Neck pain and headaches often co-occur and are two of the most common reasons patients seek chiropractic care. Thus, it’s important for a doctor of chiropractic to conduct a careful history and examination to determine if the patient’s headaches and neck pain are indeed related or if the issues need to be addressed independently. Here’s the process most patients with a combination of neck pain and headaches can expect when consulting with a chiropractor.
Doctors of chiropractic start out with a past history that includes the following: 1) prior injuries or accidents; 2) family history, social history (including education level and occupation, sleep habits, tobacco/alcohol use, and more) 3) allergy history; 4) vaccination history; 5) current medication use to identify potential side effects; 6) review of your systems (cardiovascular, respiratory, ears/nose/throat, genito-urinary, and more).
The present history then looks at each complaint individually to determine onset, palliative, and provoking positions/activities/situations, quality of symptoms, radiation and location of complaints, severity of complaints (pain—right now, on average, at best and at worst), and timing (better in the morning or night, work-relatedness, hormonal shifts, or patterns).
The examination may include vital signs (blood pressure, pulse, respirations, height, weight, temperature, etc.); observation of posture, gait, movement, affect, facial grimace; palpation of muscles, trigger points, joint noise (crepitation), warmth; orthopedic tests that provoke an increase and/or decrease in pain/symptoms; neurological tests; and consideration for special tests like x-ray, blood tests, or specialty evaluation.
This information results in a working diagnosis from which a doctor of chiropractic can create a treatment plan for the patient. Commonly used approaches you can expect from your chiropractor may include manual therapies such as spinal manipulation (thrust and non-thrust types); mobilization (stretch-type); “drop table” methods; manual traction, trigger point, and other “soft-tissue” techniques; and modalities such as vibration, ice/heat, electric stim, ultrasound, and more. Additional self-care or at-home strategies may include specific exercise training, posture retraining, nutritional recommendations, and activity modifications.
Some patients may experience initial soreness following their first treatment but will typically feel improvements in pain and disability following a handful of visits, at which time their doctor of chiropractic may adjust the treatment plan or release the patient from care.
You may wonder, “Do I need an MRI scan of my brain or neck.” Also, if you feel arm pain it may indicate things are getting worse and may indicate a bulge on the disc or worse yet a herniated disc in your neck. Some people have a feeling of their “head aching.”
Regardless of the type, it can leave you feeling exhausted fatigued, nauseous, and even depressed. Some get severe pain behind the eyes. Persistent or worsening pain intensity and/or frequency necessitates a visit to see a professional.
Call me, Dr. Tim Harcourt, at (239) 278-3344 and mention this article for an awesome discounted first visit to include history, exam, and adjustment or Class IV high-intensity laser treatment.
At Coast Chiropractic Centers we look forward to providing relief to those suffering from any type of headache. Call me, Dr. Tim Harcourt, at (239) 278-3344 and mention this article for an awesome discounted first visit to include history, exam, and adjustment or Class IV high-intensity laser treatment.
If you are suffering from headaches that are affecting your quality of life and allowing you to enjoy Fort Myers Beach. Come see us at Coast Chiropractic Centers located on 7270 College Parkway.
Don't let headaches stop you from enjoying the beautiful SWFL! Dr. Dr. Tim Harcourt is here to give you the relief you need.
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