One of the most common reasons for people coming to see me for Bowen Therapy is for help with their headaches. Some are persistant and draining, some are sporadic and debilitating. In either case, they can have a huge impact of our quality of life. Bowen has a role to place in reducing the frequency and severity of the pain.
I tread carefully with headaches and recognise that there is no one approach that will help every type. As a health professional I understand how important it is to assess every client to ensure the best treatment plan is formulated, as well as to ensure that there are no Red Flag symptoms that would have me referring you off for a medical opinion first.
Here’s a quick breakdown of the most common reasons behind the headaches that I see each week.
SINUS – This is the deep constant pain that reaches your forehead and cheeks due to congestion and inflammation in the sinuses and can be a chronic issue for many. In Bowen Therapy, we aim to work at helping ease the congestion and it is not uncommon to hear clients swallowing and breathing clearer on the table following gentle sinus and lymphatic work.
TENSION – Often felt as forehead, neck and shoulder tension. As Bowen Therapists, we address muscles throughout the body to release tension – areas addressed can include upper shoulders, forearm and neck, lower back and sacrum as well as hamstrings and even the underside of the feet which can have a powerful effect on the top end of the muscle chain. In Bowen we have a saying that the problem is not always where the pain is and most people are surprised that we go to far reaching areas through the body to produce pain relief!
JAW (TMJ aka temporo-mandibular joint). These headaches can be associated with jaw clicking, neck and shoulder pain and can be a long term problem dating back to the days of Braces, or even following an extended trip to the dentist. By working gently on specific muscles and joints in the skull we can often see an immediate and dramatic improvement in this type of headache. I have seen symptoms of severe Trigeminal Neuralgia (severe pain related to inflammation around the trigeminal nerve) subside overnight following a Bowen session.
HORMONAL – the dread of the mid-cycle or pre-menstrual headache for many women leads them to rely on medications to control their cycle and to relieve the pain. With Bowen we work with calming the nervous system and aim to reduce tension around the reproductive and hormone secreting organs. The theory is that this reduction of stress on the organ improves the function. In reality though, this can mean long term changes to the menstrual cycle and reduction in headaches.
MIGRAINES – The mother of all headaches! Those who suffer “real” Migraines will vouch for the seering pain, pre-migraine Aura, light and noise sensitivity, lethargy, nausea and even numbness and tingling sensations that accompany their Migraine and wipe them out for days on end. By assessing carefully, a Bowen Therapist aims to identify the trigger point, muscle spasm or asymmetry needing correction and may help the migraine sufferer get tremendous relief from a short course of Bowen to minimise recurrence - this is especially the case when "nothing else has helped".
As Bowen Therapists, our job is not to diagnose, but to listen with respect. Your story - the frequency, intensity, duration and accompanying symptoms you experience is a clue – after all it is your body and you become acutely aware of subtle changes. Our role is to work with you by identifying muscle spasm and asymmetry and to remind your body to relax these areas long term.
For appointments, please call me on 0421 471012