What is Cervicogenic Headache?
Cervicogenic Headache is a secondary headache that occurs due to musculoskeletal or neurological dysfunction in the neck.
Its main source of referred headache is thought to be an irritation in the upper neck structures as they share the nerves that relay pain signals up to the head. It could be caused by a traumatic incident, arthritis, nerve irritation on the cervical spine, and other underlying medical conditions.
Some of the risk factors associated with cervicogenic headache may include but are not limited to the following:
- Occupations that involve a high amount of head postural changes such as hair stylists, forklift drivers and desk workers with dual-screen use
- Performing strenuous activities such as weightlifting
- Forward head posture
- Sleep deprivation and those that toss and turn in bed
- Current or previous neck issues
What is a common finding in people with cervicogenic headaches?
People with this condition usually complain of one-sided neck pain and associated headache. Commonly, the neck has a reduced range of motion due to pain and certain neck movement may exacerbate the headache and neck pain. Additionally, muscles around the neck such as the upper trapezius, levator scapulae, scalenes, and suboccipital muscles may be tight and tender with this condition.
How do you treat cervicogenic headache?
The physiotherapy treatment goal is to reduce pain in the neck. Physiotherapy can help with this condition by manual therapy such as neck mobilisation and soft tissue techniques. This may allow improvement in neck joints mobility and relief of pain. Physiotherapists can prescribe tailored exercises and stretches to reduce pain, and regain strength and range of motion in your neck.
Call us on 9749 5110 to book your appointment to get your pain under control.