Six Common Types of Headaches, Symptoms and Treatments

Do you have a headache? You are not alone. Headaches are one of the most common conditions of the nervous system, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In fact, about half of all adults have had a headache at least once in the past year. While all headaches may seem the same, there are actually several types of headaches.

6  Common Headache Types

1. Tension type headaches

Tension type headaches are one of the most common types of headaches. They cause discomfort and tenderness in your face, neck, head and shoulders. You might also feel pressure behind your eyes and sensitivity to light and sound. Tension type headaches are often the result of stress, anxiety, depression and other factors that cause the muscles of your head, neck and shoulders to tense up. This tightness can start in your shoulders then spread up into your neck and head to cause headache.

Applying ice or heat to the affected muscles can alleviate the pain of tension type headaches. Chiropractic care can help melt away muscle tension.

 

2. Migraines

Migraines are the result of inflammation and dilation of blood vessels. Migraine symptoms include throbbing pain on just one side of the head. You may have a heightened sensitivity to light, sound, and smell. Nausea and vomiting are also common alongside the headache pain of migraine.

This is one of the types of headaches you do not want to ignore. Treatment for migraines includes non-prescription or prescription pain relievers, nerve pain medications and therapies, such as spinal manipulation that focuses on aligning the bones of the upper neck.

 

3. Sinus headaches

Sinus headaches are the result of sinusitis, which is a swelling of the sinuses due to a sinus infection or allergy. Head pain from sinus headaches may range from mild to moderate. Symptoms of sinus headaches include dull throbbing around the eyes, cheeks and forehead. Nasal congestion and runny nose may occur.

Treatment for sinus headaches includes over-the-counter pain relievers and nasal decongestants.

 

4. Secondary headache

A secondary headache is the result of something else, such as a head injury or caffeine withdrawal. Injury can cause misalignment between the individual bones of the spine, known as subluxations, which pinch the nerves responsible for sensation, movement and blood flow to your head. Misalignments can also cause muscles soft tissue strain leading to secondary headache. The symptoms of a secondary headache depend on the location of the injury.

Treatment for secondary headaches usually consists of treatment for the underlying cause and pain relievers. Chiropractic care can correct subluxations and ease soft tissue strains to alleviate many secondary headache symptoms.

 

5. Rebound headache

You may experience a rebound headache if you have been taking pain relievers for a long time to alleviate a chronic headache. Also known as medication overuse headaches, can result from taking painkillers every day for more than 15 days in a month. Symptoms may include nausea and vomiting, fast heart rate, sleep problems, and restlessness, anxiety or nervousness. The only treatment for a rebound headache is to stop taking the medication that started it. Symptoms fade within one to three weeks.

 

6. Head injury headaches

Even minor bumps and blows to the head can result in head injury headaches. Symptoms may develop immediately after the injury, or head injury headaches may develop weeks or months later, which make them difficult to diagnose. These headaches can occur daily; they can also persist for weeks or months. Treatment includes pain relievers and treatment for the underlying injury.

 

Chiropractic care can help alleviate head injury headaches and other kinds of headaches. BackFit Health + Spine has a full medical staff that includes a chiropractor, physician, family nurse practitioner and physical therapist that can diagnose, treat, monitor and even help prevent all sorts of headaches.

For more information and a complementary assessment, contact BackFit today.