HEADACHES

A headache or cephalalgia is pain anywhere in the region of the head or neck. It can be a symptom of a number of different conditions of the head and neck

 

  • Cluster headache

  • Migraine (with and without aura)

  • Tension headache (medically known as tension-type headache)

  • Trigeminal autonomic cephalalgia (TAC), including cluster headache and paroxysmal hemicrania

  • Chronic daily headaches

  • Cervicogenic headaches

    • Greater occipital neuralgia

    • Occipital tendinitis

    • Cervical facet joint arthritis

    • Wipelash injury (sprain/strain)

  • Other etiologies

COMMON HEADACHES

Recognize emergency symptoms

Seek emergency care:
A headache can be a symptom of a serious condition, such as a stroke, meningitis or encephalitis. Go to a hospital emergency room or call 911 or your local emergency number if you have the worst headache of your life, a sudden, severe headache or a headache accompanied by:

  • Confusion or trouble understanding speech

  • Fainting

  • High fever, greater than 102 F to 104 F (39 C to 40 C)

  • Numbness, weakness or paralysis on one side of your body

  • Stiff neck

  • Trouble seeing

  • Trouble speaking

  • Trouble walking

  • Nausea or vomiting (if not clearly related to the flu or a hangover)

 

Treatment depends on your diagnosis and symptoms

The treatment is depends on the diagnosis and symptomes. The first step in treating headaches is to determine what type you have. Sometimes headaches are a symptom of another disease or condition. In other cases, no clear cause can be found. When headaches occur, signs, symptoms and any triggers are very important.  Treatment for any underlying diseases or conditions often stops headaches. When no underlying diseases or conditions are present, treatment focuses on prevention.

 

Tension-type headaches

  • most common headaches:

  • tight band around your head

  • Usually mild to moderate pain on both sides of the head

  • triggered by stress, neck strain, missed meals, depression, anxiety or lack of sleep

  • occur occasionally or more than 15 days a month (chronic)

  • last from 30 minutes to an entire week

 

Treatment:

  • over-the-counter medicationsAspirin

    • Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others)

    • Acetaminophen (Tylenol, others)

  • alternative therapies aimed at stress reduction

    • Meditation

    • Relaxation training

    • Cognitive behavioral therapy

    • Biofeedback

    • Massage

 

Avoiding Headache Triggers

If you identify factors that trigger your headaches -- such as certain foods, caffeine, alcohol, or noise -- try to avoid these triggers. To learn more about what triggers your headaches, keep a headache diary that includes answers to these questions.

 

Chiropractic and Osteopathy to Treat Headaches

When muscle strain causes tension headaches, a chiropractor may be able to ease the strain by spinal or cervical manipulation and realignment.

Osteopaths are also able to supplement their treatment of headaches by using various forms of manipulation and soft-tissue techniques to the head, neck, and upper back.

 

Biofeedback and Relaxation and Headache Control

Biofeedback and relaxation techniques can be effective for headache relief.

Electromyographic (EMG) biofeedback helps you control how specific muscle groups react to stress. This may help prevent or relieve tension headaches.

 

Headaches and Mind-Body Medicine

Hypnosis, deep breathing, visualization, meditation, and yogamay provide relief from pain by relieving system-wide stress and tension. This may help for tension headaches. Hypnosis may lower your perception of pain.

Cognitive behavioral therapy mixes meditation and relaxation with education in coping skills, motivation, and behavior. With the help of a psychotherapist you can learn to change negative thoughts and attitudes, modify the way you respond to stress, and possibly help avoid tension headaches.

 

Acupuncture for Headaches

Several studies have shown that acupuncture may help relieve tension and migraine headaches.

 

Botox for Headaches

Botox, widely known for use as a cosmetic agent, has been FDA approved to prevent chronic migraine headache in adults. Chronic migraine  means having a migraine headache 15 or more days per month for more than 3 months . To treat chronic migraine headache, Botox is given about every three months as multiple injections around the head and neck. 

 

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845-454-7100
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