What is constant headaches a sign of: Why Am I Getting Frequent Headaches?
Types, Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment
Headaches can be more complicated than most people realize. Different kinds can have their own set of symptoms, happen for unique reasons, and need different treatments.
Once you know the type of headache you have, you and your doctor can find the treatment that’s most likely to help and even try to prevent them.
Common Types of Headaches
There are over 150 types of headaches, but the most common types include:
Tension headaches are the most common type of headache among adults and teens. They cause mild to moderate pain and come and go over time. They usually have no other symptoms.
Migraine headaches are often described as pounding, throbbing pain. They can last from 4 hours to 3 days and usually happen one to four times a month. Along with the pain, people have other symptoms, such as sensitivity to light, noise, or smells; nausea or vomiting; loss of appetite; and upset stomach or belly pain. When a child has a migraine, they may look pale, feel dizzy, and have blurry vision, fever, and an upset stomach. A small number of children’s migraines include digestive symptoms, like vomiting, that happen about once a month.
These headaches are the most severe. You could have intense burning or piercing pain behind or around one eye. It can be throbbing or constant. The pain can be so bad that most people with cluster headaches can’t sit still and will often pace during an attack. On the side of the pain, the eyelid droops, the eye reddens, pupil gets smaller, or the eye makes tears. The nostril on that side runs or stuffs up.
They’re called cluster headaches because they tend to happen in groups. You might get them one to three times per day during a cluster period, which may last 2 weeks to 3 months. Each headache attack lasts 15 minutes to 3 hours. They can wake you up from sleep. The headaches may disappear completely (your doctor will call this remission) for months or years, only to come back later. Men are three to four times more likely to get them than women.
Chronic Daily Headaches
You have this type of headache 15 days or more a month for longer than 3 months. Some are short. Others last more than 4 hours. It’s usually one of the four types of primary headache:
- Chronic migraine
- Chronic tension headache
- New daily persistent headache
- Hemicrania continua
With sinus headaches, you feel a deep and constant pain in your cheekbones, forehead, or on the bridge of your nose. They happen when cavities in your head, called sinuses, get inflamed. The pain usually comes along with other sinus symptoms, like a runny nose, fullness in the ears, fever, and a swollen face. A true sinus headache results from a sinus infection so the gunk that comes out of your nose will be yellow or green, unlike the clear discharge in cluster or migraine headaches.
Posttraumatic stress headaches usually start 2-3 days after a head injury. You’ll feel:
- A dull ache that gets worse from time to time
- Trouble concentrating
- Memory problems
- Tiring quickly
Headaches may last for a few months. But if it doesn’t get better within a couple of weeks, call your doctor.
Less Common Headaches
When you’re active, the muscles in your head, neck, and scalp need more blood. Your blood vessels swell to supply them. The result is a pulsing pain on both sides of your head that can last anywhere from 5 minutes to 48 hours. It usually hits while you’re active or just afterward, whether the activity is exercise or sex.
Hemicrania continua is a chronic, ongoing headache almost always affects the same side of your face and head. Other symptoms include:
- Pain that varies in severity
- Red or teary eyes
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Droopy eyelid
- Contracted iris
- Responds to the pain medication indomethacin
- Worse pain with physical activity
- Worse pain with drinking alcohol
Some people also notice migraine symptoms like:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Sensitivity to light and sound
There are two types:
- Chronic: You have daily headaches.
- Remitting: You have headaches for 6 months. They go away for a period of weeks or months and come back.
You can get headaches from shifting hormone levels during your periods, pregnancy, and menopause. The hormone changes from birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy can also trigger headaches. When they happen 2 days before your period or in the first 3 days after it starts, they’re called menstrual migraines.
New Daily Persistent Headaches (NDPH)
These may start suddenly and can go on for 3 months or longer. Many people clearly remember the day their pain began.
Doctors aren’t sure why this type of headache starts. Some people find that it strikes after an infection, flu-like illness, surgery, or stressful event.
The pain tends to be moderate, but for some people, it’s severe. And it’s often hard to treat.
Symptoms can vary widely. Some are like tension headaches. Others share symptoms of migraine, such as nausea or sensitivity to light.
Call your doctor if your headache won’t go away or if it’s severe.
You might also hear these called medication overuse headaches. If you use a prescription or over-the-counter pain reliever more than two or three times a week, or more than 10 days a month, you’re setting yourself up for more pain. When the meds wear off, the pain comes back and you have to take more to stop it. This can cause a dull, constant headache that’s often worse in the morning.
Ice Pick Headaches
These short, stabbing, intense headaches usually only last a few seconds. They might happen a few times a day at most. If you have one, see the doctor. Ice pick headaches can be a condition on their own, or they can be a symptom of something else.
Talk to your doctor if you get a headache after you have a spinal tap, a spinal block, or an epidural. Your doctor might call it a puncture headache because these procedures involve piercing the membrane that surrounds your spinal cord. If spinal fluid leaks through the puncture site, it can cause a headache.
People often call this the worst headache of your life. It comes suddenly out of nowhere and peaks quickly. Causes of thunderclap headaches include:
- Blood vessel tear, rupture, or blockage
- Head injury
- Hemorrhagic stroke from a ruptured blood vessel in your brain
- Ischemic stroke from a blocked blood vessel in your brain
- Narrowed blood vessels surrounding the brain
- Inflamed blood vessels
- Blood pressure changes in late pregnancy
Take a sudden new headache seriously. It’s often the only warning sign you get of a serious problem.
What Causes Headaches?
The pain you feel during a headache comes from a mix of signals between your brain, blood vessels, and nearby nerves. Specific nerves in your blood vessels and head muscles switch on and send pain signals to your brain. But it isn’t clear how these signals get turned on in the first place.
Common causes of headaches include:
- Illness. This can include infections, colds, and fevers. Headaches are also common with conditions like sinusitis (inflammation of the sinuses), a throat infection, or an ear infection. In some cases, headaches can result from a blow to the head or, rarely, a sign of a more serious medical problem.
- Stress. Emotional stress and depression as well as alcohol use, skipping meals, changes in sleep patterns, and taking too much medication. Other causes include neck or back strain due to poor posture.
- Your environment, including secondhand tobacco smoke, strong smells from household chemicals or perfumes, allergens, and certain foods. Stress, pollution, noise, lighting, and weather changes are other possible triggers.
- Genetics. Headaches, especially migraine headaches, tend to run in families. Most children and teens (90%) who have migraines have other family members who get them. When both parents have a history of migraines, there is a 70% chance their child will also have them. If only one parent has a history of these headaches, the risk drops to 25%-50%.
Doctors don’t know exactly what causes migraines. One theory suggest that a problem with the electric charge through nerve cells causes a sequence of changes that cause migraines.
Too much physical activity can also trigger a migraine in adults.
Getting a Diagnosis
Once you get your headaches diagnosed correctly, you can start the right treatment plan for your symptoms.
The first step is to talk to your doctor about your headaches. They’ll give you a physical exam and ask you about the symptoms you have and how often they happen. It’s important to be as complete as possible with these descriptions. Give your doctor a list of things that cause your headaches, things that make them worse, and what helps you feel better. You can track details in a headache diary to help your doctor diagnose your problem.
Most people don’t need special diagnostic tests. But sometimes, doctors suggest a CT scan or MRI to look for problems inside your brain that might cause your headaches. Skull X-rays won’t help. An EEG (electroencephalogram) is also unnecessary unless you’ve passed out when you had a headache.
If your headache symptoms get worse or happen more often despite treatment, ask your doctor to refer you to a headache specialist.
How Are Headaches Treated?
Your doctor may recommend different types of treatment to try. They also might suggest more testing or refer you to a headache specialist.
The type of headache treatment you need will depend on a lot of things, including the type of headache you get, how often, and its cause. Some people don’t need medical help at all. But those who do might get medications, electronic medical devices, counseling, stress management, and biofeedback. Your doctor will make a treatment plan to meet your specific needs.
What Happens After I Start Treatment?
Once you start a treatment program, keep track of how well it’s working. A headache diary can help you note any patterns or changes in how you feel. Know that it may take some time for you and your doctor to find the best treatment plan, so try to be patient. Be honest with them about what is and isn’t working for you.
Even though you’re getting treatment, you should still steer clear of the things you know can trigger your headaches, like foods or smells. And it’s important to stick to healthy habits that will keep you feeling good, like regular exercise, enough sleep, and a healthy diet. Also, make your scheduled follow-up appointments so your doctor can see how you’re doing and make changes in the treatment program if you need them.
Headache Pain: When to Worry, What to Do – Harvard Health Publishing
Understanding what causes headaches and finding treatments to relieve the pain
Nearly everyone has had headache pain, and most of us have had it many times. A minor headache is little more than a nuisance that’s relieved by an over-the-counter pain reliever, some food or coffee, or a short rest. But if your headache is severe or unusual, you might worry about stroke, a tumor, or a blood clot. Fortunately, such problems are rare. Still, you should know when a headache needs urgent care and how to control the vast majority of headaches that are not threatening to your health.
What causes headaches?
Doctors don’t fully understand what causes most headaches. They do know that the brain tissue and the skull are never responsible since they don’t have nerves that register pain. But the blood vessels in the head and neck can signal pain, as can the tissues that surround the brain and some major nerves that originate in the brain. The scalp, sinuses, teeth, and muscles and joints of the neck can also cause head pain.
When to worry about a headache
You can take care of many types of headaches by yourself, and your doctor can give you medication to control most of the tougher headaches. But some headaches call for prompt medical care. Here are some warning signs for when you should worry about headaches:
- Headaches that first develop after age 50
- A major change in the pattern of your headaches
- An unusually severe headache
- Head pain that increases with coughing or movement
- Headaches that get steadily worse
- Changes in personality or mental function
- Headaches that are accompanied by fever, stiff neck, confusion, decreased alertness or memory, or neurological symptoms such as visual disturbances, slurred speech, weakness, numbness, or seizures
- Headaches that are accompanied by a painful red eye
- Headaches that are accompanied by pain and tenderness near the temples
- Headaches after a blow to the head
- Headaches that prevent normal daily activities
- Headaches that come on abruptly, especially if they wake you up
- Headaches in patients with cancer or impaired immune systems
Types of headaches
There are more than 300 types of headaches, but only about 10% of headaches have a known cause. The others are called primary headaches. Here is a rundown on some major primary headaches.
Occurring in about three of every four adults, tension headaches are the most common of all headaches. In most cases, they are mild to moderate in severity and occur infrequently. But a few people get severe tension headaches, and some are troubled by them for three or four times a week.
The typical tension headache produces a dull, squeezing pain on both sides of the head. People with strong tension headaches may feel like their head is in a vise. The shoulders and neck can also ache. Some tension headaches are triggered by fatigue, emotional stress, or problems involving the muscles or joints of the neck or jaw. Most last for 20 minutes to two hours.
If you get occasional tension-type headaches, you can take care of them yourself. Over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, other brands) and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, naproxen (Aleve, other brands), or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, other brands) often do the trick, but follow the directions on the label, and never take more than you should. A heating pad or warm shower may help; some people feel better with a short nap or light snack.
If you get frequent tension-type headaches, try to identify triggers so you can avoid them. Don’t get overtired or skip meals. Learn relaxation techniques; yoga is particularly helpful because it can relax both your mind and your neck muscles. If you clench your jaw or grind your teeth at night, a bite plate may help.
If you need more help, your doctor may prescribe a stronger pain medication or a muscle relaxant to control headache pain. Many people with recurrent tension-type headaches can prevent attacks by taking a tricyclic antidepressant such as amitriptyline (Elavil, generic). Fortunately, most people with tension-type headaches will do very well with simpler programs.
Migraines occur less often than tension headaches, but they are usually much more severe. They are two to three times more common in women than men, but that’s small consolation if you are among the 6% to 8% of all men who have migraines. And since a Harvard study of 20,084 men age 40 to 84 reported that having migraines boosts the risk of heart attacks by 42%, men with migraines should take their headaches to heart.
Neurologists believe that migraines are caused by changes in the brain’s blood flow and nerve cell activity. Genetics play a role since 70% of migraine victims have at least one close relative with the problem.
Migraine triggers. Although a migraine can come on without warning, it is often set off by a trigger. The things that set off a migraine vary from person to person, but a migraine sufferer usually remains sensitive to the same triggers. The table lists some of the most common ones.
Major migraine triggers
Migraine symptoms. Migraines often begin in the evening or during sleep. In some people, the attacks are preceded by several hours of fatigue, depression, and sluggishness or by irritability and restlessness. Because migraine symptoms vary widely, at least half of all migraine sufferers think they have sinus or tension headaches, not migraines.
About 20% of migraines begin with one or more neurological symptoms called an aura. Visual complaints are most common. They may include halos, sparkles or flashing lights, wavy lines, and even temporary loss of vision. The aura may also produce numbness or tingling on one side of the body, especially the face or hand. Some patients develop aura symptoms without getting headaches; they often think they are having a stroke, not a migraine.
The majority of migraines develop without an aura. In typical cases, the pain is on one side of the head, often beginning around the eye and temple before spreading to the back of the head. The pain is frequently severe and is described as throbbing or pulsating. Nausea is common, and many migraine patients have a watering eye, a running nose, or congestion. If these symptoms are prominent, they may lead to a misdiagnosis of sinus headaches. One way to remember the features of migraine is to use the word POUND
P is for pulsating pain
O for one-day duration of severe untreated attacks
U for unilateral (one-sided) pain
N for nausea and vomiting
D for disabling intensity.
Without effective treatment, migraine attacks usually last for four to 24 hours. When you’re suffering a migraine, even four hours is far too long — and that’s why early treatment for a migraine is so important.
Migraine treatment. If you spot a migraine in its very earliest stages, you may be able to control it with nonprescription pain relievers. Acetaminophen, aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, and a combination of pain medications and caffeine are all effective — if you take a full dose very early in the attack.
When prescription drugs are needed, most doctors turn to the triptans, which are available as tablets, nasal sprays, or as injections that patients can learn to give to themselves. Examples include sumatriptan (Imitrex), zolmitriptan (Zomig), and rizatriptan (Maxalt). Triptans provide complete relief within two hours for up to 70% of patients; the response is best if treatment is started early. Some patients require a second dose within 12 to 24 hours. Patients with cardiovascular disease and those who take a high dose of certain antidepressants need to discuss the risks of using them with their doctor.
Work with your doctor to find the migraine treatment that works best for you. Remember, though, that overuse can lead to rebound headaches and a vicious cycle of drugs and headaches. So, if you need treatment more than two or three times a week, consider preventive medications.
Migraine prevention. Some people can prevent migraines simply by avoiding triggers. Others do well with prompt therapy for occasional attacks. But patients who suffer frequent migraine attacks often benefit from preventive medications. Effective prescription drugs include beta blockers (such as propranolol, nadolol and atenolol), certain antidepressants (such as amitriptyline), and certain antiseizure medications (such topiramate and valproate). Difficult cases may benefit from referral to a headache specialist.
Cluster headaches are uncommon but very severe headaches, and they occur five times more often in men than women. Although anyone can get cluster headaches, the typical patient is a middle-aged man with a history of smoking.
The problem gets its name because the headaches tend to come in clusters, with one to eight headaches a day during a one- to three-month period every year or two, often at the same time of year. The pain always strikes one side of the head and is very severe. The eye on the painful side is red and watery, the eyelid may droop, and the nose runs or is blocked. The attack starts abruptly and lasts for 30 to 60 minutes. Most sufferers become restless and agitated during the attack; unable to sit still, they pace, jog in place, or beat their head against a wall. Nausea and sensitivity to light and sound may accompany the pain.
Inhaling high flow oxygen soon after the onset of the headache can often stop the attack. Sumatriptan is often effective for cluster headaches, particularly when given by injection. Other triptans may also help. Some patients favor lidocaine nose drops, dihydroergotamine injections, or other treatments. The most effective medication for preventing cluster headache attacks is verapamil, a calcium-channel blocker. Other drugs that may help include divalproex, topiramate, and lithium.
Other types of headaches
Doctors have diagnosed hundreds of conditions associated with headaches. Here are just a few:
Medication headaches. Many drugs number headaches among their side effects. And although it seems paradoxical, many medications used to treat headaches can also cause medication overuse headaches or rebound headaches. Migraine sufferers are particularly vulnerable to a vicious cycle of pain leading to more medication, which triggers more pain. If you have frequent headaches and use medication, OTC or prescription, or both, for more than 10 to 15 days a month, you may have medication overuse headaches. The way to find out is to discontinue or taper your medication — but always consult your doctor first. A corticosteroid such as prednisone may help control pain during the withdrawal period.
Sinus headaches. Acute sinusitis causes pain over the forehead, around the nose and eyes, over the cheeks, or in the upper teeth. Stooping forward increases the pain. Thick nasal discharge, congestion, and fever pinpoint the problem to the sinuses. When the acute infection resolves, the pain disappears. Sinusitis is not a common cause of chronic or recurrent headaches.
Ice cream headaches. Some people develop sharp, sudden headache pain when they eat anything cold. The pain is over in less than a minute, even if you keep eating. If you are bothered by ice cream headaches, try eating slowly and warming the cold food at the front of your mouth before you swallow it.
Headache from high blood pressure. Except in cases of very high blood pressure, hypertension does not cause headaches. In fact, most people with high blood pressure don’t have any symptoms at all, and a study of 51,234 people reported that hypertension was associated with a reduced incidence of headaches. But that’s no reason to neglect your blood pressure. Hypertension leads to strokes, heart attacks, heart failure, and kidney disease, so all men should have their pressure checked, and then take steps to correct abnormalities.
Headache from exercise and sex. Sudden, strenuous exercise can bring on a headache. Gradual warm-ups or treatment with an anti-inflammatory medication before exercise can help. Sexual intercourse may also trigger headaches; some men note only dull pain, but others suffer from severe attacks called orgasmic headaches. Some people can prevent orgasmic headaches by taking an NSAID 30 to 60 minutes before intercourse.
Modern medicine depends on tests to diagnose many problems. For most headaches, though, a good old-fashioned history and physical will do the job. In fact, CT scans, MRIs, and EEGs (brain wave tests) look normal in tension-type headaches, migraines, and cluster headaches. Still, these tests can be vital in patients with warning signs or other worrisome headaches.
Living with constant headaches
For most of us, an occasional headache is nothing more than a temporary speed bump in the course of a busy day. Even so, most men can ease the problem with simple lifestyle measures and nonprescription medications. Relaxation techniques, biofeedback, yoga, and acupuncture may also help. But for some of us, headaches are a big problem. Learn to recognize warning signs that call for prompt medical care. Work with your doctor to develop a program to prevent and treat migraines and other serious headaches. And don’t fall into the trap of overusing medications; for some gents, rebound headaches are the biggest pain of all.
Image: wavebreakmedia LLC/Getty Images
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content.
Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date,
should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
10 Surprising Causes of Constant Headaches
Tension headaches can be caused by everything from dehydration to undiagnosed diabetes or an autoimmune disease. But stress is the most commonly reported trigger for tension headaches, the Mayo Clinic explains.
A tension headache feels tight, like your head is in a vice, and can occur on both sides and commonly hits later in the day as tension builds. “It’s a tight, oppressing feeling,” Dr. Hutchinson explains.
If you’re experiencing constant headaches, chances are they’re either tension headaches or migraines.
So what does it mean if you have constant headaches?
Technically, for your headaches to be considered chronic, they need to go on for 15 days or longer per month, for at least three consecutive months, SELF reported previously. That being said, if you have recurring headaches for, say, two weeks, that doesn’t mean you should discount your pain—you should still see your doctor.
The causes of constant, headaches—whether tension or migraine—range from totally minor to pretty major. Here are 10 things your headaches could be telling you about your health.
1. You’re stressed.
“Unresolved stress can really contribute to headache,” Dr. Hutchinson says. As mentioned, tension headaches happen when the muscles of the neck and scalp tense up, and this can be a physical response that your body has to stress and anxiety, MedlinePlus explains.
If you’re suffering from constant headaches, stop and think about what’s going on in your life. How stressed are you? And are you just pushing your stress under the rug instead of dealing with it?
Fix it: This is where stress management and self-care techniques become crucial. These techniques can range from lifestyle changes to psychotherapeutic interventions. like cognitive behavioral therapy, which can help you better cope with anxious thoughts. Everyone’s stress and anxiety management methods are different, as SELF reported previously; but oftentimes a mix of techniques that you can do on your own and/or with a mental health professional is best.
2. You’re dehydrated.
“With any kind of headache, a person needs to look at their health habits,” Dr. Hutchinson says. One important thing to look at is water intake, as dehydration can cause headaches. The exact connection is unknown, but experts believe it has to do with the way blood volume drops when you’re not getting enough water. Lower blood volume means less oxygen is getting to the brain.
Fix it: Keep an eye out for obvious signs of dehydration, including having yellow pee, feeling thirsty, and having a dry mouth. Then, drink more water (of course). You can also up the number of foods with high water content in your diet (think: celery, watermelon, and tomatoes).
The amount of fluids you need to consume depends on different factors, like your age and physical activity levels. But as a general rule of thumb, women should consume about 2.7 liters (91 ounces) of water (from drinks and food) each day, and roughly 3.7 liters (125 ounces) of water daily for men, according to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
3. You’re anemic.
Anemia is a condition where you lack enough red blood cells to properly transport oxygen to tissues throughout your body, the Mayo Clinic explains. It can bring on symptoms including fatigue, feeling weak, shortness of breath, and others. “More severe anemia can cause headache,” Dr. Hutchinson says.
There are different causes of anemia, including having an iron deficiency, having lower-than-normal levels of B-12 and/or folic acid, or having a chronic health condition, like sickle cell anemia, that leads to anemia.
Is your constant headache a sign of something serious? Read it all here
Aches and pain in the head can be symptoms of underlying health issues, emotional stress, and hormones.
Written by Satata Karmakar | Updated : November 27, 2020 12:08 PM IST
Headaches are really common. Constant headaches are one of the most common symptoms and the most common nervous system disorder, afflicting half of the adult population at least once a year, according to the World Health Organization.
Even though it’s so common, if you’ve got a headache that’s just not allowing you to live a happy life or is severe and lasting, you might be worried that there’s a serious health problem you are suffering from. So how do you know when a headache is something you can treat at home, or when you should see your doctor? Well, in this article you will understand your headache better. Let’s explore what a headache is, what causes these headaches, and what are they trying to tell you about your health.
WHAT IS A HEADACHE?
Technically, a headache can be any pain in the head, forehead, or neck area. Headaches are commonly caused due to muscle tension, nerve pain, and dehydration. They are also considered as a vital sign or symptom of an illness that your body is suffering from.
There are two most common types of headaches: primary and secondary. Primary headaches are the most common, describing headaches that ‘just happen’ without an underlying illness or injury causing them. These include tension headaches, migraines, and cluster headaches. Secondary headaches have a separate cause, like an existing illness, hormonal changes, sinus or tooth inflammation, or a side effect of medication or drugs.
WHAT DOES CONSTANT HEADACHE PAIN FEEL LIKE?
In general, headaches can range from annoying to extremely painful. People may experience throbbing, squeezing, or constant or intermittent pain in the back of the head and upper neck or behind the eyes. Some headaches are excruciating. They feel like a poke in the eye, a stabbing in the brain, or a band of pressure around the head. Severe head pain can cause nausea and vomiting.
A headache commonly occurs alone but may coexist with other symptoms. Associated symptoms can be important clues for identifying the underlying cause of a headache.
Symptoms that may occur with headaches include blurry vision, confusion, difficulty walking or speaking, excessive sleepiness, nausea, vomiting, fever, neck pain, neck stiffness, and increased sensitivity to light or noise.
WHAT YOUR CONSTANT HEADACHES CAN TELL YOU
Having a headache is a pain literally and figuratively. Whether the pain is splitting, pulsating, or downright all-encompassing, headaches can wreak havoc on your life. But, everything has a reason, so does your content headaches! Here’s what your headache is trying to tell you about your health.
# Calm down, YOU’RE STRESSED
Yes, you can have headaches if you are stressed from the inside. If you’re suffering from constant headaches, stop and think about what’s going on in your life. How stressed are you? And are you just pushing your stress under the rug instead of dealing with it? You need to fix this immediately. Wondering how? Well, first try to understand the root cause of your stress. Once that is done, try to figure out the possible solutions and make things better inside your mind. Try meditation and involve yourself in some types of physical activities.
# You have got a SINUS INFECTION
Constant headaches are one of the most common symptoms that you are suffering from sinus. Most sinus headaches are just migraines with sinus symptoms. So if you have recurrent headaches in your sinus or facial area, chances are it’s a migraine or a tension headache. In fact, studies have shown that approximately 90 percent of people who see a doctor for sinus headaches are found to actually have migraines.
# In rare cases, it can also indicate that you have a BRAIN TUMOR
No, not all headaches are a sign that you are suffering from a brain tumor. But, yes, some headaches can indicate that you have a brain tumor. A brain tumor is a growth of abnormal cells on your brain, and they can be either cancerous or benign. They’re rare, so chances are you don’t have one. But it’s a possibility, and something you don’t want to miss. As you all know – prevention is better than cure!
# Wait! you are DEHYDRATED
Your constant headache can indicate that you are dehydrated from inside and that you need to give your body more fluids. Dehydration headaches occur when you lose a substantial part of the water and electrolytes that your body needs to perform normal functions. Some experts believe that a dehydration headache occurs as a result of narrowing blood vessels as the body tries to maintain enough fluid.
To avoid dehydration headaches, you must drink the required amount of water daily. Keep your body hydrated and stay healthy.
# You have a CHRONIC DISEASE
Headache is a common side effect of many chronic health conditions like fibromyalgia, lupus, and diabetes. However, constant headaches would typically accompany other symptoms. For instance, lupus features headaches alongside symptoms like fatigue, joint pain, and skin lesions that get worse when exposed to the sun. So, whenever you see that you are suffering from a constant headache, visit your physician or health consultant. Get yourself medically checked.
Apart from the above mentioned, your constant headache can also indicate that you are not following a healthy lifestyle. Avoid too much alcohol and caffeinated drinks. Make yourself more physically active so that your body can protect itself from foreign viruses and diseases.Also, try these home remedies when you have a strong headache the doesn’t just let you feel good.
NATURAL REMEDIES THAT ACTUALLY WORK!
If the headache seems to be concentrated in the forehead region, place both your index fingers on either side of the bridge of your nose; between your eyebrows. Press down and move your fingers in circular movements across the eyebrows. This will help relieve the tension in the muscles in the front part of your skull.
If you have a tension headache that seems to be squeezing your head, try giving yourself a quick massage on the scalp with some essential oil such as peppermint or lavender oil. The friction and the action of the oil increase blood circulation on your scalp, and this helps reduce the spasm of the muscles on the skull, providing relief from the headache.
According to the concept in Ayurveda, a headache is triggered by some impairment of the digestive ability of the body. And this is where the digestive properties of ginger help beat a headache. To harness the pain-killing power of the volatile oils present in ginger just crush a little fresh ginger, boil it in some water. Now filter this decoction and drink it when it is warm to find a marked reduction in the intensity of your headache.
# Green tea
Rich in antioxidants, green tea is an excellent remedy for headaches. Brew a little green tea and squeeze in the juice of half and lemon and drink warm. You can also add a few slices/ crushed ginger to it, this will make it more effective in treating headaches.
Stay Tuned to TheHealthSite for the latest scoop updates
Join us on
Headaches (for Teens) – Nemours Kidshealth
What Are Headaches?
Although it may feel like it, a headache is not actually a pain in your brain. The brain tells you when other parts of your body hurt, but it can’t feel pain itself.
Most headaches happen in the nerves, blood vessels, and muscles that cover a person’s head and neck. Sometimes the muscles or blood vessels swell, tighten, or go through other changes that stimulate the surrounding nerves or put pressure on them. These nerves send a rush of pain messages to the brain, and this brings on a headache.
What Are the Kinds of Headaches?
The most common type of headache is a tension headache (also called a muscle-contraction headache). Tension headaches happen when stressed-out head or neck muscles squeeze too hard. This causes pain often described as:
- feeling as though someone is pressing or squeezing on the front, back, or both sides of the head
Pain that’s especially sharp and throbbing can be a sign of a migraine headache. Migraine headaches aren’t as common as tension headaches. But for teens who do get them, the pain can be strong enough to make them miss school or other activities if the headaches aren’t treated.
One big difference between tension headaches and migraines is that migraines sometimes cause people to feel sick or even to throw up. Tension headaches typically don’t cause nausea or vomiting.
Most migraines last anywhere from 30 minutes to 6 hours. Some can last as long as a couple of days. They can feel worse when someone is doing physical activity or is around light, smells, or loud sounds.
What Causes Headaches?
Lots of different things can bring on headaches. Most headaches are related to:
- infections (such as ear infections, viruses like the flu or a cold, strep throat, meningitis, or sinus infections)
- computer or TV watching
- loud music
- caffeine (people who drink a lot of caffeinated drinks might get caffeine-withdrawal headaches)
- skipping meals
- lack of sleep or sudden changes in sleep patterns
- having a head injury
- taking a long trip in a car or bus
- some medicines (headaches can be a side effect)
- vision problems
- smelling strong odors such as perfume, smoke, fumes, or a new car or carpet
- some foods (such as alcohol, cheese, nuts, pizza, chocolate, ice cream, fatty or fried food, lunchmeats and hot dogs, yogurt, aspartame, and MSG)
For some teens, hormonal changes can also cause headaches. For example, some girls get headaches just before their periods or at other regular times during their monthly cycle.
Who Gets Headaches?
Headaches are common in people of all ages.
Migraine headaches often run in the family. So if a parent, grandparent, or other family member gets them, there’s a chance you could get them too. Some people are sensitive to things that can bring on migraine headaches (called triggers), such as some foods, stress, changes in sleep patterns, or even the weather.
When Should I Call the Doctor?
If you think your headaches may be migraines, you’ll want to see a doctor to treat them and learn ways to try to avoid getting the headaches in the first place. Sometimes relaxation exercises or changes in diet or sleeping habits are all that’s needed. But if needed, a doctor also can prescribe medicine to help control the headaches.
You’ll also want to see a doctor if you have any of these symptoms as well as a headache:
- changes in vision, such as blurriness or seeing spots
- tingling sensations (for example, in the arms or legs)
- skin rash
- weakness, dizziness, or difficulty walking or standing
- neck pain or stiffness
If you do see a doctor for headaches, he or she will probably want to do an exam and get your
medical historyto help figure out what might be causing them.
The doctor may ask you:
- how severe and frequent your headaches are
- when they happen (to see if the headaches have a pattern or are connected to any specific foods or events)
- about any medicine you take
- about any allergies you have
- if you’re feeling stressed
- about your diet, habits, sleeping patterns, and what seems to help or worsen the headaches
The doctor may also do blood tests or imaging tests, such as a CAT scan or MRI of the brain, to rule out medical problems.
Sometimes doctors will refer people with headaches they think might be migraines or a symptom of a more serious problem to a specialist like a
neurologist, a doctor who specializes in the brain and nervous system.
It’s very rare that headaches are a sign of something serious. But see a doctor if you get headaches a lot or have a headache that:
- is particularly painful and different from the kinds of headaches you’ve had before
- doesn’t go away easily
- follows an injury, such as hitting your head
- causes you to miss school
- happens along with any of these symptoms:
- changes in vision, such as blurriness or seeing spots
- tingling sensations (such as in the arms or legs)
- skin rash
- weakness, dizziness, or trouble walking or standing
- neck pain or stiffness
How Can I Feel Better?
Most headaches will go away if a person rests or sleeps. When you get a headache, lie down in a cool, dark, quiet room and close your eyes. It may help to put a cool, moist cloth across your forehead or eyes. Relax. Breathe easily and deeply.
If a headache doesn’t go away or it’s really bad, you may want to take an over-the-counter pain reliever like acetaminophen or ibuprofen. You can buy these in drugstores under various brand names, and your drugstore may carry its own generic brand. It’s a good idea to avoid taking aspirin for a headache because it may cause a rare but dangerous disease called Reye syndrome.
If you are taking over-the-counter pain medicines more than twice a week for headaches, or if you find these medicines are not working for you, talk to your doctor.
Most headaches are not a sign that something more is wrong. But if your headaches are intense and happen often, there are lots of things a doctor can do, from recommending changes in your diet to prescribing medicine. You don’t have to put up with the pain!
Headaches | Types, Warning Signs, Causes & Treatment
Almost everyone will experience headaches at some time. Most headaches are not caused by serious or sinister conditions. However, people understandably worry if headaches seem different (either particularly severe, particularly frequent or unusual in any other way). The most common worry is that the headache is a symptom of a brain tumour.
This leaflet discusses headache generally. It explains the different types of headache you may experience and describes those very rare situations where a headache is, in fact, a symptom of serious disease.
Types of headache
Headaches can be primary, or they can be secondary which means they are a side-effect of a separate illness or injury.
Your doctor can generally tell the likely cause of your headache from talking to you and examining you. Once he or she has discovered the cause then you will be able to decide how to reduce or stop the headaches. This may involve taking medication only when you get the headaches, taking daily medication to prevent them or, sometimes, stopping medication you are already taking.
Very occasionally, headaches need further investigation to rule out more serious underlying causes.
The most common types of headache, by a very long way, are tension headaches and migraines.
Tension headaches are usually felt as a band or across the forehead. They can last for several days. They can be uncomfortable and tiring, but they do not usually disturb sleep. Most people can carry on working with a tension headache. They tend to worsen as the day progresses and are not usually made worse by physical activity, although it’s not unusual to be a bit sensitive to bright light or noise. See the separate leaflet called Tension Headache.
Migraines are also very common. A typical migraine is one-sided and throbbing. Indeed, headaches that are one-sided, headaches that throb and headaches that make you feel sick are more likely to be migraines than anything else. Migraines are often severe enough to be disabling. Some patients need to go to bed to sleep off their headache. See the separate leaflet called Migraine.
Cluster headaches are very severe headaches, sometimes called ‘suicide headaches’. They occur in clusters, often every day for a number of days or even weeks. Then they disappear for months on end. They are uncommon and tend to occur particularly in adult male smokers. They are severe, one-sided headaches, which are really very disabling (they prevent regular activity). People often describe them as the worst pain they have ever felt.
Cluster headaches are usually one-sided. Patients often have a red watery eye on the affected side, a stuffy runny nose and a droopy eyelid. See the separate leaflet called Cluster Headaches.
Chronic tension headaches
Chronic tension headache (or chronic daily headache) is usually caused by muscle tension in the back of the neck and affects women more often than men. Chronic means that the condition is persistent and ongoing. These headaches can be started by neck injuries or tiredness and may be made worse by medication overuse (see below). A headache that occurs almost every day for three months or more is called a chronic daily headache. See the separate leaflet called Chronic Tension Headache.
Medication-overuse headache (medication-induced headache) is an unpleasant and long-lasting headache. It is caused by taking painkilling medication – usually for headache. Unfortunately, when painkillers are taken regularly for headaches, the body responds by making more pain sensors in the head. Eventually the pain sensors are so many that the head is super-sensitive and the headache won’t go away. People who have these headaches often take more and more painkillers to try to feel better. However, the painkillers have often long ceased to work.
Medication-overuse headaches are the most common cause of secondary headache. Read more about See the separate leaflet called Medication-overuse Headache (Medication-induced Headache).
Exertional headaches/sexual headaches
Exertional headaches are headaches associated with physical activity. They can become severe very quickly after a strenuous activity such as running, coughing, having sex (intercourse), and straining with bowel movements. They are more commonly experienced by patients who also have migraines, or who have relatives with migraine.
Headaches related to sex particularly worry patients. They can occur as sex begins, at orgasm, or after sex is over. Headaches at orgasm are the most common type. They tend to be severe, at the back of the head, behind the eyes or all over. They last about twenty minutes and are not usually a sign of any other problems.
Exertional and sexual intercourse-related headaches are not usually a sign of serious underlying problems. Very occasionally they can be a sign that there is a leaky blood vessel on the surface of the brain. Therefore, if they are marked and repeated, it is sensible to discuss them with your doctor.
Primary stabbing headaches
Primary stabbing headaches are sometimes called ‘ice-pick headaches’ or ‘idiopathic stabbing headache’. The term ‘idiopathic’ is used by doctors for something that comes without a clear cause. These are short, stabbing headaches which are very sudden and severe. They usually last between 5 and 30 seconds, at any time of the day or night. They feel as if a sharp object (like an ice pick) is being stuck into your head. They often occur in or just behind the ear and they can be quite frightening. Although they are not migraines they are more common in people who have migraines – almost half of people who experience migraines have primary stabbing headaches. They are often felt in the place on the head where the migraines tend to occur.
Primary stabbing headaches are too short to treat, although migraine prevention medications may reduce their number.
Hemicrania continua is a primary chronic daily headache. It typically causes a continuous but fluctuating pain on one side of your head. The pain is usually continuous with episodes of more severe pain, which can last between 20 minutes and several days. During these episodes of severe pain there may be other symptoms such as watering or redness of the eye, runny or blocked nose, and drooping of the eyelid, all on the same side as the headache. Similar to migraine, there may also be sensitivity to light, feeling sick (nausea) and being sick (vomiting). The headaches do not go away but there may be periods when you don’t have any headaches. However hemicrania continua headaches respond to a medicine called indometacin.
Trigeminal neuralgia causes facial pain. The pain consists of extremely short bursts of electric shock-like sensation in the face – in the area of the eyes, nose, scalp, forehead, jaws and/or lips. It is usually one-sided and is more common in people over the age of 50. It can be triggered by touch or light breeze on the face. See the separate leaflet called Trigeminal Neuralgia.
Sometimes headaches have underlying causes, and treatment of the headache involves treating the cause. People often worry that headaches are caused by serious disease, or by high blood pressure. Both of these are extremely uncommon causes of headache – indeed high blood pressure usually causes no symptoms at all.
Chemicals, drugs and substance withdrawal
Headaches can be due to a substance, or its withdrawal – for example:
- Carbon monoxide (which is produced by gas heaters which are not properly ventilated).
- Drinking alcohol (with headache often experienced the morning after).
- Lack of body fluid (dehydration).
Headaches due to referred pain
Some headaches can be caused by pain in some other part of the head, such as tooth or ear pain, pain in the jaw joint and pains in the neck.
Sinusitis is a common cause. The sinuses are ‘holes’ in the skull which are there to stop it from being too heavy for the neck to carry around. They are lined with mucous membranes, like the lining of your nose, and this produces mucus in response to colds or allergy. The lining membranes also swell up and may block the drainage of the mucus from the space. It then becomes thickened and infected, leading to headache. The headache of sinusitis is often felt at the front of the head and also in the face or teeth. Often the face feels tender to pressure, particularly just below the eyes and beside the nose. You may have a stuffy nose and the pain is often worse when you bend forwards. Acute sinusitis is the type that comes on quickly in association with a cold or sudden allergy. You may have a temperature and be producing a lot of mucus. Chronic sinusitis can be caused by allergy, by overusing decongestants or by an acute sinusitis that doesn’t settle. The sinuses become chronically infected and the sinus linings chronically swollen. The contents of the sinuses may be thick but often not infected.
Acute glaucoma can cause severe headache. In this condition the pressure inside the eyes goes up suddenly and this causes a sudden very severe headache behind the eye. The eyeball can feel very hard to touch, the eye is red, the front of the eye (cornea) can look cloudy and the vision is usually blurred.
What types of headache are serious or dangerous?
All headaches are unpleasant and some, such as headache from medication misuse, are serious in the sense that when not tackled properly they may never go away. However, a few headaches are signs of serious underlying problems. These are uncommon – in many cases very rare.
Dangerous headaches tend to occur suddenly, and to become progressively worse over time. They are more common in older people. They include the following:
Bleeding around the brain (subarachnoid haemorrhage)
Subarachnoid haemorrhage is a very serious condition which occurs when a small blood vessel bursts on the surface of the brain. Patients develop a severe headache and stiff neck and may become unconscious. This is a rare cause of severe headache.
Meningitis and brain infections
Meningitis is infection of the tissues around and on the surface of the brain and encephalitis is infection of the brain itself. Brain infections can be caused by germs called bacteria, viruses or fungi and they are thankfully rare. They cause a severe, disabling headache. Usually patients are sick (vomit) and cannot bear bright light (this is called photophobia). Often they have a stiff neck, too stiff for the doctor to be able to bend the head down so that the chin touches the chest (even if you try to relax). Patients are usually also unwell – hot, sweaty and ill.
Giant cell arteritis (temporal arteritis)
Giant cell arteritis (temporal arteritis) is, generally, only seen in people over the age of 50. It is caused by swelling (inflammation) of the arteries in the temples and behind the eye. It causes a headache behind the forehead (a frontal headache). Typically the arteries in the forehead are tender and patients notice pain in the scalp when they comb their hair. Often the pain gets worse with chewing. Temporal arteritis is serious because if it is not treated it can cause sudden loss of eyesight. Treatment is with a course of steroids. The need to continue these steroids is usually monitored by your GP through blood tests, and they are typically needed for many months.
Brain tumour is a very uncommon cause of headaches – although most patients with long-lasting, severe or persistent headaches start to worry that this may be the cause. Brain tumours can cause headaches. Usually the headache of brain tumours is present on waking in the morning, is worse on sitting up, and gets steadily worse from day to day, never easing and never disappearing. It can sometimes be worse on coughing and sneezing (as can sinus headaches and migraines).
When do I need to seek medical advice about a headache?
Dr Sarah Jarvis MBE
When should I be worried about a headache?
Most headaches don’t have a serious underlying cause. However, healthcare professionals are trained to ask you about the signs and symptoms that might suggest your headache needs further investigation, just to make sure it’s nothing serious.
The things which would suggest to your doctor and nurse that your headache might need further investigation include the following. They do not mean that your headache is serious or sinister, but they mean that the doctor or nurse might wish to do some further checks to be sure:
- You have had a significant head injury in the previous three months.
- Your headaches are worsening and accompanied by high temperature (fever).
- Your headaches start extremely suddenly.
- You have developed problems with speech and balance as well as headache.
- You have developed problems with your memory or changes in your behaviour or personality as well as headache.
- You are confused or muddled with your headache.
- Your headache started when you coughed, sneezed or strained.
- Your headache is worse when you sit or stand.
- Your headache is associated with red or painful eyes.
- Your headaches are not like anything you have ever experienced before.
- You have unexplained vomiting with the headache.
- You have low immunity – for example, if you have HIV, or are on oral steroid medication or immune suppressing drugs.
- You have or have had a type of cancer that can spread through the body.
Most headaches, whilst unpleasant, are harmless and respond to simple measures. Migraine, tension headache and medication-overuse headache are all very common. Most of the population will experience one or more of these. Working out the underlying cause of any headaches through discussion with your doctor is often the best way to solve them. It is possible to develop a persistent (chronic) and continuous headache through taking simple painkilling medicines which you took to get rid of your headache. Your doctor can support you through the process of stopping painkillers if this is the case.
Headaches are, very rarely, a sign of a serious or sinister underlying condition, and most headaches go away by themselves.
If you have a headache which is unusual for you then you should discuss it with your doctor. You should also talk to your doctor about headaches which are particularly severe or that stop your regular activities, those which are associated with other symptoms like weakness or tingling, and those which make your scalp sore (especially if you are over 50 years of age). Finally, always talk to your doctor if you have an unremitting morning headache which is present for more than three days or is getting gradually worse.
Remember that headaches are less likely to occur in those who:
- Manage their stress levels well.
- Eat a balanced, regular diet.
- Take balanced regular exercise.
- Pay attention to posture and core muscles.
- Sleep on two pillows or fewer.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Have plenty of sleep.
Anything that you can do to improve any of these areas of your life will improve your health and well-being and reduce the number of headaches you experience.
Headaches – Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Diagnosis
Headaches are extremely common – most people have a headache at some time in their life. Most headaches disappear on their own (with a little time) or with the help of mild pain relievers. Although most headaches are mild and temporary annoyances, some people have headaches that are so severe they need to consult a doctor for pain relief.
Children can also have headaches, some well before they reach the age of 10. Research shows that before puberty, headaches are more common in boys, but that trend is reversed after puberty. Adult women experience more headaches than adult men, and they’re often linked to a woman’s menstrual cycle. With advancing age, both women and men tend to have fewer, less severe headaches.
Headaches come in various forms: tension, migraine, sinus, and cluster headaches. In a small number of cases, headaches may signal a more serious condition that requires immediate medical attention.
Headaches can be triggered by a variety of factors. The most common cause of headaches is prolonged tension or stress. These are called tension headaches or muscle-contraction headaches. Virtually everyone suffers from this at some time. Muscles in your scalp, neck, and face tighten and contract, causing spasms and pain.
Psychological factors such as anxiety, fatigue (e.g., eyestrain), and stress (e.g., long periods of concentration) as well as mechanical factors such as neck strain (e.g., working on a computer for prolonged periods) are often the culprits behind a typical tension headache.
Migraines are generally more severe and can be debilitating. The cause of migraines is not known but many trigger factors are recognized. These include hormonal changes (during a woman’s menstrual cycle or triggered by oral contraceptives), certain foods (e.g., chocolate, aged cheeses), beverages (e.g., red wine, coffee), strong odours, lack of sleep, mild traumatic brain injury (e.g., concussion), and even stress. It is not uncommon to experience mixed tension-migraine headaches.
Sinus headaches are less common than people think. Many people with sinus headaches actually have migraine headaches. They can occur after a bout of upper respiratory infection, such as a cold. Along with the headache, people often have a runny or stuffy nose. Sinus headaches are caused when bacteria invade and infect the nasal sinuses.
Cluster headaches are an uncommon type of headache. They more often affect men, run in families, and tend to occur in clusters over a few days, weeks, or months separated by long headache-free periods lasting from months to years. The cause is not known.
So-called “ice pick” or primary stabbing headaches are severe headaches that occur suddenly, causing a few seconds of intense pain at a small, localized spot. The exact cause of these headaches is unknown, but they are usually not due to a serious problem.
Symptoms and Complications
Tension headaches generally cause a constant pressure or a dull ache that affects the entire head. In most cases it begins slowly, with the ache usually focused above the eyes. There’s a feeling of tightness across the forehead or at the back of the neck. The ache can last for hours or days at a time, with mild-to-moderate pain that is not worsened by activity and that typically improves when the source of tension is relieved.
Cluster headaches occur in “clusters” or groups, with pain lasting about 15 minutes to three hours at a time. The ache and pain is limited to one side of the head and can be extremely severe. They are often accompanied by other symptoms on the side of the headache such as redness and tearing of the eye, drooping eyelid, and nasal stuffiness and dripping.
Migraines range from mild to severe. They often occur as one-sided head pain but can sometimes affect both sides. The location, duration, and intensity of pain vary widely from person to person as well as from one episode to another. Migraine is usually a pulsating pain, often with other symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, visual disturbances, and hypersensitivity to light, noise, and smells. A migraine attack can last from hours to days, averaging 12 to 18 hours per episode. They’re often so severe and incapacitating that many migraine sufferers are unable to carry out normal daily activities.
Migraine headaches are divided into two categories: migraine with aura and migraine without aura. Some people experience a pre-headache stage known as an aura, which can last about 10 to 30 minutes. A typical aura includes visual disturbances such as blind spots, zigzag flashes, and light sparks. The aura normally clears as the headache starts, but there can be some overlap. Sometimes the aura will occur without a headache but more often no aura occurs before the headache.
Although headaches can be painful and debilitating, they are usually not due to dangerous conditions. However, headaches can occasionally be a sign of something more serious. Very severe high blood pressure (above 180/110 mm Hg), stroke, brain tumour, or an aneurysm (a dilated weakened blood vessel) in the brain may cause headaches. Meningitis (an infection of the brain’s lining) may also cause a headache. Warning signs are a sudden onset of headache accompanied by fever, stiff neck, and visual problems (double vision).
It’s critical that you seek emergency medical care if you experience a headache that:
- gets worse over days or weeks
- is accompanied by impaired neurological function (e.g., loss of balance, weakness, numbness, or speech disturbance) and double vision (could signal a stroke)
- is accompanied by persistent nausea and vomiting or changes in vision
- is accompanied by seizures, mental disturbances, and loss of consciousness
- is associated with a fever or stiff neck (could signal meningitis)
- is different than the usual pattern of headaches you have experienced
- strikes suddenly with great intensity
- wakes you from sleep or is worse when you lie down
- has occurred for the first time ever after the age of 40
Making the Diagnosis
If you tend to have headaches that are frequent and severe, your doctor will examine you for any serious, life-threatening conditions (e.g., stroke, meningitis) and start emergency care if needed. As well, if you regularly have headaches and experience a change in the pattern of your usual headaches, you should see your doctor.
Typically, a thorough medical history and physical examination is enough for a good diagnosis. Recording headache frequency, intensity, what you think may have triggered them, as well as medications you have tried may help your doctor make the diagnosis. Since tension headaches are very common, your doctor will ask questions about your current stress level and other personal factors (e.g., work) that may be triggering your headaches. Depending on the location, duration, and any accompanying symptoms, the type of headache can be determined.
In some cases, a brain scan called a CT (computerized tomography) scan or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) may be used to check for serious causes of headache.
Treatment and Prevention
Since tension headaches are caused by factors such as neck strain, stress, and anxiety, treatment involves eliminating the stressful situation, if possible. Taking an over-the-counter pain reliever such as acetaminophen*, ibuprofen, or naproxen and finding ways to relax, rest, correct poor posture, and regular exercise can all help to relieve and prevent headache pain.
Cluster headaches respond poorly to over-the-counter medications. Oxygen therapy and prescription medications can help.
Sinus headaches usually require antibiotics or other treatments to clear up the infection. Once the infection is gone, the headache will go away, too. Until the infection gets better, taking an over-the-counter pain reliever can help ease the pain.
Migraines can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, if the headaches are mild.
Other medications may need to be prescribed if the headaches are more severe. These can be divided into acute treatments and preventative treatments. Acute treatments are used to try to stop the headache from becoming more severe and to reduce the pain. These include NSAIDs, triptans (e.g., sumatriptan, zolmitriptan), and ergot derivatives (e.g., ergotamine). Acute treatments should be used no more than 10 to 15 days per, month depending on the medication. If used more frequently, they can actually cause headaches called medication overuse headaches.
If you are using acute treatment more than 10 to 15 days per month or you have severely debilitating headaches, your doctor may suggest preventative treatment that is used on a regular basis. The goal of this treatment is to reduce the number of headaches. Some preventative therapy options include beta blockers, anti-depressants, calcium channel blockers, and anti-epileptic medications.
Botulinum toxin (e.g., Botox) is sometimes used for people with chronic migraines (more than 15 days per month) to help reduce the frequency and severity of headaches.
*All medications have both common (generic) and brand names. The brand name is what a specific manufacturer calls the product (e.g., Tylenol®). The common name is the medical name for the medication (e.g., acetaminophen). A medication may have many brand names, but only one common name. This article lists medications by their common names. For information on a given medication, check our Drug Information database. For more information on brand names, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/condition/getcondition/Headaches
90,000 Headache – causes of occurrence, under what diseases it occurs, diagnosis and methods of treatment
The information in this section cannot be used for self-diagnosis and self-medication. In case of pain or other exacerbation of the disease, only the attending physician should prescribe diagnostic tests. For a diagnosis and correct treatment, you should contact your doctor.
A headache – the reasons for the appearance, for what diseases it occurs, diagnostics and methods of treatment.
At the heart of the headache is the irritation of pain receptors located in:
- dura mater and cerebral vessels;
- periosteum of the skull, vessels of the soft tissues of the head, muscles.
The brain tissue itself does not contain pain receptors.
Varieties of headaches (cephalgia)
Headaches are divided into primary and secondary. A headache is considered primary if it is the main manifestation of a brain disorder, such as migraines and tension headaches.
Secondary headache is a symptom of other disorders, such as head trauma, chronic cerebral ischemia, viral diseases, diseases of the cervical spine, etc.
Let’s dwell on the four most common types of headaches.
Tension headache is the most common form of primary headache.Psychoemotional stress, depression, anxiety and various phobias, overstrain of the muscles of the shoulder girdle are the main causes of tension headaches.
Migraine occurs in women about three times more often than in men, and about 60-70% of all cases of migraine in women is the so-called menstrual migraine. However, the causes and mechanism of development of migraine attacks are not fully understood. At any age, in both men and women, migraine attacks can be triggered by emotional and physical overload, eating disorders, alcohol intake, changes in weather conditions, sharp noise, strong odors, etc.
Headache with colds
Headache with colds is caused by hyperthermia and the damaging effect of microorganism toxins on the brain cells.
Headache in chronic cerebral ischemia
The cause of this pain, which is the most common secondary headache in elderly patients, is the pathology of the cerebral vessels, in which blood circulation is impaired and the blood supply to the brain tissue deteriorates.
The result is progressive brain dysfunction.
Which diseases cause
Tension headache is based on irritation of the structures of the central nervous system (CNS), called the nociceptive system. Myogenic, stressful, psychogenic headaches refer to tension headaches.
Most often, tension headache occurs at a young and working age.
In cases of tension headaches, a person experiences bilateral, usually not strong, pressing and squeezing, monotonous and dull headaches. Attacks of such pains are accompanied by fatigue, nervousness, impaired appetite and sleep, decreased performance. The duration of the attack is from 30 minutes to several days.
Indicates only one disease – migraine, since the attacks of such cephalalgia have a peculiar character.Migraine pain, paroxysmal, throbbing, of moderate or severe intensity. It captures half of the head.
The pain can increase with physical exertion, tilting the head, often accompanied by nausea, vomiting.
Bright light, harsh sound, strong odor increase pain. A migraine attack can be preceded by an aura lasting up to one hour – a combination of visual, auditory, olfactory or other neurological symptoms.
Occurs in most acute and chronic diseases of the upper and lower respiratory tract caused by bacteria or viruses.In some cases, the intensity of such cephalalgias correlates with the severity of fever, the strength of the cough, sore throat and other symptoms. The pain most often spreads over the entire head.
Headache in chronic cerebral ischemia
The concept of chronic cerebral ischemia includes: discirculatory or vascular encephalopathy (slowly progressive violation of cerebral circulation), cerebrovascular insufficiency (pathology of cerebral vessels) (vascular, dementia lesion of the naked brain).In the clinical picture of chronic cerebral ischemia, dizziness, decreased cognitive functions, emotional lability (unstable mood), motor-coordination disorders, and perception disorders (tinnitus, “flies” in front of the eyes) become indispensable companions of headaches. Headaches are usually mild, spread all over the head, long-lasting.
Diagnostics and examinations
Tension headache and migraine headache, headache with colds
The diagnosis is made by a neurologist based on anamnesis and assessment of patient complaints.
Headache in chronic cerebral ischemia
Radiological examination (ultrasound dopplerography of the cerebral vessels), key in chronic cerebral ischemia
Headache and eye pain: causes, treatment. How dangerous is it?
HomepageEye DiseasesDiseasesHeadache behind the eyeballs: causes and treatment
A headache behind the eyeballs is what most people experience at some point in their lives.Symptoms include pain in the sinuses or in the back of the eye that may or may not be throbbing.
When you have a headache behind your eyeballs, you want to feel relief immediately. You also want answers.
What causes the headache behind the eyeballs? What can be done to relieve pain? Could a headache behind the eyeballs be caused by vision problems?
Let’s deal with the last question first.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) defines “pain behind the eyeballs” as “physical discomfort caused by eye disease or other medical conditions.” However, the AAO also notes that “the location where you feel pain does not necessarily indicate the cause of the pain.”
In most cases, the headache behind the eyeballs is a type of so-called radiating pain, that is, pain that is localized in a place remote from the pathological focus in which it arose.Irradiating pain is common because there is a network of interconnected sensory nerves in the body that innervate many different tissues.
“Pain that occurs in almost all sensitive structures in the head is redirected to the eye area,” says Dr. Mark W. Green, MD, professor of neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine, Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York. “Just because the pain is felt in the eye area does not mean that the focus of its occurrence is in the same place.In fact, pain and where it occurs rarely coincide. ”
Dr. Green notes one useful rule to remember: if the white part of the eye (the sclera) is not red and there are no eye complaints such as blurry or distorted vision, then it is unlikely that the headache is due to a problem with the eyes.
WHAT CAUSES EYEBALL HEADACHES? Ask an expert. Find an optometrist nearby and make an in-person or virtual appointment.
Common causes of headache behind the eyeballs
Migraine headache is the most common type of disabling headache. This is an intermittent headache that lasts up to 72 hours and often causes severe throbbing pains on one side of the head and behind the eye. Migraine headaches can also spread to the back of the head.
Other typical migraine symptoms include nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, smells and sounds.
“The term ‘migraine’ comes from the word megrim, which means ‘headache accompanied by nausea’. During a migraine attack, people feel nauseous, ”notes Green. “Speaking of migraine, it should be borne in mind that this form of headache has many varieties. They differ in sensations, but still fall within the range of its manifestations. ”
Visual disturbances, such as flashing flashes or halos around light sources, called migraine aura, may precede the headache, but most migraine sufferers do not develop a migraine aura.
There are many factors that trigger a migraine attack. These include fatigue, emotional stress, lack or excess of sleep, skipping meals, bright or flickering lights, strong odors, loud noises, certain foods, and changes in temperature and humidity.
The development of migraine also appears to be influenced by genetic factors, as 70% of migraine sufferers report at least one close relative with a history of migraine.
Early-stage migraines can be successfully treated without prescription pain relievers, but some available prescription drugs can be used both to prevent and reduce attacks and to relieve acute migraine headaches.
Daily medication may be required to treat chronic migraines and prevent headaches behind the eyeballs.
Cluster headache is characterized by multiple, frequent, short, and extremely painful headache attacks.These periods of cluster pain can last for weeks or months, followed by a period of remission when no headache occurs for months or years.
This type of headache usually appears rather quickly, sometimes with an aura, and can last up to three hours. Symptoms include excruciating pain (often a headache behind one eyeball) that can spread to other parts of the face, head and neck, redness and swelling of the eyes, and excessive tearing.
It is believed that the cause of cluster headaches can be disorders in the hypothalamus (the part of the brain that controls many vital functions of the body).To date, there are no established mechanisms of occurrence and methods of permanent elimination of cluster pain behind the eyeballs.
Treatment of this type of pain focuses on reducing the severity of pain, shortening the period of pain and preventing future attacks. Some of the most popular treatments are oxygen therapy, triptan injections, and local anesthetics.
Sinuses are air-filled cavities in the facial bones.They are located at the back of the nose, inside the forehead and cheeks, and behind the eyeballs. A sinus infection (sinusitis) is a common cause of pain, including headaches behind the eyeballs.
Migraine headaches are often misdiagnosed as headaches caused by sinusitis. Treatment for headache caused by sinusitis consists of treating the underlying infection with prescription antibiotics and decongestants.
Eye diseases that cause headache in the area behind the eyes
In conclusion, it is necessary to note a number of eye diseases and other problems that can cause headaches behind the eyeballs.These include:
Glaucoma is an eye disease that affects the optic nerve and causes peripheral vision loss, blurred vision, difficulty adapting to darkness, and halos around light sources.
A specific type of glaucoma called acute angle-closure glaucoma can cause nausea and severe headache behind the eyes. If you experience these symptoms, you should see your ophthalmologist immediately.
Scleritis is an acute inflammation of the sclera of the eye or the outer covering of the eyeball.
Symptoms most commonly caused by autoimmune disorders include headache behind the eyeballs, redness of the eyes, conjunctivitis, watery eyes and blurred vision, and sensitivity to light.
Optic neuritis or inflammation of the optic nerve, accompanied by eye pain or headache behind the eyeballs, blurred vision, loss of color vision, floating flies, nausea and loss of vision.
Graves’ disease is an autoimmune eye disease associated with a malfunction of the thyroid gland.It is characterized by bulging eyes, eyelid retraction, limited ability to move the eyes, redness of the eyes or conjunctivitis, double vision, and loss of vision.
In some cases, Graves’ disease can also cause a headache behind the eyeballs.
When to see an ophthalmologist
If you have unusual headaches behind the eyeballs, don’t risk it: see an ophthalmologist immediately.
If the whites of your eyes are discolored or you have nausea or vision problems with headaches, these are signs and symptoms of an acute attack of glaucoma that can lead to permanent vision loss.
MIGRAINE, CLUSTER HEADACHES OR SOMETHING WORSE? Find out what causes the headache behind the eyeballs. Find an optometrist nearby and make an in-person or virtual appointment.
Page published in November 2020
Page updated June 2021
90,000 Post-traumatic headache – treatment, symptoms, causes, diagnosis
Post-traumatic headache occurs after a head or neck injury.In fact, headache is the most common symptom that people experience after even a mild traumatic brain injury.
Pain may begin immediately or one week after injury. For many patients, especially those with severe trauma, headaches can be a problem for months, years, or a lifetime. If headaches develop within 2 weeks after injury and persist for more than a few months, it is considered a chronic phase of post-traumatic headache.Sometimes patients have headaches only a few months after the injury, but as a rule, the headaches usually start within a few hours or days after the injury.
It is very difficult to predict the possibility of developing chronic post-traumatic headache in trauma patients. In general, patients with a pre-existing headache or migraine have a higher risk. Patients with a family history of migraine may be at increased risk of developing chronic headaches.The severity of the injury can also help predict, but many patients have severe headaches for months or years after a trivial head injury. Auto collisions with a rear impact, without head injury, usually result in severe headaches and neck pain. Factors such as the angle of impact, where the patient was seated in the car, and where the force vector on the head fell are key elements in the development of headaches.
Headaches are generally of two types:
- by type of HDN, which can be daily or occasional
- migraine headaches, which are usually more severe.
In some patients, post-traumatic migraine pain can be a serious problem, with recurrent severe headaches lasting from hours to days. In other patients, tension headache is the predominant problem. In many patients with PTHB, pain can be mixed.
Occipital pain is often associated with neck pain and is usually of muscle origin.
Types of injuries that cause post-traumatic headaches
- Car accidents
- Sports injuries
- Neck pain
- Headaches worse with exertion, coughing, bending or moving the head
- Double vision
- Memory Violations
- Loss of appetite
- Hearing impairment
- Nausea and vomiting
- Changes in smell or taste
- Problems with concentration
- Ringing in the ears
- Noise sensitivity
- Light sensitivity
- Sleep problems
- Muscle cramps in the head, neck, back and shoulders
The International Headache Society defines criteria for post-traumatic headache, such as:
- Headache that does not have typical characteristics and meets criteria C and D
- Presence of a head injury with all of the following symptoms:
- Without and with loss of consciousness, which lasted no more than 30 minutes
- Score on the Glasgow Coma Scale (- which is used to assess the level of consciousness after traumatic brain injury) equal to or greater than 139010
- Symptoms diagnosed as concussion
- Headache develops within seven days after traumatic brain injury
- One or the other of the following:
- Headache resolves within three months after head injury
- The headache has not disappeared, but the injury was less than three months ago
To diagnose this type of headache, as a rule, such types of studies as MRI, CT, PET, EEG are used, since a clear visualization of morphological changes in brain tissues and the exclusion of conditions that threaten a person’s life are required.
Medicines are the cornerstone of treatment. During the first three weeks of a headache, abortive medications are usually used. If the headaches continue after three weeks, then additional therapy is prescribed.
The choice of abortive therapy depends on the type of headache. The main medications for the treatment of post-traumatic tension headaches are analgesics, NSAIDs.Muscle relaxants are more effective for PTHB than for common tension headaches due to the presence of cervical muscle spasm. But these drugs are only recommended for 1-2 weeks. If the pain persists, then in this case it is necessary to include preventive treatment. If post-traumatic headaches are of a migraine nature, then the same drugs are used as for migraines. Antiemetic drugs are effective for many patients. Primary abortive migraines include: Excedrin, aspirin, naproxen (Naprosyn or Anaprox), ibuprofen (Motrin), ketorolac (Toradol), Midrin, Norgesic Forte, Butalbital, Ergotamines, Sumatriptan, corticosteroids, drugs, and sedatives.
During the first 2 to 3 weeks after the injury, abortive drugs such as anti-inflammatories are usually given. Most patients do not need to take preventive medications on a daily basis, and PTSD headaches gradually decrease over time.
The most commonly used prophylactic drugs are antidepressants, especially amitriptyline (Elavil) or nortriptyline (Pamelor) and beta-blockers.NSAIDs are often dual-use drugs, functioning as both abortive and preventative treatments. Antidepressants that are sedating, especially amitriptyline, often reduce daily headaches while also normalizing sleep. In severe cases, both beta blockers and antidepressants must be used. Non-drug treatments can include various physiotherapy and acupuncture.
90,000 Migraines: What Is It? – MEDFAMILY
Migraine is a disorder in which recurrent headaches of moderate to high intensity are the main symptom.They are localized, as a rule, in one half of the head, have a pulsating character, and last from 2 to 72 hours. Migraines are often accompanied by nausea and vomiting, less often visual impairment, noise or bright light intolerance. Sometimes migraine attacks can cause poor coordination of movements and the appearance of hallucinations. In some patients, the onset of an attack is preceded by the appearance of a whole complex of symptoms called an aura – among them flashes of light, numbness of the fingers, problems with speech.
Migraine differs from the usual headache accompanying fatigue or being a symptom of any disease in the nature of the pain and the absence of any organic causes that cause it.
People, regardless of age, suffer from migraines, but it is noted that most often the disease debuts at the age of 20-30.
Many believe that only women suffer from migraines, but this is far from the case! The disease affects people of both sexes – both women and men.Statistics, however, are that the disease occurs in women about three times more often – apparently, this is the reason for this common misconception. Approximately two thirds of migraine cases are familial. Migraine affects approximately 15% of the world’s population.
Factors provoking migraine attacks:
Certain foods and addictions (cheese, chocolate, and dry red wine), skipping meals, inadequate nutrition, excess coffee intake, and inadequate water intake.
Sleep – a change in sleep patterns, both lack of sleep and excessive sleep (the so-called weekend migraine).
Psychological factors – emotional stress or, oddly enough, relaxation after stress.
Hormonal factors in women – menstruation, use of hormonal contraceptives.
Intense physical activity, long journeys, especially with a change of time zones, bright or flickering lights, strong odors.
Despite the fact that many associate their headaches with various weather changes, no scientific research has been able to confirm this connection.
Lack of timely treatment of migraine leads to the development of the following complications:
Persistent headaches that are difficult to relieve.
How is migraine treated?
Migraine treatment includes two approaches:
help during an attack;
preventive measures to reduce the intensity and frequency of attacks.
Symptomatic drug therapy, i.e. is aimed at reducing the intensity of attacks and is effective only with timely administration of drugs.
Drug therapy for migraine is divided into two types.
The selection of an effective specific analgesic for relieving migraine attacks and adherence to the correct medication can be very effective.
Formation of a plan for preventive therapy for migraine. This treatment is aimed at reducing the frequency of headache attacks. For this purpose, drugs from different groups are used (b-blockers, anticonvulsants, antidepressants, botulinum toxin type A, and others).Most of them were originally developed to treat other conditions, but have proven to be effective for migraines as well.
For the prevention of migraine attacks, it is successfully used in medicine: physiotherapy, acupuncture, acupuncture, hirudotherapy, kinesio taping.
In fact, the condition itself is not life-threatening, but regular severe headache seriously impairs the quality of life of patients.Researchers have found that people with migraines are more likely to have strokes, heart attacks, and other heart problems. In addition, patients experiencing migraines are several times more likely to suffer from various mental disorders, are prone to depression and neuroses, often experience panic attacks, and are three times more likely to commit suicide than those who do not suffer from this condition. All this indicates that migraines are a serious risk factor affecting health, well-being and life expectancy.
It must be remembered that not every headache is a migraine !!!
Symptoms characteristic of migraine may indicate other, more serious diseases, therefore, if they are present, it is necessary to consult a neurologist for a thorough examination and a correct diagnosis.
90,000 What are the symptoms of neurosis and how to treat it? Look on the website of the medical center “Medyunion”
Chronic stress and constant mental overload can lead to unpleasant consequences in the form of the development of neurasthenia.An unstable emotional state affects a person’s work and personal life. But neurosis, like any other disorder, can be cured with the help of professional specialists and various therapies. We will discuss this in more detail in this article.
What is neurasthenia and how does it develop?
Neurosis develops as a consequence of a disorder in the activity of the brain, namely the part that is responsible for the adaptation of a person. The consequences of neuralgia can affect not only the mental and emotional state of the patient, but also negatively affect the work of various systems of the body and internal organs, since everything is interconnected in the human body.
Anxiety triggers a strong rush of adrenaline, which increases the secretion of pituitary hormones and insulin, which regulate the thyroid gland. These hormones increase the likelihood of panic attacks.
How to distinguish neurasthenia from other disorders?
People with emotional distress experience different feelings more emotionally than everyone else. Anger, anxiety, despair, aggression, envy are just some of the manifestations of neurosis in humans.During such states, the patient experiences an increased level of stress, so negative situations are perceived by him more sharply and seriously than they really are.
Neurosis is based on traumatic circumstances, psychological trauma, stress, or prolonged emotional and intellectual overstrain. Neurasthenia is often faced by people who have recently experienced a serious emotional shock, the loss of loved ones.
People suffering from neurosis often deny their feelings, emotions, try to distance themselves from their own reality.They find it difficult to control and manage their emotions. The disorder distorts the patient’s rational thinking and prevents him from functioning normally in the family, social and work spheres of life.
Symptoms of neurosis
Pathology manifests itself both on a physical and psychoemotional level. Physical symptoms include increased sweating, heart palpitations, chest pain and dry mouth, headaches, blurred vision, tremors of the extremities, skin rashes, and menstrual irregularities in women.
Psychological symptoms: a feeling of loss of control, a person’s feeling that he is “going crazy”, fear of sudden death, excessive anxiety, high sensitivity and vulnerability.
- Constant feeling of tiredness and apathy;
- Increased sensitivity;
- Social isolation;
- Frequent and unexpected mood swings;
- Sleep and wakefulness disorders;
- Loss of interest in life or in certain areas of it.
It is the constant feeling of anxiety about one’s life or the life of loved ones that causes insomnia in a person. Sleep problems do not allow the body and nervous system of a person suffering from neurasthenia to fully relax. This, in turn, further exacerbates all of the above symptoms.
Therefore, for insomnia, experts recommend several simple and effective rules:
- Observe the daily routine, that is, try to fall asleep and wake up at the same time;
- Go in for sports, giving the body a light load;
- Be outdoors more often;
- Reduce the number of drinks containing caffeine;
- Eat light foods to avoid stomach discomfort.
For what reasons does neurosis develop?
- Strong mental activity;
- Prolonged psychological distress and anxiety;
- Psychological pressure when it is impossible to solve life problems;
- Prolonged loneliness and problems in the personal sphere of life;
- Traumatic event in life: loss of a loved one, severe divorce, difficult financial condition, if a person was subjected to emotional and physical abuse, etc.
- Inflated expectations.In this case, the person cannot achieve the desired goal and experiences the feeling of an impossible plan;
- Psychological trauma received in childhood: humiliation or beating by peers and parents, an example of a bad lifestyle on the part of adults, harsh upbringing;
- Non-observance of the work and rest regime.
Features of the course of neurosis in women
Neurosis has been diagnosed in one third of the world’s urban population.Neurology is one of the most common ailments of the nervous system – the disease occurs in every fourth of all people with mental illness. The study of the incidence of neurosis has shown that neurotic disorders are common in men and women over the age of 30. However, neurotic disorders in women are usually more severe than in men.
The reason for such conclusions is the emotionality of women. Doctors note that neurosis most often appears in expressive and emotional people.According to statistics, women are more sensitive than men.
Also, experts say that, unlike men, women suffer from neurosis almost twice as much. Menopause is considered one of the causes of neurosis in women. Any hormonal change affects our nervous system and can bring unpleasant consequences.
Perhaps, in this case, the social factor also plays a role – men are less likely to go to doctors, especially to a psychotherapist. However, today experts say that the flow of men to a psychotherapist has increased, but women are still more willing to go to the doctor for help.
Also, by the will of fate and centuries-old traditions, not only a career and daily work, but also cleaning the house, raising children, is placed on the shoulders of a woman. The tasks of a modern woman have increased, the principle “you need to be strong and hold on” firmly stuck in my head. However, this unknown force will not save you from overload and fatigue. Then you need to contact a psychotherapist for help, who will prescribe treatment. Psychotherapy sessions help to influence the cause of the neurosis, change the attitude towards a traumatic situation and facilitate the release of emotions, accelerating recovery.
Symptoms of neurosis in women
Signs of neurosis in women differ from the opposite sex due to our physiological characteristics of the body. For example, women have insomnia, frequent nightmares and sleep paralysis among the list of symptoms of neurosis, while men do not. Also, in women with neurosis, a deviation of the menstrual cycle occurs.
Doctors identify the following most common symptoms of neurosis in women:
- expressiveness of behavior;
- refusal to eat;
- violation of physical qualities: loss of strength, feeling of fatigue, loss of stamina;
- heart and headaches;
- disorders of the vestibular apparatus, imbalance
- excessive tearfulness;
- Severe mood swings.
There are several types of neurosis, one of them is hysterical, most often it is called hysteria. According to doctors, the signs of this type of disease are most often observed in women. Experts interpret hysterical disorder as an ardent desire to draw attention to the person of the sick person. The disease is characterized by demonstrative behavior. A person suffering from a similar disease often screams loudly, makes scandals, sobs sobbing.
The psychotherapists of the Medyunion Medical Center have vast experience and all the necessary resources for the successful treatment of neuroses.
Features of the course of neurosis in children
Neurasthenia is also inherent in children of younger and preschool age. The symptoms of the disorder are similar to those in adults. The difficulty in defining pathology lies only in the fact that young children often cannot explain what is happening to them and what they feel.
The child’s appetite decreases, sleep problems appear, and nightmares often occur, as a result of which the baby may even scream in his sleep and wake up without understanding what is happening.There is increased sweating, the temperature of the extremities decreases.
In addition to all of the above signs of pathology, the child may have a headache, he is sensitive to bright light and loud sounds. Also, there is often a sharp change from positive emotions to negative ones: crying, aggression and depressive states.
Experts recommend that you immediately seek help from a doctor, since neurosis in childhood is much more difficult to treat than in adults.
What types of neurosis are there and how are they different?
- Depressive. This type of neurosis is characterized by such symptoms in humans as tearfulness, sudden changes in mood, feelings of despair and helplessness. The person suffering from the disorder loses interest in life, there is melancholy. During a depressive neurosis, a person experiences low self-esteem, guilt, and frustration.
- Alarming. Often has manifestations at the physical level: dry mouth, increased sweating, heart palpitations.As a result of anxiety neurosis, there can be panic attacks and phobias. A person constantly experiences a sense of fear.
- Hysterical (“conversion disorder”) – most often manifests itself if a person has experienced a strong emotional shock or traumatic event. A change or loss of motor / sensory function occurs, indicating a physical impairment that is undetectable. For example, after an accident, a person may experience loss of speech, although there is no physical reason for this.
- Obsessive-compulsive. Obsessive thoughts and images appear. Often such thoughts have no rational grain and are catastrophic. To counteract the overwhelming anxiety, the person performs compulsive repetitive actions.
- Rehearsal. Manifested by attempts to resolve an issue that was left unfinished in the past. A person suffering from rehearsal neurosis transfers conflict relations from the past to the present and believes that this reality exists today.
- Hypochondriacal. The patient becomes too suspicious and cares too much about his health, he finds the symptoms of various diseases where they actually do not exist. A person invents himself with a terrible disease, harasses himself, there is stress or anxiety.Despite the negative tests and consultations of doctors, the patient remains convinced.
- Depersonalization. Fear, panic and anxiety appear. A person seems to be living in a dream, “disconnecting” from his own body and thoughts.
- Military or post-traumatic stress disorder. It manifests itself under very shocking circumstances, when a person saw death or was in captivity, suffered serious injuries (physical and psychological).This type of neurasthenia is manifested by very strong stress, panic attacks, and an aggressive state. Such stress is dangerous in that it can lead to disabilities, including functional disabilities that negatively affect daily life.
For example, a person thinks that everyone treats him badly or that no one likes him. As a result, he begins to behave in accordance with his ideas about others.
Neurosis and memory problems
Excessive anxiety leads to a decrease in concentration, which means that often the patient has problems with memory and attention. In order to influence the problem, you can take vitamin complexes of natural origin, as well as conduct useful memory training.
Experts recommend doing light physical activity, doing daily exercises to relieve anxiety and unnecessary anxiety.
Try not to perform multiple tasks at the same time, this will only exacerbate the problem. It’s best to remove any distractions while working or doing what you love. Such distractions include a mobile phone or any other mobile device. Turn them off when doing important things.
To reduce stress on your eyes and brain, take breaks from work and study. Don’t overdo it. You can take a walk in the fresh air or do a warm-up.
Neurosis and psychosis: what is the difference?
Often these concepts are confused or interchangeable. But diseases are different in their manifestations and the inner sensation of a person. For example, during the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder, a person retains a sense of reality and looks for new ways to adapt to it.He realizes that he is suffering from a disorder and that this suffering is the product of mental instability.
During psychosis, a person perceives the world around him differently. He adapts reality to his personal perception (often delusional), experiences hallucinations and delusions. And most importantly, what is the difference between psychosis and neurosis, the patient is not aware of his problem.
Neurosis and vegetative-vascular dystonia
As we mentioned above, during a neurosis, such signs appear at the physical level, such as a rapid heartbeat, fluctuations in blood pressure, chest pain, difficulty breathing, and so on.All these symptoms are similar to signs of a disease such as vegetative-vascular dystonia.
VSD is a complex of symptoms of various localization that occur when there are failures in the autonomic nervous system. And neurosis is a disorder of the central nervous system caused by the psyche (stress, depression, and more). Since the nervous system is connected, disturbances in one department provoke disruptions in the work of another.
How is neurasthenia diagnosed?
To diagnose and detect the disease, consultation of a neurologist, and sometimes a psychologist and psychiatrist, is needed.In the city polyclinic, you can contact your attending physician, who will write out a referral to a neurologist. However, this takes time. Often you have to wait 2 weeks for your appointment with a doctor. In some cases, this is simply impossible, since you need to quickly conduct an examination and prescribe treatment before the situation becomes critical.
Therefore, we recommend contacting the Medyunion Medical Clinic. We have practicing neurologists who do not need to wait several weeks for appointments.Sign up today for a convenient for you, and not for the remaining time, and go through the examination tomorrow.
Patients choose us because we provide a home visit service for a narrow specialist if you cannot come to the clinic on your own. You can also take tests directly at home.
Diagnostics includes interviewing the patient or his immediate family (guardians), taking anamnesis and studying the medical history. To make a diagnosis, the doctor needs to know the symptoms that bother the patient.
To exclude other pathologies, the neurologist prescribes the delivery of laboratory tests:
- Blood test;
- Ultrasound examination;
- Computed tomography;
- Magnetic resonance imaging.
The specialist will also conduct psychological tests. For example, a color technique. It consists in the fact that the patient is offered a palette of colors, from which he must choose the color he likes.Colors such as purple, gray, red, brown, black indicate a high likelihood of developing neurosis.
Methods for the treatment of neurosis
Experts propose to fight the disease using an integrated approach. This includes drug therapy, exercise and proper nutrition, sleep and wakefulness, moderate mental stress.
Medicines, first of all, are antidepressants, which are involved in the seizure of serotonin, dopamine, nopadrenaline.In addition, such agents help to block the enzyme that breaks down these hormones. This allows them to increase their volume in the general blood flow and thereby improve mood.
These drugs do not affect a person’s condition while driving a vehicle, do not cause addiction, but the effect of them occurs only a few weeks after the start of taking. The duration of the course of therapy can be up to 2-3 months.
There are also newer antidepressants that are considered safer and have fewer side effects.The duration of therapy and the daily dose is determined only by the attending physician. It is highly undesirable to take medications on your own without consulting a neurologist.
Another effective remedy is drugs from the group of tranquilizers, which affect the transmission of nerve impulses in the brain, which makes it possible to slow down the activity of the nervous system, to reduce a person’s response to a specific stimulus. The funds have a sedative and anti-anxiety effect on the body.
Personal psychotherapy allows a person suffering from a nervous disorder to build a picture of his personality, to establish the cause that led to the neurosis. The doctor helps to change a person’s view of the world around them. Recovery occurs if the patient, with the help of a specialist, realizes the cause of his fears and worries.
Meditation is also often used. With the help of psychoanalysis, you can deal with your inner world.Meditation can help reduce anxiety and create new beliefs about specific situations.
The correct diet during neurosis can reduce the load on the body. It is worth eating in small portions 4-5 times a day, adding vegetables and fruits to your diet. They contain a high concentration of vitamins and fiber, which is a building material for all body systems.
It is also best to exclude sweet, starchy foods, fried, very salty.Exclude hard and carbonated drinks. And also do not forget about the drinking regime, at least 1.5 liters of clean water per day.
Respiratory gymnastics and massage
Exercise helps to normalize the functioning of parts of the brain such as the cortex and subcortex, as well as to stimulate and calm the nervous system.
At the initial stage of gymnastics, simple exercises are performed that do not imply an effect on the muscles and do not require concentration of attention.Over time, the load must be increased.