Cervicogenic Headache

How do I know if my Headache is coming from my neck?

There are many different types of headaches with one of the most common being a Cervicogenic Headache. By definition, a Cervicogenic Headache is a headache originating from the cervical spine (neck).

To determine if your headache is coming from your neck a physiotherapist will do a number of tests. These include looking at your range of movement, testing your strength and feeling through the muscles and joints in your neck. There is very strong evidence available now correlating these tests with Cervicogenic Headaches.

What causes a Cervicogenic Headache?

The cervical spine is a very complex structure and is comprised of 7 vertebrae each joined to the one above and below, muscles, ligaments, nerves and blood vessels. A Cervicogenic Headache is caused by compression of the top three vertebrae of the neck. This compression can be caused by things such as sustained postures (such as sitting at a desk or computer for an extended period of time), overactive or tense muscles and/or from trauma.

Common symptoms of a Cervicogenic Headache can include; neck pain (with one side often being more severe), restricted range of motion (particularly rotation and looking up) and tenderness to touch.

How do I treat my Headache?

Cervicogenic Headaches respond very well to treatment by a Physiotherapist. While treatment will vary from person to person, the main principles will address range of motion, muscle imbalance, postural correction, ergonomic review and a home exercise routine.

If you or someone you know is suffering from headaches, make an appointment to see one of our Physiotherapists today.