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Tension Headache!

How can osteopathy help you manage your tension headaches?


A lot of tension headaches can come from tightness and shortening of the neck, trapezius, and muscles around the shoulder girdle. That's why we are seeing a huge increase

in cases since more of you are working from home with less than ideal office set ups!


Osteopathy will focus on these focal areas during treatment of tension headaches as well as a group of muscles called the ‘sub occipitals’. This treatment can involve deep soft tissue techniques and trigger point work to release restriction and increase movement at the neck.



On assessment, if a restricted joint in the Cervical spine (neck) is found then a spinal manipulation or a mobilisation can be performed by an osteopath to increase the range of motion in the joint and reduce tension in the tissues around that joint. Often an instant relief is felt after this style of treatment.


Additionally, some tension headaches can come from TMJ (temporal mandibular


joint) issues or what would feel like jaw pain . When assessing a patient experiencing a tension headache, the TMJ may be assessed and treated to relieve the tissues in the musculature of the face. Guarding in these muscles may be more prevalent in patients who have Bruxism (“Teeth grinders”). Examples of these muscles include the masseter, temporalis, frontalis, buccinator and the mylohyoid which is found under the chin.



What to expect during treatment to help tension headaches?


● Generally, treatment to help tension headaches with an osteopath will be slow, gentle and quite relaxing.

● If a trigger point is found, this may be slightly sore to begin with but after a few seconds of ‘inhibition’ (a technique which osteopaths use) the trigger point should ease and relief felt.

● At times the main light in the clinic room will be turned off to create the most relaxing environment possible for the patient.

● Patients sometimes feel slightly sleepy after treatment, so we encourage getting some fresh air before getting in your car and driving away or organising a lift to and from appointments. Additionally, bringing some water to have after treatment is encouraged.


Here at Select Therapy both therapists have had huge success with the treating and management of the very common but very frustrating tension headache.


We would be happy to help you at any time.


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