Headaches and Neck Pain

A study published in the Journal “Pain Medicine in May, 2022 looked at sources of neck pain and their relationship with headaches.  The study was titled “Sources of Cervicogenic Headache Among the Upper Cervical Synovial Joints Subjects with Single Headaches.”

What is a Cervicogenic Headache?

Cervicogenic headaches are defined as a pain syndrome in the face or head with an origin coming from the neck.  In other words, it is a headache that is caused by an issue with the joints and muscles in the neck.

These are of particular interest to us at Be Well Chiropractic because we are an Upper Cervical Chiropractic office.

What Was The Study?

The study looked at 166 patients from 2000-2004 in a clinic setting in Newcastle, Australia.  Researchers examined patients who were experiencing headaches, decreased motion in their neck, and associated neck pain.

Researchers used local anesthetic at different levels of the neck to determine what the source of the pain was.  For example, they would utilize a local injection at different spinal levels and note if there were reductions in both neck pain and headaches.

What Did They Find?

After conducting the experiment, researchers concluded that the most common cause of the pain syndromes was damage to the C2/C3 joints in the neck.  C2/C3 joints are about 1 inch below the base of your skull.

What Does It Mean?

Cervicogenic headaches are thought to be rare, however many of our patients present with them.

The top of your neck has a very complex network of joints, muscles, ligaments, and nerves.  This region is also where your trigeminal nucleus originates.  The trigeminal nucleus is the network center for the nerves that feel pain and discomfort in your face and neck.  If there is damage to the joints, muscles, and ligaments in this area it is thought to interfere with the function of the trigeminal nucleus leading to increased pain in the face and head.

This is why it is so important to visit a Chiropractor who deals specifically with the upper cervical spine and approaches it with the care and the specificity it requires.  Don’t just trust your neck to any Chiropractor or therapist who “manipulates” the spine.

How To Choose A Chiropractor

When searching for a Chiropractor for yourself or a friend/family member, it is vital to seek out one who has been trained in specific techniques to address complicated issues especially related to the Cervical spine.  The Chiropractic adjustment should be precise and specific, and not just a bunch of cracking noises.  This is why we have adopted an upper cervical approach.

To learn more about Upper Cervical Chiropractic and to schedule a consultation and exam, schedule here https://bewellchiropracticpc.com