on one side
- Migraines, which are severe headaches and may involve other symptoms such as sensitivity to light, nausea and vomiting
Chronic headaches causes
Just as there are different types of headaches, there are also several causes. Your chronic headaches may be triggered by one or more of the following:
- Muscle tension and jaw clenching are often a response to emotional stress.
- Hormonal changes, such as fluctuations in estrogen levels in women.
- Trigeminal nerve issues — This nerve is located in the head and face and sends sensory information to the brain.
- Poor posture can also lead to chronic headaches.
- Dehydration is also a common cause of chronic headaches.
Chronic headaches treatment
If you are experiencing chronic headaches, consult your doctor to understand more about the likely cause and suitable treatment, such as medication.
You may also want to consider alternatives to drug therapy, such as:
- Relaxation techniques. These include meditation, mindfulness and art therapy. This approach works particularly well for tension headaches, which can be triggered by emotional imbalances.
- Improvements to your diet. This is especially important if you suffer from dehydration headaches. Getting the right fluid and nutrient intake is a simple but effective way to manage and even eliminate this type of headache.
- Osteopathy. This offers a “whole person” approach, looking at your overall health and well-being to identify a treatment plan that works for your unique needs. In the case of chronic headaches, this plan may involve massage, non-invasive manipulation techniques or craniosacral therapy that relieves compression in the head and back.
Get relief from chronic headaches with osteopathy in Calgary
The good news is that gentle treatments such as osteopathy can help you manage your chronic headaches.
If you’re looking for osteopathy in Calgary, come and see us so we can help you get the relief you deserve. Simply call us at 4038140404 or book an appointment online at osteohealthcalgary.janeapp.com to know more.
Approved by Indira Ravaeva. Manual Osteopath. Member of National Manual Osteopathic Society and Osteopathy Australia.