A cervicogenic headache is caused by a problem in the neck.
Causes may include: multiple traumas to the neck, inflammation of the facet joints or degenerative disease.
Symptoms may include: steady, non-throbbing pain at the back and base of the skull, a sensation of a tight band around the head, pain radiating up the neck into the skull, or neck stiffness.
AMIT Explanation: Any injury to the joints (facets) and muscles of the neck, which may cause joints to inflame and muscles to become inhibited or dysfunctional. Once damage has occurred, the body attempts to stabilize the neck by tightening the muscles supporting the head. This constant tension restricts circulation and lymphatic drainage leading to pain and inflammation.
A tension headache is mild to moderate pain in the head; often a feeling like a tight band around the head is described. This is due to constant tightness of the muscles attached to the back of the head and into the neck and shoulders.
Causes may include: neck trauma, constant emotional or physical stress, problems with teeth/jaw, or low-grade sinus inflammation triggers.
Symptoms may include: dull, aching head pain, sensation of pressure across the forehead and back side of the head, or tenderness in scalp, neck, and shoulder muscles.
A migraine headache is throbbing or pulsing sensations in one area of the head. Early symptoms include aura and blurred vision occurring before or during migraine headaches. One may experience nervous system symptoms, flashes of light, sound and light sensitivity, nausea and vomiting, blurred vision, lightheadedness, fainting, speech problems, or vision loss. Attacks, untreated may last from four to 72 hours.
Medically, the causes of migraine headaches are unknown and often involve many triggers.
AMIT Explanation: Migraine headaches are a more critical condition to define. Concussions, low blood sugar problems, toxic exposure, tooth/jaw problems and hormone imbalances are the most common causes, and can be managed conservatively using AMIT methods. Less common causes are a defect in the heart called Patent Foramen Ovale (PFO), in which a small valve in the heart of the developing fetus fails to close off after birth, or a dissected vertebral artery, which is usually set up by severe trauma to the cervical spine. Both of these conditions can be a warning the person could be suffering from the early signs of what is called “Dissected Vertebral Artery” and predisposed to a stroke. This type of headache is multi-factorial and may need medical referral. This is why it is so important to perform an initial examination on all new patients.