Common Causes Of Headaches
The best way to get rid of a headache quickly may depend on whats causing it and what type of headache it is. A primary headache is caused by overactivity or problems with the pain-sensitive structures in your head, according to the Mayo Clinic. Common types of primary headaches include migraine attacks and tension headaches.
A less common type of primary headache is a cluster headache, which comes on suddenly, almost always affects only one side of the head, and is accompanied by a runny nose and tearing eye on the same side of the head as the headache. The pain of a cluster headache is severe and lasts from 15 minutes to 3 hours, when untreated. For most people, cluster headaches occur in a series, or in clusters, lasting weeks or months, separated by remission periods of months or years.
A secondary headache is a symptom of a disease that can trigger pain-sensitive nerves in the head. There are many conditions that can cause a secondary headache, from a sinus infection to a brain aneurysm to hangovers to COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.
While a hangover or a headache caused by a sinus infection or by COVID-19 may respond to the same pain-relieving treatments as a tension headache, a brain aneurysm, or other severe headaches associated with neurologic changes such as weakness or loss of consciousness, for example, are medical emergencies that you shouldnt attempt to treat on your own.
What Causes Neck Pain
The neck is also called the cervical spine. Its made up of seven bones responsible for supporting the head and allowing nerves to travel from the spine to the brain. When any part of the neck is injured or strained, pain can occur. Some common causes of neck pain include:
- Your car: How you drive can contribute to neck pain. The way you sit in the drivers seat should make it easy for you to hold your spine straight without leaning forward or craning your neck. If the seat is too far back or too low, youre likely to lean forward and put stress on the neck. Driving for long periods can also cause eye strain, which can lead to discomfort in the neck.
- Your phone: If youre always checking your phone, you might have noticed soreness in the neck. Looking at your phone with your head dropped and your shoulders stooped affects your necks curve, potentially leading to problems. When youre stooped forward, theres more weight and pressure on the neck, which can lead to muscle strain.
- Your work style: Sitting in front of a computer or at a desk all day is known to contribute to spinal problems, including neck pain. If your computer monitor is too low or too high, you have to strain your neck to clearly see the screen, putting more pressure on your neck.
Massage For A Stiff Neck
You can also massage with essential oils that are good to relieve pain and inflammation, such as peppermint essential oil, which contains natural analgesic properties that naturally reduce pain. Peppermint also contains methanol that helps naturally soothe sore muscles.
Start by relaxing your muscles by taking a hot shower or bath. Mix a tablespoon of carrier oil such as coconut or olive oil with a few drops of the peppermint oil and massage the affected area in firm yet gentle strokes for several minutes. If you cant reach the pain, try asking a friend or a family member for help.
If you are interested to learn more about essential oils you can find useful information in my e-book Magical Aromatherapy which will help you to discover the power of essential oils and the most effective ways to use them.
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What Causes Tension Headaches
At the base of the skull, there is a group of muscles called the suboccipital muscles. They can cause headache pain for many people. These four pairs of muscles are responsible for subtle movements between the skull and first and second vertebrae in the neck.
The suboccipital muscles may become tense and tender due to the following:
- Eye strain
- Grinding teeth
Pain from the suboccipital muscles commonly feels like a band wrapping around the head. Also, tension in these muscles may cause compression of a nerve that exits the base of the skull. This can trigger pain that wraps over the head and above the eyes.
How To Treat Frozen Shoulder Fast And Easily At Home
When there is too much of a pain, then doctors often recommend taking the help of steroids, painkillers or other numbing medicines. But, as you know taking all of these medicines is not good for your health in the long run. These may give you quick relief but in most cases the relief is temporary. You need to think of remedies that are safe for your health in general and help you treat frozen shoulder fast and easily at home. And, thankfully, there are natural remedies and practices that can help you in treating frozen shoulder naturally.
The process of recovery may be gradual, but it helps you to recover completely from the frozen shoulder and that is very important.
Listed below are some of the easiest remedies to treat frozen shoulder fast and naturally.
Take a look and use it your advantage.
Heating and stretching the shoulder
Heating and stretching is one of the most effective practice that can help you treat frozen shoulder fast and give quick relief from the pain. It, in fact, is the first step that you need to take before you take up the other ways .
Listed below are a few of the simplest shoulder stretches that you may like to practice.
- Lie down or simply sit and lift the arm straight above you.
- Open and close a door or cabinet. This will help to rotate the arm externally.
- Lie down and make a shape of T using your arms. You need to just bring them outward and to the floor.
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Prevention Of Shoulder Pain
- If you have previously suffered from any shoulder injury or ailment, it is well advised to regularly perform a few simple range-of-motion exercises to keep your shoulder muscles and tendons properly stretched and flexible to avoid recurrence or a frozen shoulder.
- If you are prone to shoulder issues, it may be a good idea to follow up your regular workouts with 15 minutes of massaging your shoulder area with an ice compress.
- Drink a few glasses of warm lemon water daily to prevent mineral deposits in the joints that can cause pain in your shoulder and other body parts.
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When To See A Doctor
More often than not, home remedies and physical therapy is all you need to treat pain at the base of your skull. However, if you find that your head still hurts and you cant get any pain relief, you may need to see a doctor.
You should never ignore chronic headaches that cause pounding head pain or neck pain that interferes with your daily activities. Doctors from Harvard Medical School advise that you should see a doctor for neck pain and headaches in the back of your head in the following circumstances:
- Home remedies dont provide any relief from constant headaches and/or neck pain.
- Headaches at the base of your neck are the result of a serious head or neck injury.
- You have numbness in one or both arms.
- Sneezing, coughing, or moving your head makes the back of your head hurt badly.
- You have a stiff neck, fever, pounding headache, and a rash that may be symptomatic of meningitis.
- Frequent headaches are accompanied by slurred speech, vision problems, or seizures.
- You develop a painful red eye.
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Shoulder And Neck Referred Pain
Because of the close connection of the nerves serving them, shoulder and neck pain are often mistaken for one another.
You may feel a pain in the shoulder thats actually coming from your neck, and vice versa. This is called referred pain.
Some of the symptoms of referred pain from your neck include:
- stabbing, burning, or electric-like tingling pain
- pain that radiates to your shoulder blade, elbow, and hand
- pain that radiates down your arm when you twist your neck
- pain thats relieved when you support your neck
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What Pressure Points Get Rid Of A Headache
You might be quick to dismiss pressure points. But Sultan says there are some main ones to note when attempting to get rid of a headache.
To work a pressure points, press each spot using either a knuckle or your thumb/index finger. Press gently, then slowly increase pressure. It shouldnt hurt.
Try the below
Seated Levator Scapulae Stretch
Targeted muscle: Levator scapulae.
How to do it:
Begin in a seated position and grasp the bottom of your chair with your right hand.Bring your chin in towards your chest and rotate your head towards the left shoulder. Then using your left arm gently push your head down looking towards your left armpit until you feel a slightly stretch along with right side of your neck.Hold this position for 15 to 20 seconds.Repeat on the opposite side.Aim for 3 repetitions of this stretch on each side.
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Best Treatments For Neck Pain Relief
Cervical epidural steroid injection: As the name suggests, this is an injection that is given to the epidural space of your spine and it involves a steroid like cortisone. The specific spinal space consisting of irritated nerves is the epidural space. This injection is given to minimize pain and inflammation in your neck, arms and shoulders. People who receive these shots normally have arthritis, spinal stenosis and/or herniated discs that exert pressure on their nerves, causing pain, swelling, inflammation and discomfort. When a cervical epidural steroid injection is provided, these symptoms can disappear.
Cervical facet block injection: This is a good spinal treatment for neck pain as it is less invasive and quick. It is normally picked for sufferers of arthritis. The doctor targets certain facet joints in your cervical spine and injects them with a tiny amount of local anesthetic drug and steroid medicine. A pain management expert must use a fluoroscopic guide for proper imaging and after the shot, the facet joint is numbed and the pain is blocked. About one or two cervical facet block injections are enough in most cases.
How To Get Rid Of Headaches For Good
Few things can be more debilitating than a persistent headache. But what causes headaches, and what can you do to get rid of headaches for good?
What Causes Headaches
Its important to realise that there are several different types of headaches migraines, tension-type headaches and cervicogenic headaches. Whilst they are very similar in terms of presentation, they can be caused by vastly different things. Migraines may be caused by emotional factors like stress or anxiety, or environmental and physical factors like exhaustion and jetlag. For this article, we will focus on headaches caused by neck dysfunction.
In the upper region of the neck, there are bundles of nerves that all have unique jobs one of these nerves , is responsible for sensation in the face, including the head, forehead, eye and temple region. Pressure on the upper cervical region will send pain signals through these nerves, causing the pain to travel to the front of the head.
Pressure can come from degenerative conditions like osteoarthritis, whiplash or trauma .
Prolonged poor posture when sitting or standing at work can also create this pressure at the base of the skull.
How to Treat Headaches
There are two steps to getting rid of headaches for good. The first is to relieve the symptoms of the headache by treating the neck dysfunction. Three exercises to relieve headaches are:
1. Upper trap release
2. Chin Tucks with Rotation
3. Cervical Traction
1. Cat / Cow
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Shower Or Soak With Bath Salts
Water may do wonders for your neck pain from sleeping wrong. When taking a shower, run lukewarm or hot water over your neck and head for about five minutes. Remember to keep your neck straight during the shower.
Alternatively, you can also soak in a warm bath with Epsom salt. This can improve circulation and relieve tension in your neck muscles.
How To Soothe A Sore Neck
Neck pain essentials include icing and heat, gentle therapeutic exercise, and good posture.
Sore neck? Its pretty common. And most men get neck pain for the same reasons they suffer low back pain. In the vast majority of people, its routine muscle strain and sprain, says Dr. Robert Shmerling, associate professor of medicine at Harvard-affiliated Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. The neck has to support that heavy bowling ball on top.
The remedies for neck and back pain also have some things in common. First, ease the early intense pain with rest, ice, and heat then move on to gentle stretching and strengthening exercises. Later, avoid bad posture and other habits that could trigger another neck pain crisis.
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Gallstones Or Enlarged Gallbladder
Pain in your right shoulder can be a sign of a gallstone blocking a duct in your gallbladder. You may also feel pain in your back between your shoulder blades. The pain may be sudden and sharp.
You may or may not feel the more common symptoms of gallstones or gallbladder inflammation. These are:
- sudden pain in your upper right abdomen
- pain in the center of your abdomen, below your breast bone
- nausea or vomiting
Neck Pain Tip : Get Out Of Your Slump
Bad posture is a major contributor to neck pain. Think about your posture every time you are sitting, standing, or lifting. Always try to keep your head and neck straight and make sure your back is supported. When you sit at your desk, for example, your computer should be at eye level and your chair should be right up against your back . Your mouse should be positioned low enough so that you don’t have to continually reach for it. When you go to pick something up, don’t lean forward. Instead, bend from your knees and keep your back straight, which will also help protect against low back pain.
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Other Reasons For Having A Headache In The Back Of Head And Neck
There can be some other reasons why pain in the base of your skull causes headaches.
Bad pillow or mattress. If you frequently wake up in the morning with a headache at the back of your neck, then it could be caused by a bad pillow or mattress. The journal Advances in Physiotherapy reported that choosing the right pillow can reduce the frequency of neck pain and headaches.15
Herpes simplex virus. Back of the neck pain and headaches can be the first sign of the herpes simplex virus 2 . The journal Archives of Neurology reports that HSV-2 and neck pain are often connected. Recurring headaches and a stiff neck along with a fever usually appear before other symptoms of genital herpes.16
Neck Massage For Headache Pain Relief
One way to get rid of knots in the neck at the base of your skull is to give your neck a gentle massage. Massaging the back of your head, neck, and shoulders is a great way to ease the pain of a pinched cervical nerve.
According to Dr. William H. Blahd on WebMD, massage helps to release tension in your neck and shoulders to ease upper neck and lower head pain. Massaging also helps to increase blood flow to the painful area to get rid of pain quickly.17
How to massage the back of your neck with essential oils:
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Schedule An Appointment For Your Neck Pain With Disc
If you have neck pain and headaches, figuring out what is causing the pain can help you get relief. At DISC, our team of specialists at practices throughout the greater Phoenix, Arizona, area can diagnose your condition. We can then offer you relief tips for headaches caused by neck pain.
We always recommend the least invasive options first. You might see improvement with conservative solutions like heat and cold, relaxation techniques or medication. If your neck pain and headaches continue, surgery might be the best option to help you get the relief you want. To learn more, contact DISC today to schedule an appointment.