“My experience here at Farmingdale Physical Therapy West has been great. I have been coming for many years. Scott has helped me with the pain in my neck and I feel much better. I will tell friends and family to come here for therapy.” -Joel G.
The Connection Between Migraines and Neck Pain
Neck pain and migraines have a complicated relationship. In some cases an injury to the neck can lead to headaches, however, in other cases neck pain could be the result of a migraine or headache.
Unfortunately, one of the leading reasons as to why neck pain is often so difficult to treat is because it takes a long time before it is taken seriously. Waiting too long to address your neck pain following an injury can lead to severe pain—and can make the injury more difficult to manage. By the time people seek treatment for their neck pain and headaches, they’ve had problems lasting several months. The most common reasons people seek treatment for neck pain and headaches include:
- Chronic migraines and tension headaches
- Loss of full neck functionality, including limitations in turning one’s head completely
- Soreness in the neck, shoulder and upper back
- Stabbing pains, especially in the neck
- Pain radiating from the neck and shoulders to the fingertips
In addition to these physically painful symptoms, many who struggle from chronic headaches will develop additional symptoms, such as nausea, impeded vision, difficulty concentrating, severe fatigue, and even difficulty sleeping.
A Problem You Should Not Ignore
Patients who seek treatment from their neck-centered issues are often surprised to learn that some other problems they’ve been experiencing might be related. So even if you think you can “live with” not being able to turn your neck fully, other problems can accumulate.
In some situations, the cause of neck pain may be obvious, such as from a car accident, whiplash, or sports injury. However in other situations neck pain may be the cause of chronic tension headaches, stress, or a result of poor posture.
Working with a physical therapist to alleviate the core cause of your pain can significantly improve your quality of life, and may be able to eliminate migraines and tension headaches from being a major disturbance in your life. While in some cases chronic migraines are indeed the result of a medical concern or dietary issue, you may be surprised by how often the result is something that can be resolved with targeted exercises and stretches with an experienced physical therapist. In addition, you may find that the problems you’ve been having with shoulder mobility — or shooting pains down your arms and hands — often are related to your cervical spine.
Untreated neck pain can even lead to issues you might never expect, such as balance problems or trouble gripping objects. That’s because each of the nerve roots located in your upper vertebrae are connected to other parts of your body, from your biceps to each of your little fingers.
How can neck pain and headaches be treated?
Our physical therapists perform a thorough evaluation of your neck to determine your range of motion, strength, posture, and alignment. Sometimes the area where the pain is occurring is not actually the source of the problem. Often a limitation in movement above or below the painful area is causing excessive pressure or poor function of the painful area. With gentle hands-on manual therapy and special exercises, we can relieve your pain, restore motion and get you back to activities quickly without neck pain. Our team will also help you learn how to better position yourself during your daily life to avoid neck pain, including ergonomic and posture tips.
Get relief from your neck pain with physical therapy. Contact us at Bethpage & Ronkonkoma, NY centers so we can help you quickly resolve the debilitating neck pain you are feeling now – and to learn how to prevent it in the future.