Unfortunately, almost everyone has sustained a headache. Headaches come in many varieties: cluster, migraine, sinus and stress or tension headaches. This article will discuss avoidance of headaches or steps you can take if you are experiencing headaches.
As a practicing chiropractor of over 36 years my experience has been that most people will get several headaches a year. When these occur, they are annoying but generally not of a serious nature. However, some people will get headaches more frequently. I’ve talked to some patients who get headaches daily, which means they have a headache 365 days per year. Even if a patient gets a headache once or twice a month that’s a dozen to two dozen headaches per year, which I think is too many.
One bit of good news is that only a small fraction of headaches people suffer from is because of serious disease or injury. If someone believes their headaches are due to these types of conditions the best way to rule it out is by having a MRI of the brain and skull and to have a blood lab test performed. If these tests are negative or inconclusive one can take other steps to work to avoid headaches and obtain headache relief.
The number one reason people experience headaches is from poor posture causing mechanical irritation to the nerves and joints of the upper spine. With so many people working at desk jobs and with students, of all ages, having to be in a seated position for hours and hours it’s important that we are aware of our upper body postures. The more the head and shoulders are back, in erect fashion, the less physical stress is incurred at the upper levels of the spine and a concomitant reduction of headache frequency and severity will occur.
Posture is also important when sleeping. It is best to sleep on one’s sides and back and avoid sleeping on the stomach. While it is sometimes hard to find the proper pillow some diligence in searching for and finding appropriate support for one’s head and neck can be accomplished.
Another aspect of headache avoidance is to be aware of our fluid and nutrient intake. Dehydration is a frequent cause of various types of headaches. Most people need to measure the amount of water that they drink daily or else they really won’t know if they are being consistent with their hydration. There are resources available to tell you how much water you should drink per day.
Additionally, some people need to avoid certain food triggers, especially those who experience migraine headaches. It is common for food such as wine, cheese, chocolate, and coffee to initiate a headache in some people. Also, some smells such as perfumes, cleaning products, chemicals like gasoline and scented candles may affect some headache sufferers. It is important to determine if there is a sensitivity to these types of products to avoid headaches.
To those who have taken the previously mentioned steps to avoid headaches but are still suffering from headaches I’d like to offer this advice. For several decades now I have had great success in helping people to reduce or eliminate headache frequency and intensity through chiropractic care. The entire chiropractic profession can claim similar accomplishment. Chiropractic care is very safe, gentle, and natural. No drugs or pharmaceuticals are administered by chiropractors.
I would respectfully advise anyone who is experiencing headaches to consult with a chiropractor to determine if a healthier, happier life can be obtained and obtain headache pain relief.