That headache has been bothering you for quite some time now. But you just can’t seem to figure out the cause for it. Read on to learn about the different types of headaches that can hound you
We have all complained of headaches at one time or the other. Headaches are of various kinds hence it is important to understand what the cause of your headache is. Simply explained a headache is a pain in any part of the head. They may be of different sensations such as throbbing, piercing or a dull distant ache. Headaches may occur on either side of the head or sometimes both. The duration of a headache also varies from type to type. Some of the common categories of headaches include:
1. Tension headaches
The most common headaches are tension headaches, explains Dr Amitav Ray, consultant neurologist, Apollo Hospital, “They are characterised by pain in the eyes and front of the face.” Tension headaches are characterised by dull pressure on the head, fatigue or even a feeling of lightness. In some cases it may result in a loss in appetite. A visit to a doctor is advised if the headache becomes very frequent and makes it difficult to do your day to day activities.
“Migraines are felt on only one side of the head. Many people experience different symptoms such as stars or lights in front of the eyes. It can also cause nausea and motions. They can occur at any time of the day,” explains Dr Amitav. One of the most common triggers of migraine is lack of sleep, he adds. A severe migraine if not treated may also cause paralysis. When a person is suffering from a migraine he is usually advised to drink water to avoid dehydration, rest in a room which is cool, dark and quiet. Depending on the intensity the doctor may prescribe certain medications also.
Sinusitis is also a common cause of headache. “Sinuses drain mucous into the nose. When the mucous gets blocked it causes an infection known as sinusitis,” explains Dr EC Vinaya Kumar, head of department, ENT, Apollo Hospital. This results in a nose block, nasal discharge and sometimes a bad smell. Acute infection can also cause fever, he adds. “Sinus infections usually go down as the day progresses, the headaches caused due to sinusitis is usually dull and not like a migraine,” he adds.
Cluster headaches occur in clusters over a period of time and are similar to migraines.
“Rebound headaches are said to happen due to continuous abuse of pain medicine. Our body may stop responding to that medicine hence will not help reduce a headache,” mentions Dr Amitav. But what about medication that is being taken for a particular reason you may ask say for example migraine? Dr Amitav explains, “Migraine medication is of two types namely preventive medication and medication taken to subside a migraine. Preventive medication has to be taken else it may cause a relapse.” It is important to take care and precaution when it comes to strong medication and must be taken only on the doctor’s advice.
Visit your doctor
“Headaches could also be due to a change in power so getting your eyes checked is advised. In case a person experiences headaches early in the morning, a change in the intensity of his headache or a headache plus weakness on one side of the body they should visit a doctor immediately as it could be an infection or even perhaps a tumour,” advises Dr Amitav. Various kinds of infections could also cause headaches, adds Dr Vinaya.
Relax and Rejuvenate
After a long day at work we may experience a headache, the best way to distress according to Dr Amitav is to play sports or any activity which relaxes you.