For anyone who caught “Doctor in the house” last week on BBC One, you will have seen the story of Gemma, who’s life and health was being completely dominated by disabling cluster headaches, also known as suicide headaches. These headaches were affecting her throughout her day and were incredibly disabling. It demonstrated the overall effect that being in pain can have on your life and your relationships. She was finding that her relationships with her husband and children were being affected by the regular attacks, and you could see the concern and distress which it caused her whole family.
For anyone who hasn’t seen the show before, we highly advise watching it. It features Dr Rangan Chatterjee, an NHS GP who wants to reduce the amount of medication we are all taking. He looks to address the root cause of people’s ill health by assessing their diet and lifestyle to see if there might be a natural way to improve their health. Dr Chatterjee spends some time living with his patients so he can gain a better understand of not only their condition, but their lifestyle.
Following a number of changes to Gemma’s diet and attempts to reduce her stress levels, she was still suffering. In fact, she found that initially things became worse than they had ever been before. Dr Chatterjee established that she had very tight muscles in her neck, and that during an attack, certain neck movements would trigger or worsen the headaches.
Finally, he took Gemma to see a chiropractor who found problems with her upper neck (possibly due to a car accident she had when she was in her teens). The chiropractor observed that this could be affecting the nerves leaving the neck, which are known to be a cause of headaches. Following a course of chiropractic treatment, Gemma’s symptoms started to come under control. Her attacks reduced in frequency from having multiple attacks per day, to experiencing days without an attack.
This show gives a hugely important message. It shows us that throwing pills at a condition may not always be the best first approach. Dr Chatterjee talks about the four areas of lifestyle that can be improved to help people take control of their health and happiness:
At Dixon Health we strive to improve people’s health globally, not simply relieve their pain. By drawing attention to all four of these area’s we see improvements in people’s pain as well as their general health. When patients come into us and tell us that they are sleeping better, enjoying their hobbies more and relationships with their friends and family have improved, it makes you realise what an asset your health really is.
If you would like to gain greater control of your own health, have a chat with one of our experienced chiropractors to see what we can do for you. Take the first step and book now for a free, no obligation consultation at Dixon Health.