Most of Us Are Putting Up with Cervicogenic Headaches
3 MINUTE READ TIME
GOLD COAST BLOG
Dr. Paul Fisher
What are Cervicogenic headaches, anyway? It’s pain ridden, but simple. It’s a headache that comes from the cervical part of your spine, which is your neck.
How Did I Get Here?
For normal necks, you have a nice curve with nerves that will go from your neck, up and around to the base of your head. Everything works well. Now, what causes Cervicogenic headaches is an abnormal structure around the neck. Whether it’s because you’ve lost that curve, or because of a trauma, like a car crash. The curve has been reversed and it will put stress and pressure on the nerves coming out of your neck that go around to your head.
Many people get headaches. Patients talk about how they get a spike coming right out their eye, or a very diffused pain on the side of their head. What needs to be done is to work to restore the curve in your neck to take pressure off those nerves.
Should I be Concerned?
Cervicogenic headaches are probably one of the most common headaches that we see in the office. Working through this type of neck trauma is something we really do well here at Gold Coast Chiropractic. We typically have the best results with Cervicogenic headaches. There is also more and more research coming out that an improvement in the curve in your neck not only has good short term results for headaches, but also up to 1-2 year follow ups that show the results were maintained. That is almost unheard of with any kind of care.
What Does It Look Like?
We’ve talked about what the curve looks like from the side, but also need to point out what your head looks like facing forward. Your head could be shifted one way or another. That will create another set of issues that need to be addressed.
Start the Healing Process at Home
The easiest way to improve the curve in your neck, that is also the most difficult to take on, is to not spend so much time hunched over. It is possible to have good posture and watch TikToks too. It’s simple, just bring your phone up to your face. Keep your head over your shoulders.
There is one movement you need to stop doing. One of the worst exercises you can do is called a chin tuck, which is pulling your head behind your shoulders, giving everyone a front row seat to your double chin. Don’t do that.
This is concerning because:
- What we found is it actually flattens out the curve in your neck and creates even more problems.
- People will do that exercise and it will look from the outside like their posture has improved, or is improving. Posture is important, but it is only a window into what’s going on with your spine. If you have a straight neck, even if your posture looks good, that’s going to cause long term issues.
Now, a better exercise that will help the curve in your neck is to be sitting or even standing, jut your chin out, look up slightly, and pull your neck back behind your shoulders. This actually works to improve the normal curve in your neck and even strengthen it. Do this 10-15x, hold it for a second or two with each rep, and do it once or twice a day. Really simple, quick, and easy.
Why Keep Suffering in Silence?
If you’ve been suffering with Cervicogenic headaches for a while, the best thing to do would be to come into our office to see how we can help. This is a condition that typically responds very, very well to chiropractic care, and long term, the improvements hold which is always wonderful.
Dr. Paul Fisher