The most common types of headaches that cause people to seek medical attention are primary headaches, tension headaches, migraines and cluster headaches,. Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. Tension headaches are the most common type of headache among adults and adolescents. They cause mild to moderate pain and come and go over time.
They usually have no other symptoms. Others share migraine symptoms, such as nausea or sensitivity to light. If your head beats, you're not alone. Headache is one of the most common pain conditions in the world.
Up to 75% of adults worldwide have had a headache in the past year. Tension headaches are a common headache often provoked. Pain can vary from person to person, but it is usually felt throughout the body as a dull, aching sensation. Tenderness or pain may also occur around the muscles of the neck, forehead, or shoulders.
Most tension headaches can be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers to relieve symptoms. Sinus headaches occur when the sinus cavity becomes inflamed due to allergies, illnesses, or dry weather, says the American Migraine Foundation (AMF). They are associated with deep, persistent pain in the cheekbones, forehead or bridge of the nose. Pain often increases with sudden head movements and occurs with other sinus symptoms, such as runny nose, fever, and facial swelling.
Sinus headaches are treated by reducing the accumulation of mucus that causes sinus pressure. Over-the-counter decongestants and antihistamines and prescription steroid nasal sprays may help relieve symptoms. A sinus headache may be a symptom of a sinus infection, which may require prescription antibiotics to treat the infection and help relieve headache and other symptoms. Exertional headaches can occur immediately after periods of intense physical activity.
Running, lifting weights, and having sex are common triggers for exertional headaches. These short-term, stabbing headaches can occur on both sides of the head and are easily treated with over-the-counter pain relievers and melatonin. Unlike typical headaches, migraines can cause throbbing pain on one or both sides of the head, dizziness, nausea or vomiting, fatigue, and sensitivity to light, noise, or smell. Migraines may be preceded by visual disturbances, such as halos, flashing lights, zigzag lines, or blind spots.
Many women often experience headaches related to hormonal fluctuations. Menstruation, pregnancy, menopause, and hormonal contraceptives affect estrogen levels and cause headaches. It is estimated that about 60 percent of women with migraines also suffer from menstrual migraines, headaches associated with any part of the menstrual cycle, says the Cleveland Clinic. The symptoms of headache can help the doctor determine its cause and appropriate treatment.
Most headaches are not the result of a serious illness, but some may be the result of a life-threatening condition that requires emergency care. A primary headache is caused by hyperactivity or problems with pain-sensitive structures in the head. A primary headache is not a symptom of an underlying disease. Chemical activity in the brain, nerves, or blood vessels surrounding the skull or muscles of the head and neck (or some combination of these factors) may influence primary headaches.
Some people may also carry genes that make them more likely to develop such headaches. Some headache patterns are also generally considered primary headache types, but they are less common. These headaches have different characteristics, such as an unusual duration or pain associated with a certain activity. A secondary headache is a symptom of a disease that can activate the pain-sensitive nerves in the head.
Any number of conditions that vary greatly in severity can cause secondary headaches. Some types of headache can be prevented with medicines, while others can be caused by the same medicine. The hypothalamus, an area located at the base of the brain, is responsible for the body's biological clock and may be the source of this type of headache. Once you know the type of headache you have, you and your doctor can find the treatment that is likely to help you and even try to prevent it.
You may be more susceptible to this type of headache if you use over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers often. Headaches are a common complaint, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that almost half of all adults will have experienced at least one headache in the past year. There are many different types of headaches with various symptoms, severity levels, and treatment options. However, repeated attacks or certain types of headaches may indicate a more serious health condition.