The demands of your work and personal life can really bring on high levels of stress, intensity, and tension. With all the pressure we face on a daily basis, it’s not surprising that the most common kind of headache is a tension headache. In order to get rid of these pesky problems, we must also understand what they are and what causes them.
Tension headaches are caused by stress building up in your muscles, particularly your back, shoulders, and neck. The increased muscle tension then extends up to your head causing discomfort, pain, or extreme pain. Whether you’re staring at a computer screen for many hours a day, driving long distances, or engaging in repetitive movements, all of these can contribute to a tension headache. Other causes include eye strain, emotional stress, excessive caffeine, smoking, and more. General stress can also manifest itself in tension in the neck, shoulders, and back as well.
Now that we know stress and muscle tension leads to tension headaches, we can learn how to get rid of them. Clearly, reducing stress and tension will make these annoying headaches go away! In the moment, you’ll need to address your symptoms right away. If left unaddressed, tension headaches can grow to an even bigger pain and possibly a migraine. When your head starts to ache, immediately practice self-massage. Gently massage the areas that hurt. If you are able, make an appointment at our office as soon as possible for a massage, which is the best stress reduction for muscles and you! Reduce the outside stimuli that are causing stress by turning lights and sounds off. Practice deep breathing. Essential oils like lavender or peppermint can diffuse stress and tension as you breathe in deeply.
After you’ve reduced the symptoms of your current tension headache, you’ll have to assess long-term factors contributing to your stress. Start by addressing areas of your life that are causing stress. Getting an ergonomic assessment at work can greatly reduce the factors contributing to your headaches. Healthy eating habits and even moderate, consistent exercise helps to get your muscles moving on a regular basis. A regular schedule of massage can set up a cycle of relaxation and stress relief that will greatly reduce the chances of tension headaches.
Tension headaches can be caused by a multitude of stressful factors. With our helpful hints and a regular massage routine, you can easily get rid of tension headaches right away, and even before they pop up. Set up a consultation with MMS today for personalized tips and stress reducing massages.