Generally headaches respond well to massage, but it must be known that the sustainable treatment of headaches can be done once the cause is known.
Some of the causes may be low or high blood pressure, exhaustion, dehydration and be hormone or medication related. Some food disturbances may also be the cause. Some of these include dairy, chocolate or coffee.
Types of headaches:
Usually females more commonly suffer with this type of headache. This is a severe headache during which the sufferer may prefer to be in a dark room with no noise or activity in an attempt to relieve the pain. Many experience this kind of headache with a kind of “aura” that includes visual spots, colours, smells and other sensations just before the headache starts. This is normally an indication as to an impending migraine, which can last for 1-4 days.
Usually this sufferer tends to be male and this headache is sometimes relieved by movement. It has been said that the pain is so severe that the person wants to hit their head on the wall. This sufferer is usually agitated and has sinus/allergy problems. Sometimes this headache is triggered by alcohol, tobacco or allergens and normally occurs in clusters for 1-2 weeks for up to a year, followed by pain free intervals. The headaches normally last less than 3 hours, but may occur many times in a day.
These headaches are the most common and are caused by tension in the neck muscles which is aggravated by stress or strong emotions. Massage will greatly benefit sufferers from tension headaches.
This is a headache resulting from a misalignment of the spine in the cervical area and responds well to chiropractic care.
Headaches can also be a sign of disease and great care needs to be taken if the following symptoms present themselves:
- The sudden onset of very severe headaches
- The onset of headaches in an older person
- Persistent and severe headaches in a child
- Headaches associated with cognitive changes
- Severe headaches at night
- Headaches following trauma, or accompanied by seizures and vomiting without nausea
- Headaches associated with drug or alcohol dependance
- Constant headaches that become severe
- Headaches associated with existing cancers
In such cases a medical professional must always be consulted
Camelot International sports massage manual (2013) p. 158.