There is no permanent cure for any type of headache. They can be effectively treated, however, especially if you know what type of headache you commonly experience.
While the symptoms of headaches are often stopped or controlled with medication, lifestyle changes can also help alleviate some of the underlying causes of headaches in most instances.
The most common type of headache is the standard tension headache. These usually hit you in the middle of the day and are often related to stress. Symptoms include:
- Throbbing dull ache in a band around your head
- Pain radiating down your neck
- Sore muscles
If you suffer from infrequent tension headaches, called episodic, you may not need to do much more than take some over the counter medication to alleviate symptoms such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
Chronic tension headaches may need to be addressed and treated therapeutically with:
- Stress management
- Massage therapy
These are a form of vascular headache caused by a combination of vasodilatation and the release of certain chemicals from the nerves in the brain. These chemicals trigger the feelings of pain and inflammation.
Because of the prevalence of migraines, several drugs were manufactured specifically to combat these types of headaches, including:
- NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
- Tiptans like Imitrex, Zomig, and Amerge
- Cardiovascular drugs
- Anti-seizure medications
Some of the most painful headaches reported are known as cluster headaches. These appear with sudden pain and great intensity. Some dentists feel that these headaches produce the most pain that humans endure. They disappear as suddenly as they appear and come in cycles.
There is no cure for cluster headaches and a lot of effort is dedicated to prevention. When an attack occurs, there are several abortive treatment options used including:
- Oxygen administered at 7 to 10 liters per minute can provide dramatic relief
- Dyhydroergotamine, administered intravenously or though an inhaler
- Local anesthetics administered in nasal drops
Preventative treatment options include:
- Nerve block
- Calcium channel blockers
Other Types of Headaches
Treatment of other headaches is typically managed by treating the underlying causes of the headache. These are known as secondary headaches. Traumatic brain injury or medication-induced headaches should be diagnosed and treated by a dentist.
In some cases, life-threatening illnesses are overlooked because people write off a headache as a minor nuisance that will go away. If you suspect your headache is in any way abnormal or comes on like a thunderclap, you should seek medical attention. Medical treatment should be sought if your headache is associated with neck pain or severe cough.
Seek relief from your headaches symptoms by calling 1-800-865-6468 to schedule a comprehensive evaluation at Think Better Life.