Frequent Headaches: Common Types, Causes and Cures

Why do I have constant headaches?

A headache is just a part of the life as much as their head is, for most of us now. We suffer from the “headache of frequent headaches”. It makes incompetent and unfit for the routine and necessary tasks, required for our survival. Our quality of life is severely affected by the feeling of heaviness and throbbing pain in our “held high” part, the head.

Frequent headaches
Frequent headaches

The high prevalence of frequent headaches now crosses across the boundaries of race, sex, and ethnicity, becoming common to all. There are numerous causes of getting a headache. Sometimes the pain just disappears as soon it appears. In those times they are not much a reason to worry, as they are not as much a part of any dangerous condition. But they are a call for help if they are more frequent in nature. Or the frequent headaches are so severe that it is difficult for you to withstand the pain. And carry about the routine normal tasks.

What causes headaches?

Some of the most common types and causes of long-lasting, debilitating, frequent headaches are as follows:

1. Migraine

People usually visualise silvery zigzag lines or flashing coloured lights called “aura”. Migraine symptoms described are more common in the females and occur before middle age. The headache here is very severe and throbbing in nature and can last up to 3 days.

2. Tension headaches or Tension-type headaches

Even though the name explains it all, the science behind it very difficult to understand. Are the emotions so strong that when they are unsatisfactory, they can cause an entire system to malfunction?

Yes, anxiety, pressure, and stress lead to this type of dull, tight or pressure sensation in the head. The pain mostly radiates slowly from the back of your head. They present as headaches back of head.  And headaches from stress might not be relieved for a very long time. The surprising fact is that, as long as the person is occupied, the “occupant” pain is not realised. But the person starts to feel it right when they are not too busy with their chores or worsens towards the end of the day when compared to the start of the day 4.

Frequent headaches
Tension headache

3. Medication overuse headache

Even medicines in excess can poison you. The best example is the medication overuse headache. The medications that most commonly increase headaches are compound analgesia or painkillers. Headaches of this nature usually occur on persisting use for more than 10–15 days per month.

 

Medicines in excess
Medicines in excess

 

4. Other causes

Exertional headaches for instance during excessive coughing, Intracranial pressure build- up or intracranial bleeding, Infection or as referred pain from other surrounding structures like the tooth, ear, neck or the problems of the eye.

When the headaches are of these causes, it goes without saying that seeking help is more important than knowing the causes. Causes can again be spread across a wide range from injuries to infections of the surrounding structures.

Frequent headaches

 

The Red flag headaches:

You should really fix that much-procrastinated appointment with your physician if:

  1. The pain occurs very suddenly but with a high intensity that the pain shoots up over your face too.
  2. Along with headache, you experience other symptoms like any change in the facial muscles, fainting, visual disturbances, sensitivity to light, nausea or vomiting (seek immediate attention), weight loss, fever, and rashes.

How to get rid of headaches?

Migraines:

Be frequent headaches be severe or lighter regular headaches, it is highly recommended to visit the Physician and seek help. As preventive measures avoid the situations and triggers that increase the incidence of the headaches. Women who are on Oral contraceptives shall also try to avoid them, as the hormones too can exacerbate the condition.

Medication overuse headaches:

The best way to manage them is to stay away from the medicines causing the headaches. You should remember that while withdrawing, pain might be severe. But the resistance will be developed over time. If the issue still persists, consult a physician right away.

Tension headaches:

Relax! Meditate! Don’t over-think or over- worry! Seek help if you are feeling depressed.

Whatever be the reason for the regular headaches or frequent headaches, management is all about seeking help at the right time. So, stop worrying and start caring for yourself!

References:

  1. Davidson’s principles and practice of medicine.
  2. Diagnosis and Management of the Primary Headache Disorders in the Emergency Department Setting by Benjamin Wolkin, Friedman MD, MS, Brian Mitchell Grosberg MD
  3. Causes and Management of Thunderclap Headache: A Comprehensive Review by Linn, F. H.H. MD, Ph.D.; Wijdicks, E. F.M. MD, PhD
  4. The Association of Frequent Headaches with Personality and Life Events by J. Passchier, J. Schouten, J. van der Donk L.K., J. van Romunde

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