Chiropractic Care for Headaches: Causes, Triggers, and Treatments

A woman holds her head in discomfort. Title reads,"Chiropractic Care for Headaches: Causes, Triggers, and Treatments"

Did you know that 9 out of 10 Americans suffer from Headaches? Whether they’re frequent, one sided, tension, each headache is unique to the person. 


So how do you treat your headache when one comes on? Ice pack? Advil? Water? Studies have shown that spinal manipulation can be an effective treatment option for those that suffer from tension headaches and headaches with a neck origin. Chiropractic care can offer improvement in severity of symptoms for acute and chronic neck pain, treating the source of headaches for some. 


Let's dive into headache triggers; these are causes that can influence frequency and/or severity of a headache. Triggers can stem from certain foods, overstimulation of environmental factors (sounds, smells, lights) and/or certain behaviors (lack of sleep, large fluctuations in blood sugar, lack of water). 


95% of headaches experienced are known as Primary Headaches. What’s a primary headache you ask? They’re our tension, migraine, or cluster headaches which identify as the main concern. Most of these headaches correlate with muscle tension in the neck. Recently, Americans lead more sedentary lifestyles, leaving us in a fixed position or posture (cue the hunched over gremlin behind their laptop). Being in this state frequently or for long periods can increase joint irritation and muscle neck tension, or even upper back and scalp (YES I SAID SCALP) discomfort which causes your head to ache.


Okay so where do you go from here? Quince Orchard Medical Center has a few ideas.

What can we do for you? 


Alright that sounds great and all but you mean someone’s going to pop my spine?! Not necessarily. Chiropractors help increase mobility of a spinal joint through many means learned during their doctoral programs. This can be done by manipulating the spine, stretching, muscle activation, or massaging a muscle. You can also receive treatment without spinal manipulation if you’re not quite ready for that step. 


It’s important to talk to your provider about your questions or concerns, they’re there for you and will do their best to create a treatment plan that best suits your needs. 


  1. “American College of Physicians Issues Guideline for Treating Nonradicular Low Back Pain.” American College of Physicians Issues Guideline for Treating Nonradicular Low Back Pain | ACP Online, 15 Feb. 2017, 
  2. Beychok, Tina. “Text Neck Pain, Treatment and Prevention.” Chiropractic Economics, 30 Oct. 2019,
  3. “Chiropractic Profession.” Palmer College of Chiropractic, 10 Oct. 2023,

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