We know that chiropractic care has been effective against virtually every bodily pain that comes to mind, and that includes back and neck pain, joint pain, arm pain, leg pain and shoulder pain. However, when we think of headaches, we think about over-the-counter pain relievers as remedies or sequestering ourselves in a quiet, dark room until they go away.
The “ache” in headache is clearly a misnomer, because this is one ache that can be a real pain. Make that an excruciating pain, with the worst type of all being a migraine headache. There are very few of us who haven’t experienced a headache now and again, and, according to the World Health Organization, as many as half of the world’s population experience headaches every year. Severe headaches and migraine headaches aren’t worldwide killers on the scale of cancer, heart disease, strokes or even Alzheimer’s, but they can lead to strokes and even suicide.
A headache is just one of the disabling symptoms of migraine, which is a chronic neurological disease that is often debilitating, but they often keep coming back to make the lives of millions of people miserable, ruining some of life’s milestone events.
Headaches have been plaguing humankind since antiquity, and there were a variety of remedies before the easy availability of aspirin, Tylenol, Excedrin and Aleve. They included drilling a hole in the headache sufferer’s head, as was done in the 17th Century, to relieve the pressure in a “treatment” known as trepanation. Electroshock treatments are used even today in a ploy to expel headaches which probably stems from a practice in the 1700’s in which electric eels were used to generate the shock.
Because the pain was in the head and little, if anything, was known about the nervous system way back then, treatments was directly applied to the head as was the case with drilling into the skull and even cauterizing (burning into) the same in an effort to expel the devil or evil spirits believed to be trapped inside.
If you had your druthers, a pill would certainly be preferable to a drill. Even today many headaches sufferers are going out of their way to avoid analgesics and their innumerable side effects— one of which is another kind of headache known as a rebound headache. Too much medication, as it turns out, may create a worse ailment than it was meant to cure. You might say the same about over exposure to electric eels and too many holes drilled in your head.
We do know that one kind of headache, the tension headache, is relieved by relaxation techniques. For example, relaxing the jaw muscles by using chiropractic approaches was determined to neutralize whatever was triggering the headache.
Aside from chiropractic approaches, we can call upon therapeutic massage and acupuncture to make life a lot less tense and to bring a little more control into the disruptive impact of headaches. One targeted treatment protocol is medical massage with various modalities that aim at various painful conditions like headaches.
If you are looking for headache relief without any side effects, chiropractic care and therapeutic approaches could very well work for you. A number of case studies in recent years attest to their effectiveness in treating headaches, migraine headaches and even post-concussion headaches.