What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear ‘Chiropractor”? Our guess is that you think of a spine or hear cracking noises. Did you know that chiropractic care is actually a combination of massage therapy, passive exercise, and spinal manipulation? It is also extremely effective in the treatment of musculoskeletal system issues, especially headache treatment and prevention. This therapy is rather popular, and it mainly focuses on spinal care.
Your musculoskeletal system includes tendons, cartilage, joints, bones, and muscles. It provides support to your body, enabling you to move and protect the organs.
Countless inpiduals around the globe have experienced the advantages of this treatment. Chiropractic therapy is commonly used to treat headaches, including migraines, and guidelines have also been created.
What Is Chiropractic Therapy?
Chiropractic therapy utilizes manipulation by applying pressure on the spine or other parts of the body to correct and adjust the alignment. Proper alignment of the musculoskeletal structure of your body, especially the spine, encourages the body to heal without the need for medication or surgery.
A chiropractor uses manipulation to restore the mobility of joints that get restricted because of tissue injuries caused by any traumatic event, for instance repetitive stress or falling.
This therapy is chiefly utilized as an alternative pain relief for bones, joints, muscles, and connective tissues, such as tendons, ligaments, and cartilage.
Chiropractic therapy is also used in many cases as conjunction with traditional medical treatments.
Chiropractic Therapy for Headaches
Migraine headaches and tension headaches are the most common issues that chiropractors manage regularly. Many studies have been conducted that indicate chiropractic care to be effective in easing migraines and headaches, while assisting with preventing and curing them.
Chiropractic therapy is utilized to treat and prevent three major types of headaches – cervicogenic headaches, migraines, and tension headaches.
These headaches usually initiate with pain on one side at the back of your head, and gradually move to the front. This type of headache is often accompanied with same side arm or shoulder pain. Cervicogenic headaches are thought to originate from neck issues, and might get triggered as a result of an injury.
While these are not very common, they are typically not improved by using medication. For the treatment of this type of headache, spinal manipulation is highly recommended.
Chiropractic therapy provides the following three options to treat cervicogenic headaches:
- Spinal Manipulation – In this therapy, the chiropractor utilizes a device or their hands to place controlled pressure on specific points or joints of the spine. The upper spine and cervical spine are the main focus of this treatment.
- Joint Mobilization – This is the treatment in which the joints are moved passively in order to reduce pain or improve movements. Joint mobilization therapy also focuses on the cervical spine for treating headaches.
- Flexion Exercises – Deep neck exercises are performed to ease cervicogenic headaches. In this treatment, your joints and muscles are actively moved. For instance, you might be asked to lie on your back on the floor, and perform a set of neck tucks. After that, you would be asked to nod your head repeatedly for a while. This contraction of muscles typically lasts for about 10 seconds, with another 10 seconds of gap between the repetitions. The ultimate goal of this therapy is to stretch out the deep neck flexor muscles, which play an integral part in your neck support.
Migraines are also a type of headache, which are often accompanied by other symptoms, such as nausea and dizziness. There are two major chiropractic therapies that have been found successful for migraine:
- Neuromuscular Massage – This massage focuses on the trigger points that are situated in your head, neck, shoulder and back. Pressure is placed on these points in order to reduce the pain.
- Multidisciplinary Care Intervention – This therapy mixes dietary counseling, stress management, relaxation techniques, and physical therapy exercises. It has been proven effective in reducing the disability, duration, frequency, and pain of migraines.
Tension headaches are very common and typically caused by muscle tension as a result of prolonged tension in the head, shoulders, or neck. When it comes to chiropractic care and the treatment of headaches, the main therapy used to manage and prevent them is:
- Low-Load Craniocervical Mobilization – This therapy utilizes a much gentle force than typically utilized in spinal manipulation. This gentle force is applied to various neck joints, which allows the rhythmic movements of cervical segments to ease the pain. In some cases, stretching is also used as an intervention.
Other Benefits of Chiropractic Treatment
Aside from easing and preventing different types of headaches, chiropractic treatment is also beneficial for treating other issues and pain. One of the most beneficial factors of opting for chiropractic therapy is that your body heals naturally, without the usage of any form of drugs.
The other known benefits of chiropractic treatment include treating and preventing the following issues:
- Surgery prevention
- Issues with fibromyalgia and flexibility
- Blood pressure
- Asthma and other issues linked with the respiratory system
- Back pain caused during pregnancy
- Arthritis and joint pain
- Dizziness and vertigo
- Neck pain
- Back pain
- Ear infections
- Mental issues due to the activation of the parasympathetic nervous system, like anxiety
- Sleep issues caused by breathing problems, anxiety, or pain
Ensure that you consult an experienced and qualified chiropractor to get the right treatment and to reap the optimal benefits of this therapy. Our highly qualified and experienced Chiropractic experts at Alliance Orthopedics take a multidisciplinary approach to health and wellness. We will often recommend chiropractic care in tandem with acupuncture, functional medicine and/or physical therapy. If you are interested in learning more about how chiropractic care can help you with your wellness goals, we encourage you to make an appointment today. Visit our Alliance Orthopedics location page for details on specific hours and locations for our Old Bridge, Freehold and Matawan centers.