Upper Cervical Spine Disorders: Anatomy of the Head and Upper Neck
Question. I'm a 23 year old woman and have been experiencing pain right where the base of my skull and the top of my neck meet. The pain is a dull ache. Although the symptoms of occipital neuralgia can vary from person to person, most patients will experience pain along the neck where it meets the skull, as well. The Craniovertebral Junction: Where Your Head and Neck Meet Head and upper neck disorders may be called craniovertebral (or.
So, what can you do to relieve headache pain caused by the suboccipital muscles?
Before reaching for a pain relief medication, try the following steps. If you are straining to read, or keep tilting your head up and down to use those off-the-shelf readers, you may need a new pair of glasses. Simply raising your computer monitor or obtaining a document stand will reduce repeated head tilting that can strain the occipital muscles.
Also, if your back is positioned to your office door, requiring you to crane your head around repeatedly, place a small mirror over your desk so that you can see out the door without turning around. Correct your rounded shoulders and forward head carriage. Consider joining yoga, Pilates or tai chi.
- A quick lesson to help you learn more about your craniovertebral junction condition.
- Eliminate the Cause of Your Tension Headache
- Treating Tension Headaches Without Medication
All of these disciplines are great forms of exercise and all can help to improve posture. Also, consider consulting a physical therapist, chiropractor, or movement therapist for exercises that are tailored to your need. Treating Tension Headaches Without Medication Try applying a hot pack to the base of the head for minute intervals.
Stuff two tennis balls into a sock and tie it off tightly. Now, lie on your back on the floor. The pain is caused by irritation or injury to the nerves, which can be the result of trauma to the back of the head, pinching of the nerves by overly tight neck muscles, compression of the nerve as it leaves the spine due to osteoarthritis, or tumors or other types of lesions in the neck.
Localized inflammation or infection, gout, diabetes, blood vessel inflammation vasculitisand frequent lengthy periods of keeping the head in a downward and forward position are also associated with occipital neuralgia.
The Complete Headache Chart - The National Headache Foundation
In many cases, however, no cause can be found. A positive response relief from pain after an anesthetic nerve block will confirm the diagnosis. Treatment Treatment is generally symptomatic and includes massage and rest. In some cases, antidepressants may be used when the pain is particularly severe.
The Complete Headache Chart
Other treatments may include local nerve blocks and injections of steroids directly into the affected area. Prognosis Occipital neuralgia is not a life-threatening condition. Many individuals will improve with therapy involving heat, rest, anti-inflammatory medications, and muscle relaxants. Recovery is usually complete after the bout of pain has ended and the nerve damage repaired or lessened.