“I’ve had headaches for the last year. Soft tissue work helps a bit but the pain returns soon after I stop. I have tried PT and Chiropractic help, but nothing is working..”
Said a frustrated Tom (age 32) who lives in Dallas, who started to have headaches and nerve pain in his head after doing CrossFit classes almost 1 year ago…
He’d been suffering from that deep ‘toothache’ like feeling in his head and when it is bad he will have nerve pain on both sides of his head.
He had shoulder issues about 1 ½ years ago and started to notice after his workouts his head would hurt and now he has pain in the head daily.
Does this sound familiar to you?
Are Your Headaches Linked To Your Neck And Shoulder Issues?
Headaches are common with neck and shoulder issues.
Most people do not even look into the shoulder as a problem, but it’s common to have tightness around the shoulder that is ignored.
And this is one of the common places I have to look to help people who have headaches and even neck pain…
Because of the tightness in your shoulder, you compensated by elevating your shoulder when overhead strengthening and sitting and working on the computer.
There are many misconceptions today about how you should fix frequent headaches.
Unfortunately, like Tom, I’ve found too many people have become victims of bad medical advice when treating their neck pain and headaches.
This often leads to months (even years) of unnecessary neck and headache suffering.
“I’ve tried rest, chiropractic, massage, acupuncture, and nothing has helped. I’m still in pain daily, but mostly when I sit long or work out now. I don’t want to be on medications my whole life, please help!”
At the time he’d injured himself during his CrossFit workout, he was working out 6 days a week, was looking great, feeling confident, and loving life…
But when his neck pain and headaches struck, it didn’t just take away his ability to exercise…
Sitting, driving, bending, working, and doing normal daily tasks wore on him.
He had tried EVERYTHING:
He tried Physical Therapy at another location doing soft tissue work, traction, and stretching.
He tried Acupuncture.
He even tried doing chiropractic care, but nothing was giving him any lasting relief.
It had gotten to the point where she considered taking heavy doses of medication, but he was fearful of how he was going to be able to work and drive with the medications.
Why Aren’t Your Headache Treatments Working?!
Tom, like so many others, had fallen into the trap of trying to fix the ‘symptom’ of pain.
He had spent countless hours (and dollars) on Physical Therapy, Massage, Chiropractic, and Acupuncture trying to fix the symptoms and not getting to the source of the problem…
Even though those treatments temporarily got rid of the pain, it was making his injury worse as it would return.
The headache treatments, Tom, and many people try don’t address the root cause of the problem, so any relief is short-lived and ultimately doesn’t work.
Why Do Headaches Get Worse?
Like ‘picking a scab’ that is trying to heal…
The more he tried to stretch and massage the NECK the more irritated it became…
But TOM was FINALLY able to find relief by focusing his attention on correcting postures, focusing on the shoulder and the neck to take the strain off the upper neck (instead of doing treatment only on his neck.)
What do I mean by taking strain OFF the upper neck?
You can choose to believe it or not, but everything in our body is truly “connected.”
And a combination of old injuries, poor posture, and bad habits all placed tension and pressure ON the neck…
and THIS was causing his headaches.
This is a phenomenon known as ‘compensation’…
How To Stop Headaches Naturally – Tom’s Story
For Tom, we identified FOUR areas of his body that had been largely ignored since he’d been SO focused on trying to fix the ‘symptom’ of his headaches.
His Pectoralis and Shoulder were tight (Because he lacked full movement in his shoulder, created compensation with arm movements, which can create ‘pulling’ on your neck. And for Tom, it came from tons of working out, driving, and sitting)
Weakness in the lower scapular muscles. This created compensation and elevation of his right shoulder with sitting and working out and doing any type of overhead activities.
Lack of mobility in his neck – This was creating muscle spasms to protect his upper neck. This made it impossible for him to look down and turn his head without pain. By the way, most people move the wrong way to alleviate the spasms…
Tightness and tension on his ‘good side’ which was always ignored. He had spent the better part of almost 1 year ‘stretching’ his painful side, but since he never did anything for her non-painful side, it created more of an ‘imbalance’.
And by addressing these problems with a mixture of:
Hands-on therapy techniques to mobilize the neck and shoulder which then released the tightness and allow more mobility in his spine. The lack of hip mobility creates the spine to compensate (which is never addressed)
Getting rid of old scar tissue and ‘knots’ in the muscles along his right shoulder and regaining strength on the right side. With all this tightness and lack of mobility, your muscle will not fire to get stronger.
Alleviating the tension of the angry, spasmed muscles by doing usually the one motion that is right for your body. You can see the change in your range of motion often in 1-3 visits. You get to the source of the problem and the spasms go away.
Teaching her the proper body mechanics with sitting and correcting the proper form with his ‘exercises’
The muscles in his neck started to let go…
And FINALLY, he found relief…
…and the neck pain? The headaches?
it simply MELTED away…
And as a result?
He’s back to exercising with NO pain (and with much better form and body awareness)
Did NOT need any form of injection or medication
He could finally drive to work, run, work out, and just get back to living his normal life without feeling the constant burden and stress from his headaches.
By taking a big-picture, full-body approach to rehab, Tom was finally able to heal.
Could YOUR ‘headaches’ be coming from somewhere else in your body?
If you’ve been struggling with headaches for longer than a month and want to learn more about what these ‘root causes’ could be…
You will have a private session with a movement specialist here at mPower Physical Therapy where you’ll get the chance to:
Share your concerns, problems, and frustrations you may be having
Meet us in person, to see if we’re a good fit before you ever decide to work with us
A glimpse into your own ‘mobility profile’ to help you see exactly what could be causing your injury, and tell you the possible ‘root cause’ of WHY you may be hurting.
Final Chance – The Surprising Link Between Shoulder Pain, Neck Pain, And Headaches
Final chance to register for our fast-approaching event on the 21st of March 2023 at 18:00.
We are hosting an online event, which you can attend for free, where you can learn more about how to stop neck pain, shoulder pain and headaches without pills or endless rest.
In this completely free event, you can discover 3 powerful strategies for fast pain relief without medication!
Download Our Free Neck And Shoulder Pain Report
If you want more advice for your neck, shoulder or headache issues right now, download our FREE report where you can discover 6 Tips To Eliminate Neck And Shoulder Pain
100% free, packed with proven expert advice, and it could be in your email inbox within the next minute!
More Help For Headache Sufferers
Listen to one of our Podcasts such as What Are The Causes To My Chronic Headaches? and Headaches, Neck And Shoulder Pain – How They Are Linked