Headaches and Migraines

What's your headache or migraine like?

If your headache or migraine is one-sided but can occur on the right side one time and then the next time it is on the left, or if your headache can be in different places, then your neck is likely the cause.   

What we do:

Our approach does not involve manipulating or cracking of the neck but we gently stress the appropriate spinal segments in a smooth, sustained, persuasive manner.  We are trained in the Watson Headache approach, a method of examining the small movements of the top three spinal segments. This is an internationally recognised approach for diagnostic accuracy and reducing pain for headache and migraine conditions.

You're in safe hands:

Laurie, Clare, Naomi, and Jaclyn are experts at treating migraines and headaches in Christchurch.  With over thirty years experience between them, they are very experienced in assessing and managing the upper cervical (neck) spine for headache and migraine conditions.       

Some of these may include:

Migraines - with and without aura
Tension Headache
Post Concussion Syndrome
Menstrual Migraine
Abdominal Migraine
Migraines from ingestants (food/drink)
Vestibular Migraine (Vertigo)
Cluster Headaches
Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome

If you are experiencing any of these give us a call and we'll be happy to help.

Vestibular Disorders

What is the vestibular system?

Our vestibular system is our balance system.  It includes parts of our inner ear and brain that help control balance and coordinate eye movements.  Sometimes, for a variety of reasons, it can become unbalanced.  People suffering from a vestibular disorder may feel any or all of these symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Vertigo (feeling like the room is spinning)
  • Imbalance leading to an increased risk of falling
  • Nausea
  • Light headedness
  • Visual disturbance such as difficulty reading signs when moving or driving
  • Motion sensitivity eg car sickness or feeling dizzy when reaching up to the top shelf or rolling out of bed
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)

What is vestibular therapy?

Vestibular therapy or rehabilitation is a movement and exercise-based programme designed by an expert physiotherapist, to improve balance and reduce dizziness-related problems.

For patients with Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), whereby the inner ear is the main issue, our clinicians will perform a brisk repositioning manoeuvre that is often very effective in reducing symptoms.

Having a vestibular disorder, even temporarily, can be an unnerving experience, diminishing your quality of life and leaving you feeling anxious and vulnerable.  We can help.  Clare is an expert in treating people with vestibular disorders.


Had a concussion?  Symptoms persisting? Come and see us, we can help!

What is a concussion?

A concussion is an injury that occurs to the brain when a force is transmitted to the head that causes the brain to shake inside of the skull. This can be from a direct hit to the head, face, or neck, or a whiplash type injury. Common symptoms include headache, dizziness, fatigue, irritability, insomnia, and concentration or memory difficulty.

How long do I wait before seeking help?

Most concussions will gradually resolve in a week to ten days. When signs and symptoms persist for more than 3 weeks, usually a diagnosis of post-concussion syndrome (PCS) can be applied.  If you’ve had a concussion and the symptoms are affecting your daily life, then come and see one of our experts.

How will physiotherapy help?

Our physiotherapists trained in concussion management are able to evaluate and treat many of the symptoms and problems related to concussions. No two concussions or symptoms are the same, so a thorough assessment is performed and a personalized treatment plan is then designed for you.

Treatment is typically initially centered on the vestibular system. This system includes the inner ear and its connections with the brain and is responsible for sensing head movement, keeping your eyes focused when you move your head, and helping you keep your balance.  Neck problems, including tightness, soreness, and pain are common following a concussion. Resolving these issues will assist in reducing headache symptoms.