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Headaches and Jaw Pain

We have all have suffered from at least one headache or migraine in our lifetime. Whether it is pounding, throbbing, or searing pain – headaches are no fun.  We all tend to get them every now and then, but some people deal with chronic headaches and migraines. This can take a toll on your emotional state and can effect work, finances, social relationships, and your overall well being

What causes a headache?

First off, there are many different types of headaches with many different factors involved. It is almost impossible to narrow down one cause to a headache. The most common type of headache I see are tension headaches which are mostly due to overactive/under active musculature around the neck, base of the skull, temples, and jaw. It can present as dull pain or pressure around the forehead or at the back of the head and neck.

I almost always find a neck and jaw relationship with these folks. I find many of us are clenching or grinding our jaws, without us even realizing it! Or may have had a head/neck injury in the past that was never taken care of.

Emotional stresses and trauma, diet, sleep, lack of exercise, too much exposure to technology (computers and phones) and/or your menstrual cycle can all be factors relating to the cause of a headache or migraine.

 

Is Your cell phone causing your headache??

One particular factor I find most of us may not think about is our exposure to blue light. Blue light is a specific frequency of light that is emitted from our electronic devices: computers, laptops, cell phones, LED and fluorescent lighting and so on.

Blue light has one of the shortest, highest energy wavelengths in the visible light spectrum.  Because they are shorter,  these wavelengths flicker more easily than longer, weaker wavelengths. This kind of flickering creates a glare that can reduce visual contrast and affect sharpness and clarity.

The flickering and glaring may be one of the reasons for headaches since many of us spend hours sitting in front of a computer screen or other electronic device.  

Our eyes do not have natural filters that give us enough protection against these blue light rays. 

Blue light can also cause an inhibition of the production of a hormone called melatonin, which regulates our desire for sleep.  Ever wonder why you have restless nights where you can’t seem to fall asleep? May be you have been looking at a phone or computer screen for too long!

Chiropractic and Relief from Headache/Jaw Pain

An adjustment may help to improve alignment of the spine which in turn may help to reset the musculature surrounding the head and neck.

However, I tend to take a bigger look at how well your motor control center in your brain can efficiently find connections to specific muscles around the head, neck, and jaw. Finding muscles that are over working or under working can help correct imbalances and compensation patterns in the head and neck. This will allow areas of high tone to become calmer which may lead to a reduction in headaches. Tightness and tension are caused by misinformation being sent to that area. Testing these areas and discovering what is actually over working or under working will guide what treatment will be.

I find the jaw to be a very high value structure in our body. We clench when we are mad, we clench when we are stressed, we clench when we work out to find more power,  AND we may be clenching when we are sleeping! The TMJ is getting a ton of action, more than some of us may realize! There are a couple muscles in and around the jaw that can be released in order to help this over worked joint to finally relax. This may even help decrease your headaches and/or migraines.

 

Come find out today what I can do for you about your headache and jaw pain!

 

 

 

 

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