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The Mystery of Tension Headaches

Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. It feels like a band of pressure around your head, and can last from 30 minutes to a week! It’s related to muscles that tighten in either the neck, base of the skull, top of the shoulders or scalp.

One of the best ways to combat tension headaches is through simple lifestyle changes. Here are some valuable tips:

Woman with headache

Tension headaches can ruin a good day!

  • Exercise regularly: This golden nugget of advice helps to alleviate stress and relax your muscles.
  • Indulge in behaviours that promote health: Eat right, get plenty of sleep and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Stress management: Stress commonly triggers headaches. Do deep breathing exercises, yoga or meditation on a regular basis to reduce the tight musculature in your scalp or neck.
  • Heat and ice: Take advantage of the benefits of hot or cold packs to alleviate tense muscles in the neck, shoulders or upper back.
  • Gentle massage: Have someone gently massage your shoulders, upper back, neck or scalp to relieve tension. Even self-massage will help!
  • Improve your posture: Stand or sit up straight; don’t slouch! Optimal posture puts minimal amounts of strain on your muscles. Make sure your chair is also ergonomically correct.
  • Use your cell phone correctly: Make sure you don’t cradle your phone between your shoulder and your ear. Always hold your phone with your hand, and alternate ears.
  • Use chiropractic: Regular chiropractic care is one of the most valuable commodities in the arsenal of tools to help avoid muscular constriction and tension headaches. Your body will reward you with better function and a more pain-free life!


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