Dr. Jennifer Sheppard, our Oklahoma City migraine chiropractor, often hear many patients use migraines and headaches as synonymous terms when describing their symptoms. Understandably, these symptoms appear like they’re the same. However, it’s crucial to understand that they’re two different health problems. In fact, not all migraines have headaches as a symptom. Learning to distinguish between the two conditions will help you find the right remedy to use. 

 

Headaches – A Brief Introduction

Headaches are quite a common problem, regardless of age or sex. It mostly manifests as a symptom of another health problem like meningitis or a brain tumor.

Many of our patients report pain in specific areas like the temples or the forehead. You may notice reduced pain after resting or when staying in a cool place. It could go away entirely or recur after a few days, depending on what type of headache you have. Here are some types of headaches:

  • Tension headaches

Arguably, tension headaches are the most prevalent type of headache. You can conveniently tell it apart from the others with the tightening sensation around your head. 

  • Cluster headaches

As the name suggests, this headache type occurs in series. The episodes are relatively short-lived, but they can cause you a lot of discomforts. They often occur in a specific pattern. 

  • Chiari headaches

A Chiari malformation may not sound familiar to many people because they only occur in 1 out of 1000. It causes headaches concentrated on the back of the head. The pain tends to intensify when you sneeze, bend over, or cough. 

  • Sinus headaches

Most of the time, sinus headaches get mistaken for a migraine attack. That’s because they have a few similar symptoms, such as watery eyes, runny nose, and pressure on the forehead. You can tell that it’s a sinus headache if you don’t have nausea, vomiting, or visual aura. These symptoms only occur if you have a migraine attack.  

  • Thunderclap headaches

This type of headache distinguishes itself with its severe pain and quick onset. Generally, headaches aren’t a cause for immediate concern. However, in the case of thunderclap headaches, you may need to seek help, especially if your condition stems from a subarachnoid hemorrhage, stroke, head injury, or aneurysm. 

 

Migraine Attacks and How They Can Affect You

Many patients seek the help of an Oklahoma City migraine chiropractor, mostly because, like headaches, migraines are also quite prevalent. Migraine Research Foundation reports that roughly 25 percent of households in the country include a member who has migraine attacks.  

Typically, it causes throbbing or pulsating pain that can last for hours or days. Unlike in a regular type of headache, migraines only affect one side of the head. It rarely occurs on both sides.   

Aside from debilitating headaches, migraines can also cause other symptoms, like: 

  • Painful temples 
  • Seeing flashing lights or losing eyesight temporarily
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting
  • Uncomfortable pressure inside an ear or behind an eye 
  • Unexplained sensitivity to particular scents or sound changes

 

Like in the case of headaches, migraines can also be categorized into distinct groups. Two of the most frequently observed types are migraines without and migraines without aura. If you have a migraine aura, you may be able to predict how soon an episode may start based on the following symptoms:

  • Problem in concentrating
  • Sudden food cravings
  • Mental fatigue
  • Neck pain or tingling face 
  • Visual disturbances like blurry vision or seeing flashes of lights

 

Managing Both Migraines and Headaches

Our Oklahoma City migraine chiropractor is committed to helping you find a way to free yourself from the clutches of migraines and headaches. To begin getting relief, you can try using some proven natural remedies. These may include the following:

  • Massages

These may help loosen stiff muscles, especially around the neck. A gentle and soothing massage can also improve sleep quality, a factor that contributes to the severity of a headache or migraine attack.  

  • Yoga exercises

Yoga exercises make a fantastic complementary remedy for migraines and headaches. These exercises primarily help release tension, maintain optimal blood flow, and manage stress and anxiety levels.

  • Staying in a dim or cool room

Many migraineurs report significant changes in their symptoms during a migraine attack when they stay in a dimly lit and cool place. 

  • Try using a hot compress

If you frequently suffer from tension or sinus headaches, we recommend applying a hot pack on the back or base of your head. This may help you in soothing the pain. 

  • Place a cold compress on your forehead

This might come in handy when you have a migraine episode. Apply the cold pack for about 15 minutes to experience less discomfort.

 

An Oklahoma City Migraine Chiropractor for Headaches and Migraines

Aside from applying the migraine and headache care methods we listed above, you may also find significant relief when you go to our Oklahoma City migraine chiropractor for help. With the help of a chiropractic adjustment, you can potentially get to the bottom of the issue.  

Studies have shown a strong link between neck bone misalignment and migraines. According to key findings, many migraineurs also have faulty neck bone alignment. When such a structural problem occurs, the brainstem suffers greatly, causing disruptions in the transmission of signals to your brain. The pressure from the misaligned neckbones also compresses and irritates the nerves and impedes the normal flow of blood and cerebrospinal fluid. Even the smallest degree of bone misalignment can cause massive impacts on your brainstem’s health. 

Get your spine and neckbones checked today to see if you have misalignments. More importantly, we encourage you to have the problem fixed so you can prevent further damage to your brainstem and the rest of the nerves. 

As your Oklahoma City migraine chiropractor, Dr. Jennifer Sheppard can help you manage your migraines or headaches more effectively. Get in touch with Precision Chiropractic at 405-378-3100 to book an appointment. You may also drop by at 10420 Greenbriar Parkway Oklahoma City, OK, or reach us through our website contact form.

 

To schedule a consultation with Dr. Sheppard, call our Oklahoma City office at 405-873-8134. You can also click the button below. If you are outside of the local area, you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.