If you suffer from headaches that are being caused by tightened muscles in your neck, back, and head, you may be able to find relief though manual therapy. Manual therapy is a form of physical therapy that is used to find out why muscles are not working properly. It can then help you find relief through a hands-on approach. Here are several things that might be completed by a manual therapist to help you find relief from your headaches.

Active Release Technique

The first technique a manual therapist might use is called active release technique (ART). This technique is used to locate muscles in your neck region that might be damaged or being used improperly. The therapist will begin the technique by feeling your neck and shoulder area with his or her hands. The goal is to find the areas that are really tight and possibly even enlarged. These are the areas where muscles may be damaged, and this type of damage can occur from injuries, poor posture, or overuse of the muscles.

After a while, scar tissue will build up in these areas and will lead to a lot of pain. Through ART, a therapist uses his or her hands to put pressure on these areas to loosen them up. If this is done enough, it can help increase oxygen flow to the areas, and it can help eliminate the scar tissue. In some cases, ART can be painful to a person, but there are also times when the pressure actually feels good to a person.

With manual therapy, you are likely to have to undergo numerous activities to help eliminate the pain. ART is one of these, but you may also need to do a variety of exercises to help properly strengthen these muscles to help avoid further damage and pain in this area.

Joint Manipulation

A second technique that is often used for headache problems is called joint manipulation. This is something that chiropractors are known for, but it is also a common technique used in manual therapy.

Joint manipulation is something that involves a great deal of pressure to a certain area of the body and it happens very quickly. The therapist can do this while you are sitting up or lying down. To do this, the therapist will locate the joints in your neck that are affecting your condition. He or she will the quickly move your neck or place pressure on you until a popping (or cracking) sound is heard.

The popping sound you hear is not a bone cracking, but it is actually just trapped gas found between your joints. This technique is designed to loosen up the joints and allow toxins to leave the area. You may not feel instantly better after this is done, but in time you are likely to feel some relief from your headaches.

Joint Mobilization

A third technique you can expect a manual therapist to perform is called joint mobilization. This technique also involves a hands-on approach and is used to manually stretch out the muscles that are causing the pain you have. For headache pain, a therapist is likely to place pressure on the back of your neck or shoulders while pulling your arm out or up. This technique will help reduce the tightness in your muscles, which will cause the muscles to relax. Over time, this method too can help you feel better.

If you would like to find relief from your headaches and do not want to have surgery or use medication, you may want to try manual therapy. It can help reduce the pain you have, and it is completely natural. Visit a site like http://www.nrothandrehab.com for more information.