The headache is one of the most common yet frustrating types of pain that one can experience. It has the power to stop us from playing our favourite sport, watching television, or even doing any form of productive work. However, the term “headache” is vague and overarching, and it’s important for us to differentiate between the ones that require medical attention and the ones that we can help ease.

Besides migranes and tension headaches, the one that we see most often at Elevate 360 is the cervicogenic headache. The term “cervicogenic” means that the pain originates from the neck. Here’s how you can identify and solve it.

Identifying the Source

The first thing you need to do is to know what type of headache you have. Unlike a migraine – which is usually accompanied with symptoms like light sensitivity – a cervicogenic headache usually only affects a localized area in the back of the head to the area behind the eye. It is usually one-sided, following the side of the neck where there is an issue.

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Some neck symptoms that accompany a cervicogenic headache are:

  • Reduced range of motion in the upper neck region
  • Neck pain or dysfunction
  • A forward head posture



Alleviate the Pain

Physiotherapy has proven to be an effective measure against cervicogenic headaches. It is important to note that postural correction is usually at the core of the treatment plan.

Treatment will typically include:

  • Soft tissue release in neck and shoulder muscles
  • Mobilisation and manipulation to spine
  • Strengthening exercises

One quick exercise you can do to prevent this kind of headache is called the deep neck flexor exercise. This is done by resting the back of your head against the wall and sliding your head up as shown in the below picture. Ensure that the back of your head does not leave the surface of the wall throughout the exercise.

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While this can alleviate pain momentarily, it is always a good idea to check with a professional to get a clear diagnosis and a proper treatment plan. If your headaches are recurrent and give you severe pain, a visit down to Elevate 360 is highly recommended! Arrange for an appointment by calling us at 69095836 or emailing us at

Wincen Citra
Head Physiotherapist

Winsen’s interest in physiotherapy stems from an avid love for sports. An active dragon boater, his passion lead him to the University of Melbourne where he was graduated with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy in 2011. After assisting for three years at Singapore General Hospital, Wincen continued to perfect his craft in neuroskeletal injuries and sports injuries in the private sector. In late 2017, he joined Elevate 360 full-time as the Head Physiotherapist. 

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