Avenue Clinic

Avenue Clinic

Ouch! My Head…aches

Can you remember the last time you had a headache? or Do you have one today?

There are many different types of headache, some are more common than others. There are also a number of different treatment and management options available, which may be of benefit to you. Below is an example of the common types of headache that are experienced;

  • Migraine (with or without Aura)
  • Tension-type
  • Sinus
  • Cluster

All of these headaches can produce a variety of symptoms that may be located to different areas of the head, face and neck. Pulsing, throbbing, achey or a pressure in the head are all common ways to describe the pain we experience. With a large number of people suffering from these headaches, sometimes for many years, it can be difficult in finding a solution.

If you suffer with regular headaches, it may be a good idea to keep a headache diary to help identify;

  • the frequency, duration and severity of the headaches,
  • the effectiveness of any treatment interventions,
  • a basis to discuss management with your healthcare professional.

How can a manual therapy help my headache?

Firstly, manual therapy uses a non-invasive and non-pharmacological approach. As an Osteopath, a detailed case history is taken to help understand how the headaches are affecting you. Then, with your consent, you are examined to see how your musculoskeletal system is functioning and if it is the root cause of your headaches. This includes looking at all the muscles, ligaments and joints of the spine (including the neck), shoulders and sometimes even your jaw.  This is all to gather information to determine the underlying cause and the best way to treat and manage your headaches.

The treatments vary between patients, as it is dependant on headache symptoms and examination findings. However, they range from soft tissue massage, stretching and spinal mobilisation/manipulation to cranial and functional osteopathic techniques. Not all of these techniques will be required, as your symptoms will be monitored and re-examined after each treatment session.

Advice will also be provided and may include:

  • Appropriate daily stretching that is suitable for you,
  • Tips for improving sleep quality,
  • Ergonomic advice,
  • Sleeping position and pillow advice,
  • Reducing your stress levels.

Regardless of which type of headache you experience, it is important to consult with you GP if your are experiencing; a new headache, abnormal/worsening headaches or changes in the character of your headache.

For more information about headaches or if you wish to learn more about your headache and how to manage it better, please get in contact to discuss anything further.

Dan Bihet
Registered Osteopath
MSc Ost., BSc (Hons) ST

References & Links

Hsu, E.S., Argoff, C., Galluzzi, K.E., Leo, R.J. and Dubin, A. (2013) Problem-Based Pain Management. Cambridge University Press.



"I had heard about Avenue from a friend and after two appointments I noticed the difference. The frequent hiccuping has gone, he is much more contented and by early evening he is tucked up in his Moses basket."

Mrs D (for Osteopathy )

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