This week is National Headache Awareness Week

Alternative Treatments for Headaches of all Kinds

When it comes to headaches, the variety is amazing.  Here is a short list of the major groupings:  Tension, Migraine, Hormone, Cluster, Drug Rebound Headaches, Sinus, Organic (caused by brain tumor, aneurism or other abnormal brain pathology), Allergy,  Exercise Induced.  Obviously headaches are a very complex matter with many different approaches and solutions to consider.

Our view is that alternative, drug free treatments should always be tried first before resorting to medications with dangerous side effects.  These drugs treat the symptoms and do not cure the underlying and on-going causes of headaches.  Every effort should be made to identify the type of headache you have.  Then,  with the help your alternative health care professional,  seek non-toxic and holistic methods of headache reduction and elimination.  Lifestyle choices, sleep habits, exercise, posture and diet, plus your on-going levels of stress and tension all play a role.   Exploring and understanding your individual headache puzzle pieces is what we do.

Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care

This specialized branch of Chiropractic care focuses on correcting subluxations  (misalignments) in the upper cervical spine – in particular the 2 top bones of the spine.  As this area butts up against the brain stem, it is a critical spot.  You can imagine that even a slight misalignment could cause any number of problems,  in particular,  headaches.  Compression of nerves or ligaments in this area of the spine can be relieved by subtle and pain free adjustments by a specialist Chiropractor.

Other Solutions for Headaches

In addition to visiting an Upper Cervical Chiropractor, here are some other alternative medicine choices to consider:  acupuncture, massage and hypnotherapy.  The role of stress and tension in our busy lives is  under estimated.  Chiropractic, acupuncture and massage as well as hypnotherapy and meditation are all valid and proven strategies to combat daily stress loads.  Natural supplements can also play a useful role in headache reduction and treatment.

New Research Findings about Headaches

New research and information about headaches is constantly showing up in medical journals.  Some of the more recent developments to consider:

  • Special tinted lenses have been shown to help some migraine headache sufferers – in particular those with visual aura accompanying their headaches.  Recent MRI studies of the brain confirm these findings.


  • Botox (botulism toxin) injections are proving to be of little value in combating migraine pain – and at a cost of up to $1000 per dose,  such treatments are usually not covered by insurance. One has to wonder if this much advertised treatment is mainly the result of a P.R. campaign from the drug company involved…? Call us suspicious…
  • Proper sleep habits are now being shown to help with decreasing  the number of  migraine headaches in patients.  If Insomnia is your friend, you need to sign up with a sleep lab to learn to improve your sleep habits.
  • Kids with mild concussions can suffer headaches up to a year after the event.  With all the current concern about young athletes, this is an important thing for parents to be aware of.    After effects of even mild head trauma can cause significant effects in lost days at school, dropping out of sporting activities, inattention and other memory problems.  In our opinion, there is no such thing as an insignificant blow to the head.  These events should be treated seriously by parents and doctors.

Our role in headache diagnoses is to zero in on what type of headache you have and then explore ways to help you to reduce and/or eliminate the pain.  We take your headache seriously and have the time to spend with you to help find a solution.  It is possible to lead a headache free life.  It is the mission of The Headache Doctor of Campbell to help you achieve this goal.