Tension Headaches in Happy Valley

While there are many types of headaches, often there is a physical component that is either the cause of the headache or a symptom of the headache. Periods of heightened tension caused by injuries like whiplash, carrying heavy backpacks, driving long distances, poor sleep, or just by stressful work or life events can be enough to cause a chain of symptoms that result in headaches.

  • Tension headaches are common symptoms of neck and shoulder pain, usually presenting on both sides of the head. They may be the first symptom you feel or remember despite having other underlying factors that caused them to start. Physical therapy is particularly well suited to resolve these symptoms and treat underlying conditions to prevent them from becoming a recurrent problem.
    • Treating postural and alignment issues alone without careful consideration of the function that resulted in a change in posture is an incomplete treatment for this condition. Combining manual techniques with skill training and activity modification is the most common path to lasting relief.
  • Migraine Headaches are a blend of physical irritation and neurologic input that become noxious, resulting in pain. They commonly cause changes in vision, and other sensations. They can be triggered by many different things including underlying medical conditions, exposure to persistent noxious stimulus, infections, changes in medications or other stimulus.
    • They must be carefully screened and monitored to assess the need for further referral but are often successfully managed by patients independently with Physical Therapy based interventions, independent strategies and patient education.
  • Cervicogenic Headaches feel like the pain wraps over your head and just might cause your eye to pop out and fly around the room. There are three main culprits that commonly cause this type of pain, the upper trapezius, levator scapulae, and suboccipital muscles. These powerful muscles not only play a large role in the posture of your neck, but assist in carrying, lifting and protecting your neck from injury. However, when they are improperly used they can compress and irritate the extensive network of nerves in the back of your neck and into your scalp, causing persistent and intense headaches.

If headaches have been interfering with your life, call us today to get started on a plan of care that works for you. Ascent Physical Therapy is conveniently located off Sunnyside Road in Happy Valley. We also love treating our neighboring communities of Damascus, Gresham, Clackamas, and Sandy at our top rated physical therapy clinic!