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Headaches

Headaches

Headaches are a common health problem that cause a throbbing, uncomfortable and distracting pain in the head. There are many different kinds of headaches that cause different symptoms.

Types of headaches

There are more than 150 types of headaches, and each can fall into two main categories: primary and secondary headaches.

Primary headaches

Primary headaches occur when the pain is the condition. This means that the headache isn’t being triggered by something else. The most common primary headaches include:

  • Tension headache
  • Cluster headache
  • Migraine

Secondary headaches

Secondary headaches are caused by an underlying condition, such as a neck injury or sinus infection. The most common secondary headaches include:

  • Allergy or sinus headache
  • Hormone headache
  • Caffeine headache
  • Exertion headache
  • Hypertension headache
  • Post-traumatic headache

Symptoms of a Headache

Common symptoms of a headache include:

  • Tightness sensation in the head
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Pain in the eyes when looking into bright lights
  • Vertigo
  • Dizziness

Causes of a Headache

A primary headache is caused by the overactivity of pain-sensitive features in the head. Primary headaches can be triggered by lifestyle factors, such as stress, alcohol, certain foods, changes in sleep or lack of sleep, and poor posture.

A secondary headache is a symptom of a disease or condition that triggers pain-sensitive areas in the head. Possible causes of secondary headaches include sinus infection, traumatic injury, dental problems, high blood pressure, certain medications, dehydration and more.

Treatment for Headaches

Treatment will depend on the cause of the headache. Treatment options may include:

  • Over-the-counter pain relief medications, such as NSAIDs
  • Prescription pain relief medications
  • Other treatments for underlying conditions

Several alternative forms of headache treatment are also available, including:

At Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation of NY & CT, we offer a variety of personalized treatments to help you find relief. To learn more about which treatment is right for you, schedule an appointment today!

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