Two common sources of bad headaches uncommonly checked

Sources of headaches

There is most likely more than one source to your headache

The number one reason why I see success where I do is because I understand one simple principle. There is most likely more than one cause for your problem. I have seen many tough headache problems and all of them had several complicating factors causing the problem.

Migraine or non migraine headaches

From my experience many people are self diagnosed as having migraine headaches. Migraine is used as a synonym for a really bad headache. And I agree migraine headaches are really really bad headaches but not all bad headaches are migraine.

A migraine headache has a prodrome or initiating neurological signs for example seeing flashing lights. They will also  have a sensitivity to sound and to light. I have also seen this sensitivity to sound and light from people suffering with brain inflammation.

Common sources of bad headaches uncommonly checked

neck trigger points


the SCM is a muscle in the side of the neck. It runs from where your collar bone starts to the bone behind your ear. From what I have seen this is the number one missed cause or contributor to almost any type of headache.

SCM pain pattern

These headaches are over the eye, behind the eye or in a big arc over the ear. You can have these on both sides at the same time and you can have variations of these pain patterns. The most common cause of this is poor posture.

lymphatic congestion

Your lymphatics are channels through the body that move a liquid called lymph. You may be familiar with your lymph nodes and notice they are sore and tender when you have an infection or cold. So, part of their function can be immune in nature. When your lymphatic system slows down the lymph begins to solidify and can cause referral pain

lymphatic congestion pain pattern

The referral pain pattern would start at the upper portion of the neck and usually feels like it shoots through your head many times to the opposite side. Causes of lymphatic congestion here would be things like allergies or digestive problems.


Think of hypoglycemia as jumping up and down of your blood sugar. Hypoglycemia is also responsible for irritability if you have not eaten for a long period of time and many times these people wake up often in the middle of the night.

Your brain is very sensitive to blood sugar problems. So the dysfunctions and pain patterns can be all over the place. The one thing that is consistent is what relieves it. With these types of headaches usually eating something will relieve these types of headaches.

Many times these headaches can be the hardest to overcome because it requires a lifestyle change. Part of that is eating food on a regular basis and those who have an on the go lifestyle have the biggest challenge with that.

Resources for resolution

Trigger points and posture

Any massage therapist should be able to help you with the trigger points causing headaches. If you want resolution of the cause of these headaches you will need massage, rehab/exercise and chiropractic. That is usually the best course of care for bad posture.

Lymphatic congestion, allergies, digestive problems

If your headaches are from things you are allergic to then stop eating them. I know many people who refuse to stop eating things they are allergic to because they like them too much. Lymphatic massage can relieve the pain from lymphatic referral but, for long term resolution finding the allergy or fixing the digestive problem is the best bet. I have never used lymphatic drainage for this so I don’t know if that would work. The Iaso tea product is one that we have used very successfully for most digestive complaints.

Hypoglycemia, blood sugar problems

Eating on a frequent basis and eating foods that nourish your body will help with light forms of hypoglycemia. If you do this and get slight results then having the support of a nutritionist, naturopath or chiropractor that works with nutrition could get you the results you want.

I can help

These are a couple of the common things I see in my clinic for hard to fix headache problems. By no means is this the whole list. But, these are the main couple that show up the most often. I am in the Dallas area and work hands on with these types of cases as well as consult over the phone.


4 thoughts on “Two common sources of bad headaches uncommonly checked

  1. What helpful information! I will share it with my relatives who get severe headaches.
    For people who get “migraine” relief from botox to the face & neck (scalp?), would that indicate a non- migraine headache?

    1. Kim, for the most part that is correct. Relief or elimination would indicate the cause of the headache being the muscle group injected. I am not against medication when it is necessary but, we don’t get headaches because of lack of botox in the face and neck.

      Muscle tension in the neck/head and face are relative to the TMJ, cervical spine and shoulder. Dysfunction in one or all of these can cause major headaches that could be mislabeled as migraine headaches.

      Awesome observation!

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