By Athlete's Care on January 07, 2019
Everyone gets headaches now and then. Our Toronto physiotherapists treat a wide variety of aches and pains that involve the musculo-skeletal system, but the common garden variety of headache isn’t usually on their radar. Occasional headaches are nothing to worry about. When they become a daily – or nearly daily – reality that interferes with other areas of your life, then headaches require serious treatment.
Physiotherapy for headaches is a relatively recent innovation that has developed over the last decade or two, and can show remarkable improvement for some patients who haven’t responded to other types of therapy. The key lies in determining what is causing the pain, and whether physical therapy can alleviate the problem.
What Type Of Headache Is It?
Headaches are among the most common of all health related issues anywhere, and the International Headache Society lists over 300 types. According to WHO (World Health Organization,) in developed countries, about half of men, and a third of all women, suffer from tension-type headaches.
At one time, it was thought that abnormalities in the blood vessels, and therefore the blood flow, in and around the brain were to blame for migraines and some other types of headaches. More recently, however, the consensus seems to be leaning towards dysfunctions of the cervical spine instead for some cases, known as cervicogenic headaches. That’s where physiotherapy can come into the loop.
With the level of complexity, it’s not surprising that many people experience issues related to the cervical spine. Physiotherapy is most useful in cases of chronic and fairly benign – i.e. not severe – headaches. A research study published in 2004 found that regular (non-specialized) physiotherapy treatments helped reduce the frequency of chronic tension headaches.
Symptoms are typically consistent.
What Your Toronto Physiotherapist Can Do
Once other causes have been ruled out, and a cervicogenic headache has been diagnosed, your physiotherapist can begin to determine what is causing the pain.
If you are experiencing chronic headaches, don’t hesitate to contact one of our Toronto physiotherapists to discuss whether treatment might be right for you. You can call one of our Toronto physiotherapy, chiropractic, and sports medicine clinics today for a consultation.