Is nerve pain causing your chronic headaches?


When dealing with chronic headaches, it is important to determine the root cause to develop effective treatment. Because there are many different types of chronic headaches, diagnosing them can be challenging. Pain in one area can cause problems for another body part. Is it possible that nerve pain is causing your chronic headaches?

Causes of cervicogenic headaches

Cervicogenic headaches are related to strain and tension in the neck. There are several causes of cervicogenic headaches including:

  • Poor posture Sitting hunched over our desks at work all day puts our heads in a forward position that places a lot of strain on the muscles and nerves in our neck. Staring down at our smartphones or behind the wheel can also cause poor posture, which can cause chronic headaches.
  • Arthritis As we get older, the protective cushioning between vertebrae wears down. Osteoarthritis compensates for this by growing bone in place to help support and stabilize the neck. If the bone begins to grow into the spinal nerve in the neck, it can cause cervicogenic headaches.
  • Herniated disc If the cushion that protects between our vertebrae ruptures or tears, the inner jelly-like substance can leak out. If it leaks out toward the spinal nerve, it can place pressure on it causing headaches.
  • Whiplash While most commonly occurring during auto collisions, whiplash can occur any time the body is stopped suddenly from motion, causing the head and neck to snap forward and then back. This motion places tremendous strain on the spine and can cause damage to the spinal nerves.

In all of these cases, the condition places pressure on the spinal nerve. While it is important to have the root cause of your condition diagnosed by a physical therapist, nerve pain can definitely cause chronic headaches.

Physical therapy for chronic headaches

If you experience nerve pain and chronic headaches, physical therapy can help relieve your symptoms. The physical therapist will develop a personalized treatment plan designed to ease tension on the nerves that are causing your headaches. Contact one of our friendly staff today to set up your initial appointment.