Expert Health Articles

Headaches

According to the World Health Organization one-third of adults worldwide have suffered from a headache in the past year. Among the most common disorders of the nervous system, headaches are characterized by consistent, recurring pain in the head. They can range from a dull ache to severe migraines—a type of headache that inhibits one’s ability to function.

Individuals between the age of 35-45 years old most frequently suffer from migraines. Stresses related to personal and societal burdens, disability, damaged quality of life and financial costs are often associated with migraines. This could be correlated to the increases in stresses related to work, family and personal responsibilities that individuals within this age range typically carry.

The four types of headaches are sinus, cluster, tension and migraine.

Sinus headaches are most commonly caused by congestion or inflamed sinuses. These headaches usually stem from a bad cold or seasonal allergies. Symptoms include pressure-like pain on a specific part of the face, tenderness of the face and congestion.

Cluster headaches are relatively uncommon. These headaches affect fewer than 1 in every 1,000 adults. This type of headache is characterized by its frequent but brief recurrence and its severity. Pain typically focuses around one eye; eyelid droopiness, tearing and redness of the eye are common side effects.

Tension headaches are generally the most common type of headache. These headaches are stress related. Tightness similar to that of having a band around the head can spread into or from the neck with the tension headache.

Migraine headaches are the most severe form of headaches. Migraines are caused by the activation of a mechanism that releases pain-producing inflammatory substances around the nerves and blood vessels of the head. Pain is typically one-sided, pulsating, nauseating pain that can last for between 2-3 days with moderate severity.

If any of these headaches describe pain that you’re experiencing, meeting with a pain specialist may be the next step to take towards being pain-free.

Thomas Kindl, MD
Pain Management

Blanchard Valley Pain Management