Chiropractic Treatment of Headaches

Are headaches normal?

Pain is a warning signal that something is not right. People do get headaches from toxins, alcohol use, and allergies. Those might be considered normal if they are infrequent and closely related to one of those triggers. However, frequent headaches, more than 1-2 times a month, would not be considered normal. Severe or debilitating headaches would also be abnormal and should be checked by a doctor.

What causes headaches?

There are many possible causes including physical trauma, stress, allergies, or chemicals. They can also be caused by spinal misalignments or restrictions in your neck. If the bones aren’t properly supporting your head or if the bones aren’t moving properly, headaches can occur. Spinal misalignments and restrictions can affect the nerves, muscles and the blood supply to your head.

Doctors of Chiropractic are specially trained to detect spinal misalignments and restrictions in your neck. This process starts with an examination of your spine including some tests to see what movements cause discomfort. This is often followed by x-rays of your neck to look at the spinal alignment and allow for a proper diagnosis.

What can you do to help my headaches?

There are many types of headaches, some like migraines occur when the arteries around your brain go into spasm (vascular headaches). Tension headaches tend to be all around your head and occur when the muscles go into spasm. Either type can be related to spinal misalignments or tension on the nervous system.

Billions of dollars are spent each year on over the counter medications and prescription medicine to dull the pain. While these medications provide temporary relief, they don’t address the underlying cause of headaches. Unfortunately, they can also cause adverse effects like stomach problems, kidney damage or liver damage. The more you rely on them the higher your risk of these adverse effects.

Gentle chiropractic adjustments coupled with therapies or exercises can provide lasting relief from headache pain.

How long will it take to get results?

Many people get relief quickly, others see progress over the period of a few weeks. How long it takes depends on several factors including:
How long you have had the problem
If you have arthritis or degeneration in your spine
Disc thinning in your neck
Any history of trauma, like whiplash injuries

Making changes in your body does take time. It takes time to retrain the ligaments and muscles.

I don’t have a headache now, should I still come in?

It’s frustrating when you take your car to the mechanic and he can’t find anything wrong with it. Good news is you don’t have to worry about that. Since the chiropractor is looking for the underlying cause of the problem through the case history, examination and x-rays, you don’t have to wait for your next headache to start getting it corrected. The best time to start is now.

What if chiropractic care doesn’t work?

Every headache has a cause. If we cannot find and/or correct the problems causing your headaches, the doctor will refer you to another specialist or for additional testing.

Dr. Patrick Lowe is a chiropractor in Louisville, Kentucky. You can reach this Louisville Chiropractor at