By Paige Hrdlicka, PTA
Tension or cervicogenic headaches can cause symptoms of pain and tightness at the base of your neck. There are a group of small muscles at the base of your skull called suboccipitals. If these muscles are tight, they can cause this tension type of headache. The pain can wrap across the top of your head to your forehead, and sometimes the pain can be focused on one side more than the other. People often experience neck stiffness and light sensitivity with these types of headaches. They are typically the result of an injury, though neck pain can be spontaneous.
Treatment for cervicogenic and tension headaches can consist of manual release techniques, stretching, cervical spine strengthening, posture activities, and working on neck and thoracic spine range of motion. Symptoms may vary from person to person, and an evaluation from a skilled physical therapist would be best to determine the right exercises for you.
If you are experiencing some of these symptoms, here are 2 stretches and 3 exercises you can try at home to alleviate some of you pain:
Neck flexion and extension
Image from https://universityorthopedics.com/educational_resources/neck_exercises.html
Neck lateral flexion
Standing chin tuck
Still point inducer
Product avaialble at https://www.walmart.com/ip/Still-Point-Inducer-Relieving-Headaches-Helping-Reduce-Stress/823139858
You can also complete chin tucks while laying on the still point inducer.
If you suffer from these, PT may be able to help. Call 918-392-1482 today to schedule an appointment with a PT. We are one big team here at Tulsa Bone and Joint, and we would love to work with you to help find relief for all your orthopedic needs.