Headache and Massage

SCM trigger point referal pattern

Headache. What a pain!

Here we go with another Melbourne Thai Treatment Blog post.

Today we are going to talk about headaches and massage.

4.9 million Australians experience migraine.

Migraine is a specific type of headache, so consider that the number stated above is still a small figure.

In fact, who did never experience a headache before?

And as you may think, headaches are not just the result of a heavy drinking night, or of lack of water (which is why you get headaches after a heavy drinking night the way), but often headaches are there because of tight muscles.

Wait, what?

Yes, you did read right.

Muscle tensions are strictly correlated to headaches.

How we can define then if the headache comes from muscle tension?

So in order for this to happen, the muscle responsible for referring its pain up to the head must be tight, contracted, and loaded with trigger points.

As massage therapists, especially in the first consultation session, we would ask about headaches and if there are any, “where about do you feel the headache”?

Indeed, the answer to this question is most luckily the give to know what’s going on with your muscle.

What we would do next, then, is assess your posture, looking for any muscular-skeletal unbalance, and then we would assess the Range of Motion.

If the ROM show up to be limited on the muscle that we believe is responsible for the pain in the head, then most luckily we are halfway through the solution.

I do say halfway through, a single massage session either Thai Massage, Remedial Massage and or MLD is maybe not enough to release all the tension that is in needs to be alleviated to eradicate the headache.

Said so, no journey start, without doing the first step, isn’t it?

On the other hand, headaches can be what is also called “RedFlag”.

Especially if the client has a clinical history of stroke, a recent car accident or recent head trauma, or blurred vision.

If that’s the case, the next step is referring the client to a GP immediately for further investigation.

But let’s get back to the muscle tension.

As already mentioned in another blog post, the Occipital muscle can have headache type of pain in the lower section of the posterior side of the skull.

If we then look into the area of the skull that seat above the ear, could be more tension from the Upper trap or Levator Scapulae.

Splenius cervis can refer to the medial superior side of the head.

Splenius capitis to the middle top side of the head.

Sternocleidomastoid indeed can refer to the frontal lobe of the skull.

SCM trigger point referal pattern
Photo Credit: www.triggerpoints.net

Now, all these muscles are seating on the neck and throat, and from above the shoulder.

Who in the modern days has no major tensions in these body parts?

What other activities can help in keeping headaches at ease?

Well, there are other things that complimentary to massage can help with.

  • Exercises
  • Keep yourself hydrated
  • Good posture when seating and standing
  • Good variety of food as diet intake
  • Wearing glasses if needed.
  • Meditation for stress management

In conclusion, headache is a really common problem for all Australians, women and men.

Don’t wait for your symptoms to get worst, you may don’t need to take medicine all the time you have a headache, as the medicine will just numb the symptom but would not sort out the problem.

If you are keen to learn more about where your headache is maybe from, book in today your next Massage Session.

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