Odds are you have anterior head carriage accompanied by superior Frankfort Line. Anterior head carriage exists when your ear canal protrudes forward beyond mid-shoulder and superior Frankfort Line when your inferior eye socket is elevated above your ear canal. These pervasive, acute and repetitive stress-induced, head and neck trauma-related disorders account for widespread headache, neck stiffness, fatigue, pain; even anxiety and depression. Understanding this condition, making the necessary lifestyle modifications and getting the proper professional help could change your life for the better — forever.
Posture and Movement Origins
Our bed pillows, car seats, chairs, couches and desks; at home, work and leisure; forwardly flex our bodies, for many hours per day, into C-shapes. The forms taught to us for gym workouts and even yoga practice do the same. Our activities of daily living train our front side muscles to become short and strong, and back side muscles to become long and weak. Our world is so full of forward flexion and forward interaction, that we are not too aware of the space immediately behind us. We tend to move into, and relate very well to the space before and beside, but not behind us. Therefore, when asked to stand up completely erect, almost everyone’s body curves forward while they insist that they are standing completely upright.
Whiplash thrusts your head and neck backward and then forward, injuring neck ligaments and muscles; misaligning your vertebral joints, bending your neck forward and forcing your face upward. Whiplash injuries frequently occur during car crashes, but also from sports collisions and slips and falls.
Torn and overstretched ligaments of your neck’s vertebral joints injure nerve endings within these ligaments responsible for maintaining your spinal stabilization system. Your spinal stabilization system protects your spinal joints from injuries and vertebral misalignments by activating and coordinating your core stabilizer muscles. These muscles maintain the alignment of your spine during movement and exertion. Neck ligament injuries disrupt the nerve control of your neck stabilizer muscles, making them weak, contracted, painful and unresponsive. Cervicogenic headache is the headache generated from such neck injury. Destabilization of your neck causes susceptibility to acute injury, and causes abnormal neck movement and neck joint wear and tear leading to degenerative neck arthritis.
Spinal Nerve Injuries
Spinal nerve roots emanating from your neck undergo tension, compression and congestion stress when your neck miss-aligns. Associated nerve disruptions impair your muscle and organ functions and interfere with your righting mechanism, disturbing your balance and sense of where your body is located in space.
Your forward positioned neck and upward tilted head lock up your neck’s vertebral joints. They chronically over-stretch your back-side neck ligaments and muscles and compresses your neck’s intervertebral discs. These abnormal posture and movement patterns generate neck stiffness, pain and headaches. In addition, your forward head carriage chronically stretches your spinal cord, which in turn stretches your brain and spinal nerve roots. This nerve tension interferes with neurological function throughout your central and peripheral nervous systems and therefore, all organs and systems throughout your body.
Anterior head carriage with superior Frankfort Line disrupts normal breathing by shortening your respiratory muscles, compressing the front side and tensing the back side of your rib cage. The resulting shallow breathing reduces your lung capacity, requiring more frequent breaths. This respiratory impairment diminishes your lung function (O2/CO2 exchange), reduces your energy production and alertness, but also affects your mood. Shallow, rapid breathing correlates with anxiety and resignation.
Overcoming Anterior Head Carriage
Healing neck ligament injuries involves body-awareness training to wake up to the blind spots in our postural and movement perception. Along with posture and movement training, spinal misalignments must be corrected. Doing so facilitates your joint movement and activates the nerves and muscles to successfully execute, strengthen and stabilize that new upright and aligned posture and movement.
You must develop the capacity to extend (bend backward) your lower back and neck while tilting your head down (lowering of your chin) for placing the center of your head over the center of your shoulders and holding it there without effort. The relief you feel from your stiffness, aches and pains and improved capacity for breathing, thinking, feeling and being will more than reward you for your time and efforts.
Professional Treatment and Training
During you initial evaluation at Boulder Chiropractic Clinic you head carriage will be examined. Treatment will usually include specific, expert correction of your upper cervical spinal misalignment (deviation of the base of your head from your upper neck). This procedure will be followed by evaluations and corrections of your pelvis, lower back, upper back, lower neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, ankles, feet and temporomandibular joints as indicated. Posture and movement training, neck extension traction, and follow-up examinations and corrective care would continue until stabilization. Occasional wellness check-ups are then required for long-term maintenance.