Headaches

Headaches Specialist
Most people will experience a headache at some time during their lives, however, some people experience more severe and/or persistent headaches than others. In some cases, headaches may even be debilitating. The clinicians at First Team Medical Clinics offer a comprehensive treatment plan to patients struggling with headaches in Beavercreek, Ohio and the surrounding area.

Headaches Q & A

First Team Medical Clinics

What types of headaches can occur?

There are several different types of headaches. The most common types of headaches are migraines and tension headaches. A migraine is a severe headache that may last for many hours or even days if the patient doesn’t receive treatment. Migraines usually affect only one side of the head at a time, and they commonly cause throbbing pain, nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, and sensitivity to sound.

Tension headaches characteristically affect the entire head, but commonly start in the back of the head and radiate to the forehead. They cause a dull aching, feelings of tightness, and tenderness in the shoulders and scalp. Tension headaches aren’t usually as severe as migraines, but they can still be painful and disruptive for patients.

What causes headaches?

The exact cause of most headaches is not known. However, tension headaches typically occur because of stress and muscle contractions. Migraines, on the other hand, occur because of a change in the way the trigeminal nerve interacts with the brainstem. In most cases, migraines occur after specific triggers, such as changes in the weather, consumption of specific foods, hormone fluctuations, and emotional stress. Other source of the cause of a headache may be associated with repetitive stress activities, misalignment of the neck and spine, poor posture, and vitamin deficiencies.

How does First Team Medical Clinics treat headaches?

FTMC offers several different types of treatment for patients with frequent headaches. Some of the treatments the clinicians of FTMC may recommend include:

Corrective exercises - Corrective exercises can address weak muscles and bad posture habits that may contribute to the development of headaches.

Trigger point injections - Trigger point injections contain medication that alleviates pain. These are small, localized areas of spasm within muscle tissue that can cause significant pain. An active trigger point can cause constant pain whether your using the affected muscle or not. A latent or dormant trigger point may only produce tenderness when you press directly on the area. Our medical clinician may administer these injections in specific locations on the body to relieve pain from headaches. Multiple trigger point sites can be injected in one session.  Improvement typically occurs after just one injection.  But you may require repeated injections into the same trigger points sites for optimal results. Pain from the injection is very minimal to non-existent and certainly much, much less discomfort than that caused by the trigger point itself.

SPG Blocks – The Sphenopalatine Ganglion (SPG) is a group of nerve cells that is linked to the trigeminal nerve, the main nerve involved in headaches. The link between the SPG and the trigeminal nerve is important in head pain. The application of local anesthetics (or numbing medications) to block or partially block the SPG, this can be helpful in reducing head and facial pain. The device used is a small catheter, or small thin plastic tubes that are inserted into the nasal cavity. There are no needles involved and it is quick and safe. The device delivers numbing medication to the SPG to help treat headache and facial pain. The day of the procedure you should be able to travel to the office and drive home afterwards. You will remain seated during the procedure and takes between 10-20 seconds—you can leave after the procedure is completed.

The most common side effects are all temporary, including numbness in the throat, low blood pressure, and nausea. If you do experience throat numbness, this should not last more than a few hours, and is related to swallowing a small amount of the numbing medication. During this time, it is safest if you avoid eating or drinking anything to avoid the risk of choking. Nasal bleeding or infection has been reported in some cases. Rarely, a temporary increase in pain has been reported.

Spinal manipulation - Many people with frequent headaches have problems with vertebral malposition in the spine, especially in the neck. Spinal manipulation can resolve these issues and aid in the prevention and treatment of headaches.

Can FTMC treat an active headache?

First Team Medical can treat patients who are currently experiencing a headache, as well as, those who are hoping to prevent future headaches.

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