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Tension Headaches

Definition:

Tension headaches are the most common types of headache. They are headaches with muscular origins and are associated with trigger points and other myofascial pain syndromes. Tension type headaches account for nearly 90% of all headaches. Approximately 3% of the population has chronic tension type headaches.

Headaches are divided into primary and secondary conditions:

  • Primary Headaches: Are those in which the headache itself is the condition, such as tension headache, or migraine.
  • Secondary Headaches: Are the result of an underlying condition, such as high blood pressure or head trauma such as a concussion.

Causes:

Stress, such as after a long day at work or studying for long hours. Sleep deprivation, eyestrain, dehydration or caffeine withdrawal. Tension headaches manifest as trigger points that refer pain into the head and neck.

Signs and Symptoms:

Tension-type headache pain is often described as a constant pressure, as if the head were being squeezed in a vise. The pain is bilateral, diffuse and constant with tension headaches. Chronic daily headaches tend to have accompanying shoulder and upper back pain.

Treatment: Massage therapy with stretches is indicated for muscle tension headaches. For more information or to book an appointment call 604-524-4446.

Sources:

1). Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia

2). Clinical Massage Therapy: Understanding, Assessing and Treating Over 70 Conditions, Copyright Rattray Ludwig, 2005 Talus Inc.