General Migraine/Headache Information
A migraine is a specific and severe type of headache in which 3/4 of sufferers are women and only 1/4 are men. Migraines come in a variety of types but commonly experienced symptoms are severe pain, sensitivity to light and sound, nausea, feeling hot or cold and vomiting. Some variations to migraines include only vision distortions/splintered vision but no pain, or they can mimic a one sided stroke. Migraine is a neurovascular problem meaning that the neurologic controls of the blood vessels is wrong. Caffeine often helps migraines because it shrinks blood vessels for the short term. People often tell me that their headaches are genetic – that their mother or sister has had migraines. But even if other family members have headaches, it is not a jail sentence. If you put get your head on straight, which is how we refer to it in my practice, the head and neck will heal and return to normal function.
Patients with migraines often have tension headaches as well. Tension headaches can be both severe and frequent. They often feel like a tight band around the head. The neck and shoulder muscles feel tight and exhausted; the head may feel heavy and difficult to hold up. Tension headaches are usually relieved by NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) but ongoing use of NSAIDS causes other physical problems like stomach pain and bleeding. Physical structure, muscles and posture need to be evaluated to get to the underlying cause of the ongoing headache. I also recommend a regular physical exam with blood and urine testing, eye examination, ear,nose and throat evaluation and dental examination to find out an additional physical causes.
Getting Your Head On Straight
What in the world does that mean? In my office, I offer a drug free method. My therapy includes attention to physical structure of the head and neck, muscle spasms, posture, eating habits, and home and work environments. I use specialized diagnostic testing to evaluate your headache pain.
So many of my patients tell me exactly where the problem is. They point to the base of their skull and say “It seems like it all comes from right here!” Then, they go on to comment that their neck is always tight, their head always feels heavy. These are the hallmark signs that your head is incorrectly placed on the spine. When your head is not on straight, it creates the cascade of problems that produces your headaches whether they are migraines or tension headaches.
What Causes Migraine Headaches?
The causes are many and complex.
Your initial consultation with Dr. Strauss will involve her really listening as you describe all the things you have already tried in the management of your headaches – what has worked, what hasn’t worked. What medication you have tried and now want to get rid of. All aspects of your life will be discussed, as we search for clues as to your headache causes. This will put us on the path to curing/reducing your headaches.
The Headache Doctor of Campbell – Offering a Migraine Relief Alternative to dangerous medication that merely masks your symptoms and does not cure the cause.