Tag Archives: Tension headache

What is Causing Your Headache?

Whether it is a dull, insistent throbbing or a sharp sudden pain having a headache can ruin your day.  There are many types

Cluster headache
Cluster headache (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

of headaches and many causes for them both organic and inorganic that you should take note of.  Headaches can interfere with your life but some may not be cause for worry, while others should be taken very seriously indicating an immediate trip to the hospital is necessary.

Categories of Headaches

There are five main types of headaches and getting to the root cause of your headache can depend on what type of headache you have.  The headache categories include:

Tension – This is the most common type of headache and the pain will be centered around the temples or at the back of the head or neck.

Cluster – These occur more commonly in men than in women.  They come in cycles of severe, debilitating pain, usually on just one head of the head.

Sinus – They usually occur when the sinuses are inflamed causing pain.  A sinus headache can be caused because the sinuses are infected.

Rebound – These headaches occur when you’ve had too much medication to help reduce or eliminate the pain of a previous headache causing it to reappear or rebound.

Migraines – The pain associated with a migraine can be moderate to severe occurring only on one side of the head and face.  You can be nauseous, vomiting, have light sensitivity and a number of other symptoms with a migraine.

Causes of Headaches

Cluster headache

There can be several reasons why a headache occurs, especially when you have a tension headache.  The main causes of headaches, such as a tension headache include:

  • Stress
  • Bad posture
  • Eye Strain
  • Addictives in Food
  • Depression or Anxiety
  • Lack of Sleep
  • Lack of Food

The reasons for cluster or migraine headaches can be more complicated and often the cause can be unknown.  It is believed there is a genetic link for migraines but that isn’t the only reason someone may have one.  Migraines can also be caused or triggered from consuming chocolate or caffeine as well as poor sleeping patterns, fluctuations of hormones in women because of their menstrual cycle or pregnancy can produce a migraine.  A change in the weather such as a drop in barometric pressure before a thunderstorm can cause migraines in some people as well.

Cluster headaches are a more rare form of headache but they can be agonizing for the person affected by them.  They come in groups or cycles sometimes going months or years without reoccurring.   During a cluster period the headaches may only occur once a day but sometimes they can appear several times in one day.  They can last anywhere from 15 minutes up to two hours and the attacks often appear around the same time each day within a 24-hour period.

Cluster headache
Cluster headache (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Aside from the pain cluster headache symptoms include redness in the eye on the side of the headache a swollen nostril on the same side of the headache restlessness and like a migraine there may be a sensitivity to light or sound but just on the affected side of the head.  Though the causes for these headaches is unknown it is suspected the hypothalamus is involved because the cluster headaches occur in a clock-like manner and the hypothalamus is the body’s biology clock.

With any headache if you have a severe, sudden headache, experience nausea or vomiting, if it’s accompanied by fever, a stiff neck, confusion, seizures or comes on after a head injury, call your doctor or go to a hospital emergency room immediately.

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