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Migraines And The Brain Stem


The theory of blood vessels constricting as the cause of migraines came about because of their throbbing nature. However, there hasn’t been any hard evidence to prove this. In fact, the evidence shows dilation of blood vessels does not coincide with the pain of migraines. Rather, it is the end result of head pain. When it happens, the major blood vessel only enlarges by 9%, which is not enough to cause head pain according to experts.

The current theory of migraines is that of a sensitized brainstem, called the trigeminocervical nucleus. When testing for the trigeminocervical complex, it has been seen that migraines, headaches, menstrual headaches, and cluster headaches all show signs of a highly sensitized brainstem.

Why does the brainstem become super sensitive? There can be a few reasons this happens. One of the most serious is a dysfunction in the upper neck , possibly due to poor posture. Evidence shows if people work at strengthening their neck muscles, and restore proper motion in their upper neck, they often have fewer and less intense migraines.
If the brainstem becomes amped up enough, it can begin to cause problems. If this is continuous — day after day, minute after minute — you may begin to develop a trigger system. This means you may not have the same sensory input as a normal person, but you will experience sensory input more intensely. In other words, the brain perceives a small amount of pain as major, intense pain.

It’s quite amazing the number of headaches and migraines that can be attributed to a problem in the neck. However, studies have shown that by correcting the problem that is causing the headaches or migraines, many patients see these conditions begin to improve. This is true for migraines, sinus headaches, menstrual headaches, tension headaches, and many others.
In my own experience, I have had the most clinical success, time and time again, in helping people who are suffering from headaches and migraines.  If you are a headache or migraine sufferer, structural chiropractic could very well be the solution for you!

I would be very happy to help.

Dr Craig

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