Do you often get headaches? If so, you’re not alone. Many people suffer from headaches on a regular basis. There are many causes of headaches, but one of the most common is tension in the neck, shoulders, and back. This can be caused by stress, poor posture, or lack of exercise. In this blog post, we will discuss the top three daily headache management stretches that can help relieve tension-related headaches.
What is the difference between a Cervicogenic Headache and a Tension Type Headache?
- Cervicogenic headaches are those that originate from the neck excluding muscles tissue. They are often caused by weight bearing structures other than muscle, usually disc pain or joint dysfunction in the neck.
- People also experience Tension type headaches from having very tight shoulders and back muscles.
We often find patients have less two headache diagnoses overlapping.
Suboccipital muscles at the base of the head are a common cause of headaches. These often become tight due to eye strain and poor posture, so it’s a common problem for people that work at a computer all day.
The upper trapezius muscles along the top of your shoulder will also cause a lot of tightness and headaches. Again, sitting at a desk with poor posture can make these muscles tight. Lifting weights on a regular basis can cause problems here too.
Muscles in the front of your body, like your pec major, can have an impact too. If your chest is very tight, this can pull your neck forward and tighten it up, leading to more headaches. This is another muscle that tends to get very tight if you are doing a lot of weightlifting. People that focus heavily on their upper body and fail to get an all-round workout will often have trouble with cervicogenic headaches.
By stretching out the muscles in your neck, shoulders, back, and chest, you can release that tension and improve your headaches.
The Top 3 Daily Cervicogenic Headache Exercises
This is one of the best migraine stretches because it gets to the root of the problem. By improving mobility and reducing tension in this muscle group, you can get instant relief from headaches.
To do this stretch, get into all fours on the floor with your head facing straight downwards. Then, simply turn your head from side to side, keeping your neck neutral. Gentle rotations of just a few inches on each side will slowly loosen your suboccipital muscles.
This is a great yoga move that will loosen your upper back muscles, your upper trapezius muscles, and your neck at the same time. It can also open up your chest muscles too.
To do this stretch, start on all fours with your spine in a neutral position. Then, arch your back up towards the ceiling like a cat. Hold this for a few seconds before releasing and letting your stomach sink down towards the floor, shifting your gaze upwards. Repeat this move slowly, following your breath as you do so.
Seated forward fold
A seated forward fold is a good way to elongate your spine and neck and relieve a lot of upper back tension.
To do this stretch, sit on the floor with your legs out in front of you. Then, slowly lean forwards from your hips, keeping your spine straight. You can place your hands on the floor in front of you or hold onto your ankles. As you lean forwards, let your head hang down towards the floor. Hold this position for a few deep breaths before coming back up.
If you do these three stretches on a daily basis, you should notice a difference in your headache intensity, duration and quality. But if you are still experiencing pain, you may need a diagnosis and treatment plan with additional and far more effective treatment method and advice.
Get in touch with Waterloo Chiropractic today and we can help you improve your situation. P| 0296900911 or book online!