There is increasing scientific evidence that suggests regular exercise can help manage migraine attacks. It is effective in suppressing inflammation and decreasing stress, therefore having both physical and mental benefits. For some, it may result in fewer migraine attacks, decreased migraine intensity and reduction of medication use.
On the other hand, for over a third of people living with migraine, exercise can be a trigger for migraine attacks. This can be diagnosed as Exercise Induced Migraine.
There may be several reasons why you may be suffering from Exercise Induced Migraine. This may include an increase in cardiac output and blood pressure, and alteration of the brainstem pathways.
Neck pain is one of the most common symptoms associated with headache and migraine. This can be due to activation of the nerves in the upper neck which then causes referred pain into the head. This may be more common in sports related head injuries such as whiplash and concussion.
For some, regular exercise may result in fewer migraine attacks, decreased migraine intensity and reduction of medication use.
It is important not to avoid exercise in fear of having an attack but rather find ways that allow you get active to minimises your risk of a migraine attack. This may be under the supervision of an exercise physiologist.
Our role as manual therapists is to determine whether your neck is contributing to your migraines. We aim to decrease sensitisation of the brainstem in an attempt to decrease migraine frequency, intensity and duration, allowing you to do the things you love such as exercising.