Friday, March 17, 2023

Headache That Goes Into Neck

Must read

What Causes Back And Neck Pain

How to Get Rid of Neck Pain From Sleeping Wrong

Even with today’s technology, the exact cause of back and neck pain is difficult to determine. In most cases, back and neck pain may have many different causes, including any of the following:

  • Overuse, strenuous activity, or improper use, such as repetitive or heavy lifting

  • Trauma, injury, or fractures

  • Degeneration of vertebrae, often caused by stresses on the muscles and ligaments that support your spine, or the effects of aging

  • Abnormal growth, such as a tumor or bone spur

  • Obesity, which places increased weight on your spine, and pressure on your discs

  • Poor muscle tone

  • Joint problems, such as arthritis

  • Protruding or herniated disk and pinched nerve

  • Osteoporosis and compression fractures

  • Congenital abnormalities of your vertebrae and bones

  • Abdominal problems, such as an aortic aneurysm

How Sleep And Posture Can Affect Migraine And Neck Pain

The quality of your sleep and the amount of sleep can impact migraine, Kumar says. Sleep is important in headaches, especially migraine, and too little sleep and too much sleep can trigger a migraine attack, she says.

The position that you sleep in matters as well, especially if you have neck pain with your migraine, says Kumar. You may want to adjust your positioning, especially if you have an additional issue like arthritis of the neck sleeping with a cervical roll or pillow could help, too, she says. A cervical roll can improve your posture while you sleep by helping you maintain a normal cervical curve and prevent bending of the neck.

Posture absolutely matters when it comes to neck pain, says Kumar. If were sitting at a computer and get engrossed in our work, our posture may suffer, which can contribute to neck pain, she says.

A big contributor to poor posture comes from looking down at your phone or computer screen. A study published in Surgery Technology International that looked at text neck found that when a person holds their head upright and in line with their shoulders, the head weighs about 10 pounds. For every inch the head tilts forward the amount of weight it places on the spine almost doubles, which places a strain on the neck muscles.

Herniated Cervical Disc And Pinched Nerve

A pinched nerve in the cervical area of your spine can cause shooting neck pains that radiate to your head. According to Dr. William H. Blahd on WebMD, herniated discs most commonly occur in the cervical spine and lumbar spine. This bulge puts pressure on the nerve and can cause intense pain, pain when moving or bending your neck, or tingling in your arms and legs.11

Many sensory nerve fibers are located in your spinal cord in the upper cervical area of your spine. The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association reports that pinched cervical nerves can cause a cervicogenic headache, or a cervical headache. This can cause headache pain like a migraine attack that feels as if something is thumping in your head.10

Researchers say that other symptoms of a pinched nerve include:

  • Stiff neck and pain in the back of the neck
  • Pain that radiates to the shoulder and/or lower back
  • Throbbing sensation in the back of the head
  • Headaches that are caused by moving the neck
  • Tenderness of the scalp and back of the neck

Please read my article on how to treat pinched nerves in the upper back to find out how to get rid of neck pain quickly.

You May Like: Headache In The Temple Area

Other Headaches That Cause Neck Pain

“Neck pain can be its own headache, called a cervicogenic headache,” says Dr. Ahmed. According to the National Headache Society, cervicogenic headaches come from a source in your neck. The pain starts in the spine of your neck, called your cervical spine, and travels up to your head. The problem in your cervical spine could be due to pressure on a nerve or blood vessel from a cervical vertebra, one of the bones in your neck. Headaches can be traced to neck trauma or arthritis of the cervical spine.

Cervicogenic headaches can be severe. They usually cause pain and a stiff neck, and typically the pain gets worse when you move your neck. Pain can shoot into your shoulders, arms, face, head and eyes. Pain can mimic a migraine and be only on one side. Treatment of these headaches depends on the cause, but it may include physical therapy, nerve block injections, pain medication and sometimes surgery.

“A severe headache with neck pain could be a migraine or cervicogenic headache,” Dr. Ahmed says. “The most important thing to do is get the right diagnosis so you can get the right treatment.”

Tips To Relieve Headache With Neck Pain

Four Common Causes of Migraine: Get Relief

Headache with neck pain can be a double whammy that makes it difficult to move the head and/or concentrate. While headaches can cause the muscles in your neck to become stiff and painful, a problem in your neck, such as irritated nerves, can also cause headaches. Common conditions where you may experience headache and neck pain together are:

Several conditions can cause neck pain and headache to occur together. ReadWhat Is Causing My Neck Pain and Headache?

Here are 11 tips to help relieve headache and neck pain without medication. Just remember to stop a treatment if it makes your pain worse.

  • Apply firm pressure. Applying compression on the temples, forehead, and/or back of the neck provide may provide relief from pain caused by tension headaches or migraines.1 This pressure may be applied with your fingertips, hands, or by wrapping a handkerchief around your head.
  • Try heat therapy. In some people, headaches may be caused by constriction of blood vessels, and can be relieved by placing a heat pack on the back of the neck. Taking a hot shower may also help in relieving pain while also providing a relaxed feeling. When applying heat therapy, limit applications to 15 minutes with at least 2 hours of rest in between to prevent skin damage.

    See How to Apply Heat Therapy

  • See Massage Therapy for Chronic Stiff Neck

  • Read Also: Fever Headache And Body Aches

    Headache Neck Pain And Nauseahow To Ease Them

    Headache, neck pain, and nausea may stem from a misalignment in the upper cervical spine. Our upper cervical spine is vital in supporting the weight of our head. Therefore, injuries in this area of the body can cause moderate to severe problems.

    Upper cervical chiropractic care uses a gentle and non-invasive technique to access the root of your pain. Chiropractors will precisely reposition any misaligned parts of your upper cervical spine. This method can help release pressure between your spinal cord, nerves, head, and brainstem.

    However, before chiropractors do the realignment, a proper diagnosis must be made first. If you think that an upper cervical misalignment causes your headache, neck pain and nausea, you must book a consultation with an upper cervical chiropractor. Go to our directory so you can find the nearest upper cervical chiropractor near you.

    When To Worry About Neck Pain With A Headache

    Usually, theres nothing to worry but at times when you notice these conditions immediately consult your doctor.

    • Having shoulder and neck pain with headache or pain that extends to the lower back.
    • The presence of the condition for more than 2 weeks.
    • When the condition is due to the result of an injury.
    • Eye pain is a combination of headache and neck pain.
    • Slurred speech and blur vision.

    Recommended Reading: How Long Do Migraines Last With Medication

    What To Expect At Your Office Visit

    Your provider will take a medical history and will examine your head, eyes, ears, nose, throat, neck, and nervous system.

    Your provider will ask many questions to learn about your headaches. Diagnosis is usually based on your history of symptoms.

    Tests may include:

    • Blood tests or a lumbar puncture if you may have an infection
    • Head CT scan or MRI if you have any danger signs or you have been having headaches for a while

    How Do We Assess And Treat Neck

    Shoulder Blade Pain Gone in 30 Seconds!
    • Asking you to explain what your symptoms are, when you get them, how often you get them, and how they are affecting things
    • Thoroughly assessing your Upper Neck for any joint stiffness and muscle tightness. A really good tell for us that your headache or migraine is coming from your neck is the ability to replicate the familiar symptoms, and have them resolve as we hold the pressure of our thumb on your joint. If this happens – then we are in business and it is extremely likely we can help. If it doesn’t – not to worry – it is still likely to have an effect if your neck is stiff and tight to the touch.
    • Assessing any other relevant joints, muscles, discs, nerves or other factors to establish if we are able to help out.

    Read Also: Difference Between Migraines And Headaches

    You Have Speech Or Vision Changes

    When a headache is more than just a simple headache, you will also have other symptoms. If you also have changes in your vision, trouble speaking or walking, or weakness on one side of body, you could be having a stroke.

    A stroke occurs when the blood supply to your brain is cut off or severely reduced, causing cells to die almost immediately. Migraines with aura can be confused with a stroke, but they often give you added sensations, such as tingling in the body or flashes in your vision, whereas a stroke takes away sensations and results in a loss of vision or lack of feeling in the hands.

    Even if you get migraines, the pain you feel from a headache during a stroke will be different for example, a headache that comes on very suddenly is likely not a migraine and could be caused by a stroke. But it can be hard to tell the difference, so if you even suspect you may be having a stroke, call 911.

    How Are Back And Neck Pain Treated

    If you experience acute back or neck pain, it may simply improve with some rest. Over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, may also help with the discomfort. You should try to move gently during this period, so that you will not become stiff and lose mobility.

    If you have chronic pain of your back and neck, you should try several remedies that may be helpful, before seeking surgical options. These include:

    • Hot or cold packs

    • Specific exercises to strengthen muscles and ease pain, such as stretching and flexing. Your health care provider can provide and demonstrate these exercises.

    • Aerobic exercise may be permitted and can help with your overall fitness and strength

    • Certain anti-inflammatory medications or muscle relaxants may be used, with your health care providers supervision

    • Braces or corsets for extra support

    • Injections for pain relief in the area

    • Nerve block, which decreases pain signals from the affected nerve

    Recommended Reading: Can Wisdom Teeth Cause Migraines

    Cervicogenic Headaches A Pain In The Neck

    If you stick your neck out for someone, the saying suggests, then youve taken some risk.

    In this technology-driven age, were literally sticking our necks out at the risk of causing very real headache pain. An article in Mens Journal used the term the desk workers malady, while a BBC story called it text neck.

    The problem is that were craning our heads forward over our screens, according to the BBC, and its creating intense pressure on the front and backs of our necks.

    That pressure can cause pain that manifests as a headache. This pain actually isnt in the head but rather is referred from the neck.

    The technical term for this is cervicogenic headache, or CGH, which by one estimate accounts for 15 to 20 percent of all headache disorders. The Journal of Manual and Manipulative Therapy noted:

    Although the prevalence of CGH is considerably lower than tension-type headache and migraine, patients with CGH have a substantial quality-of-life burden, comparable to patients with migraine and tension-type headache.

    The first part of cervicogenic refers to the cervical spine, comprising seven bones more commonly known as the neck genic means that the headache is generated in this area, particularly the upper three bones. In other words, what feels like a dull, achy pain in the head really has its roots in the neck.

    Common causes of CGH can be chronic: poor posture, as noted above, or arthritis.

    Immediate Action Required: Phone 999 If:

    Cervicogenic Headache: Pain Patterns, Causes, and Self
    • your headache occurs suddenly and is very severe it may feel like a blinding pain
    • your headache occurs after a severe head injury

    You have an extremely painful headache and:

    • slurred speech or memory loss
    • a very high temperature, feel hot and shivery, and have a stiff neck or a rash
    • drowsiness or confusion
    • severe pain and redness in one of your eyes

    Read Also: Migraine Pain In Ear And Jaw

    When Should I Call The Doctor

    If you think your headaches may be migraines, you’ll want to see a doctor to treat them and learn ways to try to avoid getting the headaches in the first place. Sometimes relaxation exercises or changes in diet or sleeping habits are all that’s needed. But if needed, a doctor also can prescribe medicine to help control the headaches.

    You’ll also want to see a doctor if you have any of these symptoms as well as a headache:

    • changes in vision, such as blurriness or seeing spots
    • tingling sensations
    • weakness, dizziness, or difficulty walking or standing
    • neck pain or stiffness

    If you do see a doctor for headaches, he or she will probably want to do an exam and get your to help figure out what might be causing them.

    The doctor may ask you:

    • how severe and frequent your headaches are
    • when they happen
    • about any medicine you take
    • about any allergies you have
    • if you’re feeling stressed
    • about your diet, habits, sleeping patterns, and what seems to help or worsen the headaches

    The doctor may also do blood tests or imaging tests, such as a CAT scan or MRI of the brain, to rule out medical problems.

    Sometimes doctors will refer people with headaches they think might be migraines or a symptom of a more serious problem to a specialist like a , a doctor who specializes in the brain and nervous system.

    It’s very rare that headaches are a sign of something serious. But see a doctor if you get headaches a lot or have a headache that:

    Anxiety And Blurred Vision

    Usually,people dont usually talk to their massage therapist about blurred vision or anxiety, but this trigger point is associated with those symptoms. I have often found this in special needs children that are stuck in fight-or-flight. These symptoms seem to clear up quickly when the trigger point is released. However, if it is an adult, I ask them about their vision and anxiety before and after to help them make the connection.

    Recommended Reading: Which Piercing Helps With Migraines

    Neck Pain And Cervicogenic Headache

    Cervicogenic headache usually begins as a dull ache in the neck and radiates upward along the back of the head, almost always one-sided. Pain may also spread to the forehead, temple, and area around the eyes and/or ears. CGH is caused due to an underlying disc, joint, muscle, or nerve disorder in the neck.

    CGH is a secondary headache that occurs when pain from an underlying source in the neck is felt in the head. Common causes of CGH include injury or trauma to the cervical spine, or systemic conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, or infections.

    How Is A Neck Headache Diagnosed

    How to Sleep PAIN-FREE With Neck Pain And/Or Pinched Nerve

    Accurate diagnosis is essential to guide the correct treatment and management of your neck headache. A headache and head pain can have many causes, not just neck headaches or migraines. Correctly identifying the cause will lead to better treatment. A headache physiotherapist who has a particular interest in neck headaches is the best professional to diagnose and treat your neck headache.

    Don’t Miss: How To Get Rid Of Congestion Headache

    A Pharmacist Can Help With Headaches

    You can ask a pharmacist about:

    • the best painkiller to take, if you’re not sure which is suitable for you
    • what to do if you’re pregnant some medicines are not recommended in pregnancy
    • medicines for sleep problems like insomnia if you’re having trouble sleeping and you think it may be causing your headaches
    • is annoying but does not stop you doing daily activities

    How You Activate And Intensify This Pain Pattern

    Often, a sharp forward bend in the base of the neck with a turn to one side aggravates this trigger point. In addition, this posture is more likely to create tension in the eye and blurred vision.

    It is one of the most common pain generators in Forward-Head Posture. The self-care post has exercises that help to resolve long-term postural patterns that perpetuate the trigger points in this pain pattern.

    This trigger point creates one of the headaches you can get from craning your neck as you jut your chin forward and down to look at your laptop.

    This trigger point is also a typical pattern that arises when dealing with the problems related to whiplash.

    Also Check: What Triggers An Ocular Migraine

    How People Describe This Pain Pattern

    With this pattern, people complain of a headache behind the eye. Thats not enough information. When the headache pattern is severe, they may trace the pattern with their hand. Starting from the back of their neck, they move along the side of their head. Then, they focus their fingertips on the eye.

    There are several headache patterns in the eye, so I always ask for as many specifics as possible. Often regular clients are more aware of their pain patterns. And theyve learned how to communicate the issue. Here, they tell me that it comes out of the neck and creates pain through the middle of their head. Often, they touch the spot of the trigger point complaining of tension and stiffness there. I will then usually find muscle is stiff or swollen along the side of the pain.

    More articles

    Popular Articles