Nothing can bring a day to a screeching halt as much as a headache. They can be anywhere from a mild annoyance to leaving you out of commission for days. People regularly come to us because they are desperate and haven’t found a way to treat their own headaches.
We understand it isn’t always possible to make it in to us when you have a headache. Because of that, we want to show you five ways to treat your own headache. We will look at the following headaches:
Hopefully, one of these exercises will cure you of your headache. At a minimum though, one of these should help minimize your headaches until you can make it in.
One-sided headaches are exactly like they sound. They are distinctly on one side of the head only. They are always on the same side of the head. These can be tricky for people because they often feel that any stretch they do, needs to be done on both sides. With a headache like this, often the fix is a simple stretch to the same side. It’s the self stink test.
With the exercise you will bend your head forward and to the side of the headache. At the end of the stretch, your nose should be right by the top part of your shoulder. Hold the stretch for a second or two and then return to neutral. You will repeat this stretch ten times and do a set every 2 hrs.
You’re looking for the headache to lessen in severity or shrink in the area that it covers on your head. Discomfort during the exercise is ok as long as it lessens after the set of ten.
Forehead headaches are headaches that spread evenly across your forehead. They can also be headaches that switch sides of the forehead throughout the day. These headaches in a given moment can reside solely on the left forehead or the right, but in another instance reside on the opposite side. Remember, the one-sided headaches are always on the same side and never switch.
There are two exercises you can try for this headache: the “chin tuck” and the “double chin.” Gotta love my names right? For the chin tuck, it’s simple, you tuck your chin to your chest as far as you can. Just like the previous exercise, you’ll hold it for a second or two and then return to neutral. Repeat that 10 times and do a set every 2 hours.
The other exercise, the double chin, is a simple move, but people often struggle with the execution of it. The goal is to keep your head on the same plane and you pull your head back, giving yourself a double chin. The common error here is that people often look down as they do the exercise. To avoid this, pick a point straight in front of you and keep your eyes focused on it the whole time. Same rep scheme, 10 reps every 2 hrs.
Temple headaches are equal on both sides of your head, over your temples and/or around your ears. These headaches are often in people that unknowingly clench their teeth. One of the muscles that work while you clench your teeth is the temporalis; which covers most of the side of your head. It’s not a muscle that likes to chronically be in a state of contraction.
The exercise for this headache is finding the “resting position” for your jaw. The “resting position” is lips together, teeth apart, and tongue touching your upper teeth. In this position, it is impossible to clench. For this exercise, you have to focus on habit breaking/making.
The habit that needs to be broken is clenching. Your body has grown used to that and falls into it by default. The habit that needs to be formed is the resting-position. Set a repeating timer for every 30-45 minutes and make sure you’re not clenching but rather in the resting position. And don’t worry, at first it will seem like you are clenching more. You aren’t. You are just drawing focus to something you likely didn’t pay attention to before.
Ram’s Horns Headaches
Ram’s horns headaches are headaches that seem to wrap around the sides of your head. They can start either in the forehead or the back of the neck and wrap around the head forming a pattern resembling a ram’s horn.
These headaches are often caused by over-activation of the traps. This can be caused by stress, improper breathing or lifting, being cold, and more. Basically, anything that causes you to chronically have your shoulders in a shrugged movement or posture. That end of it can be more in-depth, but there is an exercise that can help you until we can dig into that more.
This unlike the one-sided headache will be done on both sides. You will simply stretch the head to one side 10 times followed by stretching it to the other side 10 times. To do this, picture placing your ear on top of your shoulder. One set of 10 to each side shoulder be done every 1-2 hrs.
Headaches bother a large percentage of the population and can be frustratingly difficult to find a cure. These are only a few of the many ways we can identify a cause and treat your headaches. The next time you have a headache try one of these exercises and see if it helps. Anytime a headache is worse or your neck feels stiff after a set of these exercises stop that exercise and try another or come in for further assistance.