ISOMATIC Integrative Health Centre

Greektown Danforth


In the realm of migraine management, physiotherapy and osteopathy offer distinct yet complementary approaches. Physiotherapists excel in reducing muscle tension, often associated with migraines, through techniques like massage and exercises, while also addressing posture and providing crucial education on self-management. Osteopaths, on the other hand, take a holistic perspective, using cranial osteopathy to release tension in the head and neck, enhancing circulation and alignment, and considering the interconnectedness of the body’s systems. Their patient-centered care tailors treatment to individual needs. Both disciplines aim to improve overall well-being, often in collaboration with medical treatments, presenting a comprehensive strategy for individuals dealing with migraines.

1. Physiotherapy:

  • Muscle Tension Reduction: Physiotherapists can identify and address musculoskeletal issues that may contribute to migraine triggers, such as neck and shoulder muscle tension. Physiotherapy techniques like massage, manual therapy, and stretching can help reduce this tension.

  • Posture and Ergonomics: Poor posture and ergonomics can lead to muscle tension and trigger migraines. Physiotherapists can provide guidance on improving posture and ergonomics in daily activities, reducing the risk of migraine episodes.

  • Exercises: Specific exercises can be prescribed to strengthen neck and shoulder muscles, improving stability and reducing tension. These exercises can also help with stress management, a common migraine trigger.

  • Education and Self-Management: Physiotherapists can educate patients on lifestyle modifications, relaxation techniques, and self-management strategies to prevent migraines. This includes stress reduction, sleep improvement, and dietary advice.

2. Osteopathy:

  • Cranial Osteopathy: Osteopaths often use cranial osteopathy, a technique involving gentle manipulation of the head and neck to release tension in the cranial bones and membranes. It is believed to help improve the circulation of cerebrospinal fluid and reduce intracranial pressure, potentially relieving migraine symptoms.

  • Alignment and Joint Mobility: Osteopaths focus on overall musculoskeletal health. They can address issues related to spinal and joint alignment, which may contribute to migraine triggers. Improved alignment and joint mobility can alleviate muscle tension and reduce the likelihood of migraines.

  • Holistic Approach: Osteopathy considers the body as a whole, emphasizing the interconnectedness of different systems. Osteopaths may assess various body systems, such as the circulatory and nervous systems, to identify potential sources of migraine triggers and address them.

  • Patient-Centered Care: Osteopaths work closely with patients to understand their unique triggers and symptoms. They tailor treatment plans to individual needs, taking into account the specific factors that contribute to a patient’s migraines.

Both physiotherapy and osteopathy aim to improve the overall well-being of the patient. They may be used in conjunction with medical treatments for migraines or as complementary therapies. It’s essential for individuals dealing with migraines to work with healthcare professionals to determine the most suitable treatment plan, which may include a combination of approaches to manage and reduce migraine frequency and severity.

Greektown (Danforth) in Toronto

Andrew Chan, R.H.N., DOMP, B.Sc., DO (Euro)

Andrew Chan, R.H.N., DOMP, B.Sc., DO (Euro)

Heena Vora,

Heena Vora,

Amir Kazemi, BSC,DOMP, DO(E), PhD

Amir Kazemi, BSC,DOMP, DO(E), PhD

Joey Dao, RMT Registered Massage Therapist

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