Cervicogenic headache (CGH) is usually described as a constant dull headache that can sometimes grow in intensity and cause extreme discomfort. The symptoms of this condition are experienced only on one side of the face or head and are referred to as side-locked.
The pain is sporadic in nature and might begin as a dull ache in one side of the neck pain, head, or face.
The neck might feel stiff along with a reduced range of motion.
The pain can also be radiating in nature and start from the back of the head or neck and extend towards the face, and even ears.
Some people might even experience swollen eyes, blurred vision, and pain in the upper back and shoulders.
The pain is usually set off by sudden jerking movements such as coughing and sneezy by staying in uncomfortable postures involving the neck.
Although the condition is manageable, it can be chronic in nature and return from time to time.
The nerve responsible for the sensation of pain are the Greater and lesser occipital nerve, trigeminal nerve, and any injury to the facet joint or the bones of the cervical spine can transmit signals of pain to the face, neck, and head.
Sometimes a compressed nerve can get inflamed and also trigger CGH pain, however, the most common cause for CGH is a sudden neck injury known as whiplash, mostly caused during accidents. The head is suddenly thrown forward and then backward which can result in a snapped neck and result in pain.
Other than these, CGH pain can be a result of some severe underlying conditions, such as cancer, internal injuries, fractures, and concussions.
If you’re experiencing any of the above symptoms then immediately call your doctor and seek professional care.
There is no single treatment available for CGH and various options need to be explored to treat the symptoms. Non-surgical multidisciplinary treatments are mostly preferred since they’re not invasive and have the least side effects.
This procedure involves manipulation and massage of the joints in order to release pressure and provide relief from Common Neck Injury. You can go to a physical therapist who will instruct you in performing various movements and exercises. It also helps in improving nerve functionality and slowly mobilizes the stiff areas. Exercises are the most effective when it comes to slowly strengthen the affected area and increasing mobility.
Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation
This treatment is another non-surgical option that involves the use of low voltage electric currents to cure pain and stimulate the neural network. The TENS device is safe to use can also be operated at home for pain relief and healing. The voltage is adjustable and can be set accordingly.
Irritation of C2 nerve roots can result in occipital distribution pain. Diagnostic can of C2 nerve roots helps in pain relief.
OTC medications such as NSAIDs, muscle relaxants, and medicines prescribed for headaches, in general, can be used alongside therapy and other treatments to manage pain.
Postural analysis and corrections are necessary to avoid undue pressure on the cervical spine.
To learn more about neck pain, go to Neck Syndrome.