Hi, I'm Dr. Ray Drury with the Upper Cervical Spine Center. Most people do not realize that the Upper Cervical Spine Center is known as Charlotte's headache and migraine specialist. We have people come here from all over the world to get under upper cervical care. So, how does a bone in the top of the neck, that being the upper cervical spine, affect migraines? Well, it is very simple. If one of the bones in the upper part of the neck gets out of alignment, it does two things. It can affect the blood flow from the brain to the body, or from the body to the brain. It also affects the nervous system, specifically the brainstem. There are no nerves that come off of the brain, so all the nerves that innervate your head, face, and neck, including your vision, taste, smell, hearing, muscles in the face, and sensory functions all come from the neck, or the brainstem, through the top two bones, called the upper cervical spine. These nerves go back up into the head, face, and neck, as well as the blood vessels that supply blood to the brain.
If the brain says, "Hey, I need more blood flow!" the heart rate speeds up and raises your blood pressure to push the blood from your heart up into the brain through those blood vessels. The nerves that control the blood vessels come off of the brainstem and they force the blood vessels to open (dilate), or close (constrict). If the nerves do not send the message to the blood vessels to dilate, as they should to allow increased blood flow to get to the brain, then that lack of blood flow creates the symptoms of a migraine. The blood flow trying to get through those contracted blood vessels will cause the blood vessels to get inflamed and irritated, creating most of the pain. The lack of blood flow creates the auras and the other symptoms that go along with migraines.
If the bones are out alignment in the neck and it interferes with the messages to the blood vessels, it can create migraines. At the Upper Cervical Spine Center, we only use a natural approach. We do not put anything in the body. We do not take anything out of the body. We do not try to cover up the symptoms. We want to get to the root cause of the problem and correct that cause so that the migraines not only go away, but they stay away and do not reoccur.
You could take all the drugs you want - your Imitrex, your Excedrin Migraine, whatever it may be, but it is never going to fix it because the migraines do not come from a drug deficiency. Taking drugs might mask it, but it's not going to take care of the problem. It's going to keep coming… again, and again, and again, and, unfortunately, long-term migraine sufferers are actually at a much higher risk for a stroke! How does that happen? If you cut off blood supply to the brain long enough, part of that brain will starve to the point of an eventual stroke. The brain starves because it lacks enough oxygen. Those brain cells will start to die.
Find an upper cervical doctor near you. If you live in the Charlotte area, we are your headache and migraine doctors at the Upper Cervical Spine Center. Visit our website to learn more at uppercervicalspinecenter.com. Call our office. Set up a complimentary consultation. Just tell them, "Dr. Drury said I could come in and get checked out for nothing," to find out what is causing your problem. Once we know the cause, then we will know if it is something we can help you with. If it is, we will explain what we can do from there. Give our office a call today at (704)588-5560 if you live in the Charlotte, Belmont, Huntersville, Cornelius, Rock Hill, Fort Mill, Gastonia, Pineville, or Matthews areas. Set up your consultation. We hope to see you soon. Have a great day.