How to Prevent Headaches

Headaches and Migraines

Headaches and Migraines

Let’s talk about headaches…

Ranging from a mid-afternoon head-pounding ache to an agonizing pain that leaves you sensitive to light and sometimes feeling sick, headaches are something most, if not all of us, have experienced at some point in our life.

But for some, headaches are a much bigger problem and can even affect everyday life…

Just like Brenda, who is a patient of mine – here’s the email she wrote to me before she came to see us:


Hi Nick, I’m 61 and have been suffering from occasional migraines ever since I was a teenager and I’ve never been able to get to the root problem.

Usually, in the past, I thought my migraines were due to stress, or a lack of sleep. Then, I thought it might be something I’m eating instead.

The thing is, I took away all of the foods that are said to set off headaches like cheese and chocolate… but nothing really changed.

I don’t know if this is true, but I heard once that tension in your shoulders can sometimes bring headaches on? I thought you’d be the best person to ask.

Is this right or am I being silly? Do I get headaches because of something I eat? I’m tired of getting migraines when I least expect them! It’s awful when they strike in the middle of playing with my grandkids.”

Brenda, 61,


Let me tell you now, Brenda certainly was right about tension in your neck and shoulders being related to this common problem!

And I can imagine you would have found it hard to believe me if I told you that 87% of headaches come from tight and tense muscles in your shoulders and neck. You’re not alone, most people don’t realize that often it has nothing to do with the foods we eat at all…

…But instead, the culprit is often tension that you never even knew existed in your neck in the first place.

Mainly because you’re just so used to it, or you just brush it to the side thinking a “stiff neck” just comes as part of the package of getting older.

But if I asked you right now – if you ever find yourself resting your head in an awkward position while you watch tv, if you ever lean your head forward when you read before bed, or even stick your neck forward when using your phone or computer…

I can bet your answer would be ‘yes’.

All of those things cause your muscles in your neck to become tired, which means one thing – lots of tension!

Which is exactly what was going on with my patient Brenda. For years Brenda was working in an office job where she spent hours each day leaning her neck forward looking at a computer screen – no wonder why when we helped ease her neck tension, her migraines became less and less of a regular occurrence!

How To Prevent Headaches

Now I know that if your job requires working on a computer, you’re not going to be able to suddenly stop looking at one, and I’m not going to tell you to stop reading or to never watch TV again, but what I am going to tell you is two things you can start to do today, to help ease neck tension that leads to all sorts of headaches…

1. Be aware of the position of your neck – if you notice that your neck is pushed forwards, tuck your chin in towards your neck to help straighten it and put it back into the right position.

2. Relax in a warm bath – muscles love to be warm, and warm muscles mean less tension. So run yourself a nice warm bath, lay back, and relax.

Watch this video to learn the best exercises to help prevent headaches.

So if you find yourself sick of headaches stopping you in your tracks for days, or headaches that appear out of nowhere! Feel free to give our team a call, they are standing by to assist you – 623.486.3333.

And in the meantime, if you’d like more tips on ways to ease neck tension, go here to read my FREE tips report:

Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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