What Causes Chronic Headaches

Chronic Headaches

Many people experience headaches occasionally, but when headaches become chronic, they can affect your daily activity and reduce your quality of life. Panther Physical Therapy is here to help you understand some of the more common causes of chronic headaches.

Tension

Tension headaches are the most common type of headaches. This is because anyone can experience the tension in the muscles of in face, neck and shoulders that are often to blame for them. This tension can be caused by a variety of factors including:

  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Eye or Neck Strain 

Poor posture

In the distant past when most people worked outside as laborers, poor posture was less of a problem. Now that many American workers are chained to their desks hunched over a computer screen all day, poor posture has become a much bigger factor in the cause of chronic headaches. The hunched over position of the head and neck place incredible strain on the muscles in the neck and shoulders. 

With normal posture, the vertebrae of the neck have a slight bend backward, but over hours, days and years of tilting the head in a forward position the muscles in your neck will actually move those vertebrae forward. This is why many tension headaches will also usually be accompanied by neck or shoulder pain.

Sudden traumatic injury

A severe head injury can also cause chronic headaches. The whiplash movement experienced during a car accident can leave you with pain and inflammation in the sensitive muscles and nerves of your neck. In addition, headaches are common symptoms for people who suffer a concussion or other blows to the head. Seek immediate medical attention if you feel any of the following symptoms following a head injury:

  • Numbness or tingling in the head, neck and shoulders
  • Severe nausea or vomiting
  • Confusion, cognitive impairment or changes in personality
  • Dizziness or loss of balance

How Panther Physical Therapy can help

The physical therapists of Panther Physical Therapy are experts in treating chronic headaches. Individualized treatment plans may include:

  • Targeted exercises to increase the muscle strength in the neck
  • Manual therapy to release tension in the neck
  • Ergonomic recommendations to improve posture and reduce forward neck strain

If you or a loved one suffers from chronic headaches, contact one of our friendly administrative staff today to begin your initial consultation and go over any questions that you may have.