When Can a Headache Causes a Headache?

Mixed Tension Migraines 

Have you ever had two headaches at once? Did you know it's even possible to experience two headaches at the same time? Well, it is. Sometimes, a person can experience a Mixed Tension Migraine also known as a transformed migraine, chronic migraine, or chronic daily headache. That's when a person has a Tension Headache and a Migraine Headache at the same time.

Now, you probably know what a migraine is, but you might not know what a Tension headache is or why you all of the sudden have two headaches at once. A Tension headache is a common type of headache that causes pain either behind the eyes, or in the head or neck. They are caused by muscle contractions in the head or neck that are caused by certain foods, activities, or stressors.

Here's a list of factors that may trigger them:

Tension Headache Factors

  • Alcohol*
  • Eye Strain
  • Fatigue
  • Smoking*
  • Cold or flu
  • Sinus infection*
  • Caffeine*
  • Poor Posture
  • Emotional stress*

Those factors with asterisks are also factors that can trigger migraine headaches.

Your Plan to a Healthier Head

While these two types of headaches may occur at the same time, they may not have started out that way. Usually, when a person develops Mixed Tension Migraines, they have had a history of migraine headaches. Though, sometimes, a person can experience them so frequently that it may become difficult to differentiate between the two.

Now that you know it's possible to have two headaches at once, you can take steps to reduce the frequency of or eliminate this pain. First, you will want to get to the root cause of these Mixed Tension Migraines by seeking the care of an upper cervical chiropractor. They can determine the commonality between the two types of headaches that may be causing them.

A common cause of migraines and tension headaches is a head or neck injury, which can lead to misalignments in the upper neck and changes in blood flow. These misalignments can also affect the balance of your muscles around your head, neck and spine. It is important to have a proper upper cervical evaluation including three-dimensional x-rays to determine if this may be the cause of your mixed tension migraines.

To schedule your NUCCA evaluation, click here.

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Dr. Dan Spinato of the San Diego Integrative Spine Center in San Diego, California is a Rancho Penasquitos Chiropractor and an Upper Cervical Specialist trained by the National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association (NUCCA). Over the past 30 years, Dr. Spinato has helped many people find natural relief in San Diego, California. His upper cervical clinic also serves the communities of Rancho Penasquitos, Carmel Valley, Poway, Scripps Ranch and Rancho Bernardo. He is uniquely trained to correct problems in the upper cervical spine (upper neck). This vital area is intimately connected to the central nervous system and problems in this area have been shown to be an underlying cause of a variety of different health problems, including migraine headaches, chronic neck and back pain, fibromyalgia, allergy and sinus problems and temporomandibular joint disorders. More information can be found on his website at http://www.powaychiropractor.net.

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NUCCA Chiropractic Care

What is NUCCA
The National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association (NUCCA) is an organization of Doctors of Chiropractic dedicated to patient care, education and research.

Spinal health care using the NUCCA procedures focuses on detecting and correcting a small misalignment in the upper neck area. Gentle, non-invasive adjustments don’t require any turning, twisting or popping.

Your upper cervical spine (neck) area influences all areas of your body. Injury or chronic misalignments can cause headaches, migraines, neck pain, low back pain, weakness and more.

The NUCCA technique is currently offered by less than 1% of all the Doctors of Chiropractic.

Before the NUCCA procedure can be performed, I will sit down with you and discuss your history and symptoms. If I determine that NUCCA can help, a thorough examination and x-rays will be done. A complete report of your findings and treatment options will be discussed. 

First adjustment
Precision x-rays are taken of the spine before any treatment begins. The adjustment is performed with the patient lying on their side and the doctor applying a very light pressure behind the earlobe. A full demonstration can be seen on the video above.

The NUCCA procedure can be summed up with 5 major distinctions as compared to traditional Chiropractic:

  • Gentle adjustment to the neck with no turning, twisting or popping.
  • Precision x-rays to measure before and after corrections.
  • Total body posture and balance improvement
  • Greater stability to the spine
  • Hold adjustments longer with fewer visits

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