Common Types of Headaches and How to Identify Them

Common Types of Headaches and How to Identify Them

Headaches can be a pain to deal with, but did you know there are a number of different types which can be caused for various reasons? According to the Cleveland Clinic, there are more than 150 different types of headaches. While we won’t go through all of them, there are seven common types that you should know about: tension headaches, sinus headaches, exertion headaches, hormone headaches, cluster headaches, hypertension headaches, and migraines.

Tension headaches are often triggered by stress and are characterized by a dull, aching sensation felt all over the body. Sinus headaches occur when the sinuses become inflamed and are usually associated with a persistent ache in the cheekbones, forehead, or bridge of the nose. Exertion headaches can occur immediately following intense physical activity and are short-lived. Hormone headaches can be caused by hormonal changes during periods, pregnancy, menopause, or from using hormonal contraceptives.

Cluster headaches are a severe form of headache that can occur multiple times a day and continue for weeks or even months. Hypertension headaches are caused by intracranial hypertension, which is a build-up of pressure around the brain. These headaches can be a complication of high blood pressure or caused by conditions that affect the brain.

To identify these different types of headaches, pay attention to the location and quality of the pain, as well as any accompanying symptoms. For example, tension headaches are typically felt all over the body as a dull, aching sensation, while cluster headaches are characterized by sharp, burning or piercing pain on one side of the head.

Treatment options for these headaches vary depending on the type and severity. Over-the-counter pain relievers can help alleviate symptoms of tension headaches and sinus headaches. For cluster headaches and hypertension headaches, it is important to consult a specialist for appropriate treatments. Lifestyle changes, such as stress reduction and hormonal balance, may also help manage hormone headaches.

If you experience persistent or severe headaches, it is important to seek medical attention and consult with a healthcare professional. They can provide a proper diagnosis and recommend appropriate treatment options to help manage and alleviate your headaches.

Sources: Cleveland Clinic, University of Southampton, NHS

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