Cervicogenic headaches are 2-3 times more common in females. Many years ago, it was more of the middle-aged and elderly people who were afflicted, but due to poor ergonomics in use of technology, more people are diagnosed from all ages, especially adolescents and young adults.
Cervicogenic headache is a common form of headache caused by structures in the neck. Cervicogenic headache is usually one-sided, begins in the neck and spreads to the region of the eyes, forehead and temples.
Cervicogenic headaches originate from diseases of the spine or the surounding joints. There may also be irritation of the occipital nerves which are the nerves on the back of the head. Mostly, it is the upper 3 cervical vertebrae that are implicated.
Headaches involving may also be caused by involvment of the trigeminal nerve system which are the nerves of the front of the head. The spinal root of the trigeminal nerve carries the sensory and pain fibers of the face and meninges. They are connected to the cervical nerves. Therefore conditions such as migraines can also present with neck pains.
Neck pain per se can also result from long-term sedentary work, phone/tablet gazing, or driving.
These lead to muscle imbalance in the neck and back muscles, also known as Upper-Crossed Syndrome.
• Limitation of head and neck movements
• Pain above or behind the eye
• Facial pain
• Temple pain
• Forehead pain
• Shoulder pain
• Temporomandibular pain
Limitation of neck movements and pain on movement
• Pain aggravated by head movements
• Sensitivity in the neck muscles with manual pressure
• Trigger points in neck and shoulder muscles
• Tension in neck, back, and shoulder muscles
• Weakness in the deep cervical flexor muscles (muscles that tilt the head forward)
• Triggering/aggravation of pain with pressure applied to the nape or neck
• Postural problems like upper-crossed syndrome