Headaches can range from mild to very severe. They can even be debilitating. There are several types of headaches that will be discussed here as well as the causes for each type. Treatment for headaches depends on the type of headache involved.
Tension headaches are the most common headaches that are experienced by those who have headaches. The cause of these headaches is usually due to increased stress and tension in a person’s daily life. People who are unduly anxious, have extremely hectic lives, or have very stressful jobs are prime candidates for tension headaches.
The symptoms of tension headaches include a feeling of pressure or constricting band across the head and a dull type of aching pain in the head or temples. Some people have even reported tenderness of the skin over the face, head, scalp, neck and shoulders with tension headaches. Tension headaches tend to me mild to moderate in nature and can usually be treated by over the counter medications such as Tylenol, Aspirin, Ibuprofen or Aleve. These types of headaches can last from 30 minutes to days at a time.
There are some ways for people who are prone to tension headaches to try to prevent them from occurring. These methods would include incorporating a healthy diet and exercise into their lifestyle. Other things that can be done would be to find ways to decrease the stress levels in their life. Some things that can be helpful in this matter are yoga, meditation, exercise, biofeedback, deep breathing and even some biofeedback treatments.
A physician should be consulted if tension headaches last longer than 10 days in succession or these headaches start to interfere with a person’s lifestyle. There are prescription medications that can be utilized to help relieve tension headaches. A physician may also offer lifestyle changes such as those listed above to help reduce the frequency or prevent these types of headaches.
Another type of headache is the sinus headache. These types of headache occur when the sinuses have become inflamed or infected. The sinus cavities are located in the face above and below the eyes. These types of headaches can be moderate in nature. The symptoms of sinus headaches include pain and pressure behind the eyes, under the eyes, and in the brow and forehead. These headaches frequently accompany nasal congestion and yellow or green nasal discharge. These types of headaches may feel much worse when a person bends over and the head goes below the waist. There can also be a cough and a fever associated with these types of headaches.
Sinus headaches can indicate an active infectious process in the sinus cavities of the face and head. Causes for this can include the common cold, nasal allergies, bacterial infections, and even structural issues with the nasal passages. The sinus cavities fill up with mucous or fluid which causes pressure and pain. This is what causes a sinus headache.
These types of headaches need to be evaluated by a medical professional to determine the cause and type of treatment that is appropriate if symptoms last over 5 days or a fever over 100 degrees is present. If a bacterial infection is the cause of the sinus headache antibiotics will need to be prescribed to kill the bacteria present in the sinuses.
Migraine headaches can vary from mild to severe in nature. They can even be debilitating to many people. Migraines can last from a few hours to weeks on end. Migraine headaches tend to occur on one side of the head, include visual disturbances, nausea and vomiting and cause sensitivity to light and sound. Migraines can be preempted by an aura or a warning of sorts that lets the person know that a migraine is imminent.
Some things that can cause migraine headaches can include hormonal changes in women. Many women have reported having more issues with migraine headaches directly before or during their menstrual cycles. Estrogen levels drop off sharply at this time. Certain foods have been linked to causing migraine headaches. These foods include aged cheeses, red wines and other alcohol, MSG which is a preservative that is present in a lot of Chinese food, chocolate, caffeine, and aspartame. Other things that have been linked to migraine headaches include irregular sleeping habits, skipping meals, and increased stress levels.
There are many medications that can be prescribed for migraine headaches. These types of headaches need to be evaluated by a medical professional and treated as every migraine sufferer will have their own symptoms and triggers. This makes most people need an individual treatment program for their headaches.