She was an elementary school teacher who began getting headaches in college. Over ten years the headaches had become more common. She had tried multiple treatments to reduce her headache pain. She started to think headaches as a normal part of life. She figured she would always have headaches. A friend talked her into coming to our office. She was hesitant, but didn't have anything to loose.
Her headaches were more common during the week. She was constantly looking down and talking to the students. Her neck was very tight and would stiffen during the day. Her headaches were worse with stress and were better during the summer. She thought the change was due to the stress levels.
She would have somewhere between two and four headaches a week. Most were mild to moderate in intensity. She felt a pain radiating from her neck to up and over her ear. The headaches would begin as stiffness and tightness that would progress to a dull ache. At its worst, the headaches felt like a sharp ice pick behind her eye.
She reported having tight knots in her neck muscles. She was always trying to talk her husband into rubbing her shoulders and knots. She felt some relief with massage but the improvement was short lived.
Treatment started focusing on the knots in her neck muscles. Physical therapy, massage, electric therapy, and ultrasound were used to decrease the muscle spasms. Graston Technique was used to address the muscle spasms and muscle adhesions in the "knots." Stretching increased the muscle flexibility.
Her headaches started to improve within two weeks. Her neck tightness and knots were much improved from initial treatment. It felt easier to look over her shoulder and was more energetic at night. The headaches were milder than before treatment.
She was soon describing 1 or 2 mild headaches and some neck tension. She said she would have been happy with treatment if the improvement stopped there.
The patient benefited greatly from the Graston Technique on her cervical muscles. The scar tissue and muscle adhesions were contributing to her headache pain. Looking downward during the day was placing additional stress on the muscles and knots, which was the initial trigger to her headaches. By decreasing the muscle spasms and adhesions, her headaches were greatly improved.
By the end of treatment, she had two mild headaches in the last month. Her neck felt better than it had in years. Her muscle knots were significantly smaller, and she had not asked her husband to rub her neck in quite sometime.