Self Management of Headaches

Sit Up Straight! We hear it all the time but does posture actually contribute to headaches?

Let’s be clear from the get-go, headaches are caused by more than just your posture, but it can contribute to the overall load on your neck and head regions.

There are many different types of headaches, and they are different from a diagnosed migraine. The most common headache which is associated with posture is a cervicogenic headache. A cervicogenic headache arise from the neck and are typically caused by tension and compression of the upper four cervical spinal segments. Non-optimal posture for an extended period of time is a typical contributing factor to these headaches.

Postures involved in desk work, sustained positions in occupations such as hairdressing, driving and some trades, breast feeding, and phone scrolling can all contribute to less optimal postures and lead to possible cervicogenic headaches.

Want a little relief?

Here is a few things you can do to get a bit of relief from your headaches;

  • Simple neck stretches- moving your head slowly going up and down, rotating to look over your shoulders and taking your ears down to your shoulders- just to feel a light stretch.
  • Heat pack on your neck and shoulders to encourage the muscle to relax.
  • Vagal breathing – breathe in for 3 seconds and out for 6 seconds for 2-3 minutes as a method of relaxation and nervous system reset.
  • Self-Release – place a towel on the upper portion of the back of your neck and apply a slight pressure onto the spine with the towel and then rotate your head to one side. Perform this movement six times, rest and repeat another two time. Repeat with other side.


None of this helps?

It is possible your headache is not stemming from your neck area. Headaches can also be linked to diet, hydration, hormones and life stress.

If none of the above help to relieve your headache or if it returns consult with your trusted musculoskeletal therapist and GP.