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Notice About Thanksgiving Hours 
Thurs, Nov 21st: 7:00am - Noon
Mon, Nov 25th - Nov 29th: CLOSED
Dr. Sullivan will be traveling out of the country during 
the week of Thanksgiving.
NOVA Chiropractic will resume normal business hours beginning the week of Dec. 2nd.
Thank you to all those that have submitted pictures for the 2014 Military & Veteran's Calendar! 
The calendars will be distributed in mid-December. We will call or email all those that receive a free calendar to notify you when the calendars have arrived!
Additional calendars will be available for purchase and ALL proceeds will be donated to the "Buddy" Poppy Program!
Where Headaches
Come From
Three out of four Americans had a headache
during the past year, according to the
National Headache Foundation. 
Pain is NOT from the Brain
Many people that suffer from headaches believe that the pain they are experiencing is coming from their brain, but this is not the case. The pain signals are caused by interactions between the brain, blood vessels, and surrounding nerves, therefore, the pain comes from activated nerves surrounding the skull, blood vessels, and head muscles. 


The headache is among the most common pain complaint seen in primary care doctors' offices. As many as 45 million suffer from headaches. Tension-type and migraine headaches are the most common, and cluster headache is the most rare. It is important to seek medical attentions for headaches because, if treated correctly, more than 85% of headaches will respond to treatment. 
Because headaches are so common for Americans, they therefore have a big economic impact. Most of us have a hard time working when you have a throbbing pain in your head. The cost of these headaches in absenteeism and medical expenses is estimated as high as $50 billion per year.
Categories of Headaches

There are two main reasons why people get headaches, and doctors therefore classify headaches into two broad categories: primary and secondary.


Primary Headaches
Primary headaches are not associated with an underlying condition. However, these common headaches are legitimate biological disorders and not psychological conditions. Some of the common primary headaches include:  

  • Tension Headaches:  These are the most common forms of headaches, with approximately 78% of adults experiencing these during their lifetime.Unlike migraines they are not throbbing but band-like and aching, and typically are not severe. Women are twice as likely to suffer from tension-type headaches as men. Causes can include:
    • Muscle tightening in the back of head and scalp 
    • Poor posture
    • Inadequate rest
    • Emotional/mental stress or depression      
  • Migraine Headaches: 12% of the population experience a migraine. These headaches are more severe, throbbing, and can be felt on one side. Migraine headaches can be caused by reduced blood flow to various areas of the cerebral cortex. Once an attack begins, the pain and other symptoms of migraine arise from an inflammatory process resulting from an interaction between the trigeminal nerve and blood vessels in the coverings of the brain.  Causes include:
  • Cluster Headaches:  Clister headaches are rare and affect 1 in a 1,000 people. About 90% of those that experience these headaches are male, and they can be the most severe of all the headaches. Similar to the migraine, the pain is related to the inflammatory process resulting from an interaction between the trigeminal nerve and blood vessels in the coverings of the brain. Attackss typically recur daily or almost daily for a period of usually 4 to 8 weeks. The headache increases in intensity within 10 to 15 minutes and lasts for 30 to 45 minutes. Causes can include:
    • Seasonal during spring and autumn 
    • Excessive smoking and drinking
    • Sleep apnea 

Note: Primary headaches can also be caused by too much blood flow. For example, caffeine reduces blood flow in the brain. Some pain relievers contain caffeine to take advantage of this effect. If you have been taking caffeine every day and you stop, you can get a headache because of the increased blood flow in your brain.


Secondary Headaches
Secondary headaches are associated with medical conditions like infections, fever, head injury, hypoglycemia, tumors, dental conditions or increased pressure in the skull and/or sinuses (sinus headaches). They result from some other problem with your body. For example, some may get a headache when they have the flu or a cold. Once you eliminate the sickness, you eliminate the secondary headaches.

Understand Your Triggers
Headaches can be brought on by environmental and dietary triggers. Recognizing these can help you to avoid certain triggers that may cause headaches. Keeping a headache journal can help you track your triggers!

Common Environmental Triggers

  • Stress
  • Pollution
  • Noise
  • Lighting
  • Weather changes
  • Odors

Common Dietary Triggers

  • Nitrates and MSG
  • Alcohol (red wine, champagne)
  • Caffeine (coffee, tea, cola)
  • Chocolate
  • Medications
Dr. Sullivan's Recommendations

I recommend first trying to prevent headache attacks through non-invasive treatments and lifestyle changes. You should first try a healthy diet, the right amount of sleep, and non-drug approaches.


Some people find relief with other non-traditional techniques, such as acupuncture, hypnosis or meditation. 


To treat tension headaches Graston & Active Release Techniques are great for loosening up chronic muscle tension in the neck region. Combined with chiropractic adjustments treatments to the muscles are very effective at relieving headaches. 


Another treatment for headaches and migraines is Laser Therapy. Our laser has specific protocols for treating headaches and migraines.  Laser therapy increases circulation to the neck muscles and decreases pain and inflammation.  

Health & Wellness Articles


NOVA Chiropractic Article


NOVA Chiropractic Article


9 Common Migraine Triggers

Find NOVA Chiropractic on Facebook, Twitter, & LinkedIn!

Note: The material provided in this newsletter is for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein may not always reflect the views of the NOVA Chiropractic, nor do they imply an endorsement. 
In This Issue
Notice About Thanksgiving Hours
Thank for Participating in the Calendar Program!
Pain is NOT from the Brain
Categories of Headaches
Understand Your Triggers
Dr. Sullivan's Recommdendations
NOVA Chiropractic Blog Article
NOVA Chiropractic Blog Article
Laser Therapy
Ingredient of the Week
Ultimate Holiday Survival Guide
Updated HIPPA Notice of Privacy Practices
The Healthy Alternative
Contact Information
8992 Fern Park Drive
Burke, VA 22015

Office Hours
Mon  8:00 - Noon   2:00 - 7:00

Tues  8:00 - Noon  2:00 - 7:00

Wed  8:00 - Noon   2:00 - 7:00

Thurs 7:00 - Noon  2:00 - 7:00

Fri      Closed 
Sat     Closed 
Sun    Closed 
Quick Links

Laser Therapy
The Latest & Greatest at NOVA Chiropractic

The laser has proven to help dozens of patients at 
NOVA Chiropractic! 
Common conditions with current patients that laser therapy is helping to heal are:
  • Herniated discs
  • Knee arthritis
  • Carpel tunnel syndrome
  • Achilles tendinitis 
  • Neck and back pain
  • and much more!
For more information, 
call 703-912-7822 or email
Ingredient of the Week
Feverfew has an interesting history. Ancient Greek physicians used it to reduce inflammation and treat menstrual cramps. Although it was once used to treat fevers, as its name suggests, it didn't work very well for that purpose. It's now used to prevent migraine headaches, and several scientific studies suggest that it's effective. 

Feverfew products usually contain dried feverfew leaves, but all parts of the plant that grow above ground may be used. Researchers thought a substance called parthenolide, which helps relieve spasms in smooth muscle tissue, was what made feverfew effective against migraines. However, after more studies researchers aren't sure which part of the herb may best treat or prevent migraines.
Note: Herbs should be taken with care, under the supervision of a health care provider qualified in the field of botanical medicine. 
Ultimate Holiday Survival Guide
Get the Ultimate Holiday Survival Guide from Fitness Revolution...Absolutely Free!

In this Ultimate Survival Guide you will discover:

  • Three challenging and effective body weight workouts you can do anytime, anywhere
  • Easy to follow nutrition guides
  • Healthy recipes that will WOW your Holiday Guests
  • Party survival tips
  • Learn the seven strategies to help reduce stress during the holidays
Download now!
Updated HIPPA Notice of Privacy Practices
Click Here to Read the Updated Notice to Privacy Practices
2013 Seminars/Events 
Active Release Technique 

Re-Certification Seminar 

Iselin, New Jersey


Medicare Seminar

Richmond, Virginia


Health and Safety Fair

Fort Belvoir, VA


Health Fair at the Naval Research Laboratory

Washington, DC


Neurokinetic Therapy Seminar

Washington, DC


Active Release Techniques Full Body Seminar

The Healthy Alternative
The Healthy Alternative

A guidebook written by

Dr. Sullivan!

The Healthy Alternative: 

A Guide For A Pain-Free, Active Lifestyle empowers and educates the reader when confronted with back or neck on the treatment options available and integrating the safest, most effective ways to manage and prevent pain. Order Now!