Headaches Migraine Conditions Chiropractor Arlington Heights IL

Headaches are a common problem, with approximately 50% of people reporting a headache every year. Due to how frequent headaches are, many people think headaches are just a normal part of life. Headaches are COMMON, but they are not NORMAL. They are a sign from our bodies that something is wrong.

One of the most common causes of headaches is physical and mental stress. Physical stress occurs from poor posture and repetitive motions. Stress creates fixations and misalignments within the cervical spine, putting pressure on the nerves that travel to the head, resulting in headaches.

Mental stress causes tightness in the muscles that connect the bones of the neck to the base of the skull, which can put pressure on the nerves traveling into the head, leading to headaches. Other causes of headaches can include underlying medical conditions (high blood pressure and infection), allergies, changes in weather, dehydration, and sleep deprivation. In our office, we focus mainly on the mechanical and physical causes, but we can also help you with lifestyle changes for the other causes.

Chiropractic adjustments reduce misalignments and fixations within the spine, reducing nerve pressure and resolving headaches. Chiropractic treatment is different from conventional headache treatments in that we treat the body from the inside out versus the outside in. We find the root cause creating your headaches and resolve the actual problem rather than temporarily improving the pain.

How We Treat Headaches in Arlington Heights, IL

Comprehensive Consultation and Exam

Before performing any examination or treatment, you will sit down with a doctor who will really listen to what you have been experiencing. We want to ensure that we know exactly what is causing your pain before recommending any treatment.

Once we have a better idea of what has been going on, we will perform a thorough examination, including palpation of the spine, posture analysis, orthopedic tests, computerized neurological scans, and, if needed, digital X-rays.

At the end of the evaluation, the goal is to determine if dysfunction in the spine and nervous system are the root cause of your headaches and determine the best course of treatment.

Digital X-rays

Your doctor may recommend digital X-rays to determine if your headaches result from spinal dysfunction. X-rays allow us to examine the neck’s curvature and the discs that lie between each vertebra.

We live in a world of technology which means we are constantly looking down. Over time, this causes a loss of curvature in our neck, which creates added stress on the nervous system resulting in the headaches you may be experiencing.

Our X-ray analysis tells us where to adjust, where not to adjust, and which chiropractic adjusting techniques will specifically work best for you. The information we gather from digital X-rays is integral to getting to the bottom of exactly what is causing your pain and how to safely and effectively fix it.

Specific Chiropractic Care in Springfield, IL

A subluxation is a joint of the spine that is misaligned or fixated, meaning it cannot function as it should. When this happens, it puts stress and pressure on the nervous system preventing the nerves from functioning how they should. The nerves in the neck are the nerves that are directly related to headaches.

Chiropractic adjustments are very specific movements performed on areas of the spine where subluxations are present. This removes pressure on the nervous system allowing your nerves to function optimally. If a subluxation causes your headaches, they won’t get better until you address the physical problem.

Custom Therapeutic Exercise Plan

When joints of the spine are misaligned or not functioning how they should, it can create muscle weakness and imbalance. Muscle weakness can come from poor posture resulting in the head shifting forward. The result is a condition known as Upper Cross Syndrome, where the trapezius muscles in the neck and upper back become tight, and the muscles in the front of the neck become weak. For this reason, you will receive a customized headache exercise plan that is to be done at home to ensure proper healing.

Common Types of Headaches at Sleigh Family Chiropractic

Tension Headaches

Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. Many people believe that headaches are a normal part of life. Headaches may be COMMON, but they are not NORMAL.

Tension headaches typically arise from stress, leading to muscle tightness and misalignments within the bones of the neck. These misalignments compress the nerves that travel up into the head, creating headaches. Pain tends to be mild to moderate and feels like a tight band around the head. Chiropractic adjustments allow the joints of the neck to function correctly, taking pressure off the nerves for much-needed tension headache relief.

Migraine Headaches

Migraines are headaches that usually cause pain on one side of the head. Pain is typically a throbbing or pulsing sensation with associated nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sounds. Some migraines can be caused by other health issues, such as high blood pressure, although those coming in for treatment have ruled this out.

Other common causes of migraines include hormone shifts, food allergies, prolonged periods on phones and computers, dehydration, and joint dysfunction. Chiropractic adjustments restore motion into the joints of the neck, reducing pressure on the nervous system and ultimately improving the frequency and severity of migraines.

Allergy or Sinus Headaches

Allergy or sinus headaches cause pressure around the eyes, cheeks, and forehead. They are typically caused by sinus infections or inflammation within the sinuses from allergies. Pain worsens with bending the head forward. Chiropractic adjustments to the upper neck will ensure the nerves going into the head are functioning as they should, allowing the sinuses to drain.

Pregnancy Headache

Headaches during pregnancy are very common. They can arise from the increase in stress, both mentally and physically. During pregnancy, there are higher levels of the Relaxin hormone, allowing all joints to become more mobile. This means pregnant women are more susceptible to misalignments within the spine, which can create compression on nerves that travel into the head, creating headaches. Lifestyle habits can also cause pregnancy-related headaches, so ensuring you stay physically active, eat regularly, and get enough sleep are essential in preventing headaches.

Whiplash Headache

Whiplash is a condition that arises when there is forceful rapid back-and-forth motion of the neck. It is most commonly associated with motor vehicle accidents, however, it can be from any forceful movement. Whiplash creates misalignments of the bones of the neck, compressing the nerves and leading to neck pain and headaches. These headaches typically begin at the base of the skull. They can travel up into the head and may be associated with concussion-like symptoms, including blurred vision, memory loss, and difficulty sleeping. Chiropractic adjustments will ensure proper alignment and motion of the bones in the neck, taking pressure off the nerves and providing headache relief.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a chiropractor good for headaches?

Chiropractic is great for headaches! When the neck joints are unable to move and function as they should, it creates stress and inflammation in the nerves, leading to headaches. Chiropractic adjustments focus on restoring motion into the joints taking pressure off the nerves so your body can function as it should.

When should you see a chiropractor for headaches?

It is always best to see a chiropractor as soon as possible. Pain is typically the last symptom to show up, however, the problem has been developing for years. For this reason, it is best to come in earlier rather than later so you can have a quicker and smoother recovery.

Are chiropractors covered by insurance for headaches?

Most insurance companies cover chiropractic care, however, when you come for your initial visit, we will make a copy of your insurance card and verify your chiropractic benefits to discuss at the following appointment.

Can getting your neck adjusted help with headaches?

Getting your neck adjusted is an excellent option for treating headaches. Headaches arise when the joints of the spine are misaligned or unable to function correctly. Chiropractic adjustments restore joint motion, taking pressure off the nervous system and ultimately reducing your headaches.

Can cracking my own neck relieve headaches?

We highly advise against cracking your own neck. The reason for this is when you crack your neck, you are moving joints that are already moving how they should. Chiropractic adjustments are very specific and focus on moving joints that cannot move how they should. Going to a chiropractor for adjustments is the safest and best option.