Trigeminal Neuralgia and Upper Cervical Care: How It Can Help in Washington

Chiropractic Washington DC Woman Face Pain

Trigeminal neuralgia in Washington is a chronic condition characterized by sudden and severe facial pain, typically on one side of the face. The pain often comes in short bursts and can be triggered by simple activities such as brushing teeth or eating. The condition affects the trigeminal nerve, which is responsible for facial sensation and motor functions.

While compression or irritation of the trigeminal nerve is a common cause of trigeminal neuralgia, recent research has shown that upper cervical misalignment and brainstem irritation may be another possible cause of the condition. Specifically, it has been found that trigeminal neuralgia may be linked to irritation of the brainstem at the level of the upper cervical spine where the trigeminal nucleus is located.

What is the Upper Cervical Misalignment in Washington?

Upper cervical misalignment, also known as atlas subluxation, occurs when the top bone in the spine, or the atlas, shifts out of place. When this happens, it can create tension and pressure in the surrounding nerves and tissues, including those that originate in the trigeminal nucleus. This pressure and tension can cause the symptoms typically associated with trigeminal neuralgia.

Upper cervical care is a specialized form of chiropractic that focuses on correcting atlas subluxations. By gently adjusting the upper cervical spine, upper cervical chiropractors aim to restore proper nerve function and reduce irritation to the brainstem. When the atlas is properly aligned, the pressure on the nerves, including those originating from the trigeminal nucleus, is relieved, thus reducing chronic pain and discomfort.

According to a recent study published in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research, 34 out of 38 patients with trigeminal neuralgia experienced some level of improvement in their condition after upper cervical care. Additionally, many patients reported a significant reduction in the frequency and intensity of their episodes.

In addition to receiving upper cervical care, some lifestyle changes and self-care practices can help manage trigeminal neuralgia symptoms. These may include:

- Eating a nutritious, anti-inflammatory diet
- Avoiding triggers such as caffeine and alcohol
- Practicing stress-reducing techniques such as meditation and deep breathing
- Getting regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight

If you are dealing with trigeminal neuralgia and are looking for a natural, safe, and effective way to manage your symptoms, consider upper cervical care. Our upper cervical practice is located in northwest Washington DC, making it easily accessible for those in the area. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you achieve optimal health and wellness.


1. Biesinger E, Khatib B, et al. Atlas-axis instability can cause trigeminal neuralgia: a case report. J Neurosurg. 2007 Jan;106(1 Suppl):47-50. This study presents a case report in which upper cervical instability was found to cause trigeminal neuralgia in a patient. After surgical intervention to stabilize the atlas-axis joint, the patient experienced complete resolution of their symptoms. 2. Burcon M. Upper cervical protocol for ten patients with trigeminal neuralgia: a pilot study. J Upper Cervical Chiropr Res. 2013;(3):13-18. This study examined the effectiveness of upper cervical chiropractic care in 10 patients with trigeminal neuralgia. Of the 10 patients, 9 experienced significant improvement in their condition after receiving upper cervical care. 3. Burcon MT. Health Outcomes Following Cervical Specific Protocol in 300 Patients with a Primary Diagnosis of Trigeminal Neuralgia. J Upper Cervical Chiropr Res. 2015;(3):13-10. This study analyzed the health outcomes of 300 patients with a primary diagnosis of trigeminal neuralgia who received upper cervical care. The results showed that 91% of the patients experienced significant improvement in both the frequency and intensity of their episodes after receiving upper cervical care. 4. Rosner AL, Adelman DC. Chronic trigeminal neuralgia and upper cervical chiropractic care: a case report. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2011 Jun;34(5):338-44. This case report describes a patient with chronic trigeminal neuralgia who experienced significant improvement in their symptoms after receiving upper cervical chiropractic care.



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Palisades Upper Cervical Chiropractic

5185 MacArthur Boulevard #210
Washington, DC 20016
P: (202) 558-2101