So you’re sitting at your desk and you feel a bit of tightness in your neck. Then, as the day wears on, you have a twinge in your head…and it turns into a full blown headache! What do you do now? Why is this happening? Read on for a few ideas on what may be causing your headaches.
Although there can be many different triggers for headaches, one significant trigger can be poor posture. How, you might ask?
As mentioned in our previous blog post about the effects of poor posture, several factors can come from being slumped over for a long period of time:
-As you sit and slouch, your head comes into a forward head position – and effects the curvature of your spine. As the upper part of your neck is forced to pull back, this can create tension in the suboccipital muscles of your neck – the muscles that attach to the base of your skull.
-As these muscles become more tight, they can compress on the nerves in your upper neck region, and this can send pain into your head…creating a headache!
So, what can be done about this? Here are a few quick tips to help you ease those headaches:
1. Correct your sitting posture: Try as best you can to have a good work set up. This means a support behind your back, such as a simple rolled up towel, your feet flat on the floor, and try to be as close to your computer as possible.
2. Squeeze those shoulder blades together: This will not only start to strengthen your upper back muscles, but also give you a reminder to improve your posture! Try about 5-10 repetitions every hour.
3. Do some chin tucks: tucking your chin in will help reduce the 2 curves in your neck that have been exacerbated by poor posture. Check out the video below to see how to perform this. Try it about 5-10 times, and you can do this several times a day as long as your don’t have pain with it.
As always, if any of these cause an increase in pain or discomfort, please discontinue the exercise. If your pain or headaches persist, give us a call – we would love to help you. In addition to these exercises, the right type of hands on manual therapy can really help you. With a combination of the proper manual therapy, exercises, and stretches, you can say goodbye to your headaches!
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Thanks for reading, and I hope this information is helpful. Please feel free to reach out to me via e-mail or phone if you have any questions at all!
Cheers to your health,
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Shaheen Siddiqui, PT
Specialist Physical Thearapist