By Dr. Kyle Gulledge
Headaches can dramatically impact a person’s quality of life; they can range from a minor discomfort once or twice per year to daily intense migraines. 50% of people report having headaches at some point each year and up to 25% of women report having migraines. There are two main types of headaches. The first is called primary; this is when the headache is the cause. For example, a migraine headache is its own thing, it may be triggered by something but it is not part of another disease. A secondary headache is caused by something else. For example, a stroke or infection. The vast majority of headaches are primary, they are not caused by another disease or trauma. This will be our focus today.
Frequency is a huge variable in headaches. Someone may only have headaches intermittently, for example, after a night on the town, while others suffer more chronically. Many people have headaches multiple times per week or even daily. These individuals are robbed of quality of life due to the limitations from pain.
Physical Causes of Headaches
The structures such as muscles, nerves and bones of the neck and head are very delicate and numerous. There are a lot of nerves here and any disruption to the structures of the body in this area can cause a lot of havoc in the nerves, muscles and even the brain. Old injuries can build up and put pressure here. Old and newer falls or car accidents can do the same. Prolonged sitting and muscle tightness and or weakness are issues as well. Often times on X ray we find structural issues that are clearly causing problems. Many doctors might say the X rays look normal as there is no fracture, tumor or dislocation. What they may not understand is how important optimal alignment is in that area of the body. We now know how many nerves exist in this part of the body and these nerves are constantly sending signals back to the brain. If there is stress, inflammation or tension in these nerves, there will be problems and very often headaches.
We find when these issues are taken care of through a carefully laid out plan to correct the problem, the problem will usually go away. These plans usually involve treatment from our medical staff as well as our chiropractic and rehab staff. When these providers work together, we see amazing things happen.
Chemical Causes of Headaches
In stubborn cases, we often have to uncover the chemical component to headaches as well. Food sensitivities can be hard to pinpoint unless you have a thorough blood test. This along with a toxicity screening done by our medical staff can help us find hidden sources of stress and inflammation in a patient’s body. When these are removed, the body is unburdened and we find headaches along with other forms of discomfort are greatly improved.
Many people use drug therapy. This can offer symptomatic relief, but if not coupled with a plan to treat the cause, it’s only masking a problem. On top of this, the drug is also causing a chemical stress to the body. Many people we speak with say they learn to live with them. However, once we have helped resolve their pain, every person reports they are quite happy to be free from their headaches.
Tips to Reduce Headaches:
Here are some things you can do on your own to reduce your headaches.
• Drink more water.
• Eat a diet of mostly vegetables and meat: this can reduce inflammation and congestion and chemicals in some processed foods that can cause headaches.
• Get your vitamin D up to optimal levels: this can lower inflammation.
• Start your day with a 15-20 minute walk: this lowers stress levels and relaxes your body.
• Begin a weight training routine that is balanced and includes plenty of back and upper back exercises.
• Don’t sit too much. If you sit at work, stand for a minute every half hour and move your spine.
• Get 8 hours of sleep per night.
If that’s not enough, get to the cause of the problem. We often see people that have enough going on in their bodies that the above advice isn’t enough. We have a very high success rate with these and even very stubborn headache cases.
You Can Be Free From Headaches!
The bottom line is this…our bodies were designed to be vibrant and well. The vast majority of people don’t have to live with chronic pain. If you can uncover the cause of your issue and fix it, you stand a very good chance to feel much better. If you have chronic headaches that you’d like to get rid of, give our office a call at 913-338-1112. We offer free consultations and will let you know if we can help you. Visit our website for additional information at www.TrueHealthKC.com.
Dr. Kyle Gulledge
Dr. Kyle Gulledge is a leader in the shift towards true health care. He believes that health care, in its truest sense, is about helping others live without symptoms and without limitations on their health.
He is a firm believer that the body has the ability to heal from most any condition naturally.
While attending Kansas University for a degree in Exercise Physiology, Kyle participated in competitive weightlifting. He suffered an unexpected shoulder injury and was forced to seek help. The care he received from chiropractic changed his competitive career as well as his outlook on health care. Dr. Kyle then went to Cleveland Chiropractic College to earn his Doctorate of Chiropractic. While there, Kyle was named to Who’s Who among Colleges and Universities, earned a Clinic Service Award, a Clinical Excellence Award, and graduated Magna Cum Laude.
Dr. Kyle has pursued his passions of studying Functional Neurology, Applied Nutrition, and the blending of consciousness in health care. He feels that health can be achieved through a balance of physical, chemical, emotional, and spiritual factors.
11879 W. 112th Street, Suite 100
Overland Park, KS 66210