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Heather Allen, MS, PT
Headaches Are They All In Your Head?
Journeying into Healing, LLC
. http://www.journeyingintohealing.com/

Headaches Are They All In Your Head?

Most, if not all people, will at one point in their life have a headache. For some it will be because they skipped a meal, for others it will be because their children have had a day filled with tantrums and bad behavior. But what about the remaining population? Chronic headache sufferers need closer examination to determine the cause of their complaints, and it may turn out NOT to be related to their head at all.

Let's look at some examples of how a headache isn't always related to the head, beginning with poor posture. If you are one to carry your head in a forward and/or down posture (computer work anyone?), you are placing a strain on the muscles at the base of your head and along the sides of your neck. Compression of the nerves at the base of your skull can result in pain radiating up and around into your forehead. Strain on the muscles in the side of your neck result in pain radiating up around the ear and into an eye. You can also get headaches that come from your jaw. Does stress have you grinding or clenching your teeth? These actions create tightness in the muscles of the jaw and compression of the TMJ (joint of the jaw) resulting in referred pain to the head.

How about considering headaches that come from your pelvis? Many people have misalignment in the bony framework of their pelvis. Your pelvis is attached to your skull through the meninges or fascial tube that surrounds the spinal cord and brain. If your pelvis is not aligned correctly it will result in an abnormal pull on this tube and therefore put abnormal pressure on the brain causing headaches. This is often the case for chronic migraine sufferers and can get missed in traditional exams. After all, who would think to look at your pelvis to help solve your headache mystery?

All these issues can be resolved by seeing a highly trained physical therapist. Those trained in close postural analysis of the spine, cranial bones (bones of the skull), and pelvis will be able to find issues related to these structures to correct the problem and relieve the headaches. Myofascial release (MFR) is a great tool for doing this. MFR is able to correct misalignment of the pelvis and relieve tension in the neck and jaw thereby improving, or outright resolving, your headache complaints.

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