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  • Dr. Alexa Chillian

What Migraines in Teens and Youth Look Like and Chiropractic Care


featured image of migraines in teens and youth

In this post, we will explain what youth migraines look like in various age groups, why they happen and how to help your children deal with them when they strike. We'll also show you the best way to face migraines head-on (no pun intended!) and how Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care for migraines and headaches may help..


Did you know that migraines in teens and youth are more prevalent among boys in early childhood and before puberty, while young women are more affected than young men in adolescence? Migraines and headaches persist as a significant issue among youth.


According to the National Headache Foundation, in the United States, approximately 20% (10.3 million) of school-age children between the ages of 5 and 17 are susceptible to headaches. Out of these, around 15% are affected by tension-type headaches, while 5% are dealing with migraines. By shedding light on the impact of migraines and increasing understanding, we can take crucial steps towards fostering a well-informed and supportive environment for our youth.


What is a Migraine and what does it look like

in children?

A migraine is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent and intense headaches. They can be accompanied by various symptoms. In children, migraines may cause throbbing or pulsating head pain, sensitivity to light and sound, nausea, and vomiting. Some children also exhibit symptoms such as abdominal pain, dizziness, and changes in appetite or sleep patterns. The duration of migraines in children can vary, typically lasting from a few hours to a couple of days. Migraines can significantly impact a child's daily activities.


You’re not alone if you have a child who suffers from migraines and headaches. Many families, like yours, are navigating the ups and downs of youth migraines. They, like you, are trying to find ways to provide relief for their child(ren).


Is your child suffering from migraines and headaches? Schedule a free upper cervical chiropractic consultation today to see if upper cervical chiropractic care can help!


Migraines in Preschool Aged Children (Ages 3-7):

Picture this: Your adorable little munchkin is playing happily one moment. Then the next, they're clutching their head, wincing in pain. Migraines in this age group are uncommon and can be quite tricky to identify since young children may not be able to express their symptoms clearly.


Look for signs like

  • sudden irritability,

  • crying, or even

  • tummy aches.


These little warriors might also become extra sensitive to lights and sounds, and you may notice them seeking a quiet, dimly lit space to find relief. If you believe your child is suffering from migraines, always consult with your pediatrician.



Migraines in Preteens (Ages 8-12):

At this age, migraines become more apparent, and children can usually articulate their discomfort better.


  • They might describe their headaches as throbbing or pulsating.

  • They could also feel them on one side or both sides of the head.

  • They may also experience dizziness or visual disturbances, like seeing flashing lights or zigzag patterns.


The Migraine Trust suggests keeping a migraine diary, to help your child document when migraines onset, symptoms and any activities that may be triggers. After a period of time (about 3 months), you may start to recognize patterns and identify possible triggers.


Migraines in Teens (Ages 13-18):

Teenagers are more likely to experience migraines, with girls being affected more often than boys. Teens with migraines might experience additional symptoms like nausea and vomiting. Some have difficulty concentrating, which can interfere with their studies and extracurricular activities.


Stress, irregular sleep patterns, and certain triggers can also trigger migraines for these young warriors. According to the American Headache Society, “Adolescent migraine attacks normally continue for two to 72 hours but can be as short as one hour.” Preventive therapies alongside lifestyle and diet changes are an option.


If your teen is suffering from migraines, schedule a free upper cervical chiropractic consultation today!

Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care and

Youth Migraines


What is upper cervical chiropractic care and how may it help relieve youth migraines? A cervical misalignment in the neck bones can contribute to migraines in children. Upper cervical chiropractic focuses on the alignment of the upper neck vertebrae. The upper cervical area refers to the top two bones in your neck, called the atlas (C1) and axis (C2) vertebrae. These two bones play a vital role in supporting and protecting your delicate nervous system, which controls pretty much everything that happens in your body. When these bones are misaligned or not functioning properly, it can disrupt the communication between the brain and the rest of the body, potentially leading to various health issues, including migraines.

Upper cervical chiropractors, like Dr. Alexa, use gentle, precise adjustments to correct these misalignments and restore proper nerve function. By addressing the underlying structural issues, upper cervical chiropractic aims to alleviate youth migraines and improve overall well-being. Schedule a free consultation to see if upper cervical chiropractic care is right for you.

How Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care May Help Reduce and Relieve Migraines in Children

An upper cervical chiropractor is specially trained to detect and correct misalignments in the atlas and axis vertebrae using gentle and precise adjustments. By restoring proper alignment and function to these crucial bones, they aim to remove interference from the nervous system which allows your child's body to heal and function optimally!


Is Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care Safe for Children

The short answer is yes. Upper cervical adjustments are gentle, non-invasive, and specifically tailored to each individual's needs, including children. The adjustments are performed with utmost care, taking into consideration your child's age, size, and comfort level. It's a natural and drug-free approach that focuses on addressing the root cause of migraines rather than simply masking the symptoms.


Schedule a Complimentary Consultation

For Your Child

Schedule a free consultation to learn if upper cervical chiropractic care may help your child’s migraines and headaches. During your consultation, we’ll discuss your child's specific situation and dive into whether upper cervical chiropractic is the correct choice of care.



Discover Relief for Your Child’s Migraines

Book a Free Upper Cervical Chiropractic Evaluation


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