Monday, 6 February 2012

What are headaches?

Had a hard day and return home with a bangin' headache, what did you do to get it?

Headaches are one of the major reasons why most people go into hospitals

What is a headache?

There are many types of headaches..

  • Extertional headaches
  • Bilous headaches
  • Ice pick headache (yes really!)
  • Migraines
  • Tension headache
  • loads and loads more!
A headache is basically a combination of different nerves firing off pain signals and each combination have their own fancy name.

Tension headache

Tension headache is the most common of it's kind, it affects adults, adolescents and occasionally young children.
  • Caused by muscles in the head tightening.
  • Feels like a dull constant pain
Its not actually known what causes tension headaches, many scientists reckon it's the combination of stress anxiety depression and a few other bits and bobs.

Some think it's just a mixture of brain chemicals reacting.


People go about various ways to curing their headache, from popping paracetamols to moaning on their bed (no pun intended), it's different for everyone.

Some common treatments
  • Take a shower, hot or cold it's up to you, some people find hot better, some cold.
  • Take painkillers, painkillers reduce the amount of sensory neurons which transmit pain.
  • Stop working, stress is believed to contribute majorly to headaches.
  • Yoga or Tai Chi lessons have been proved very effective against many different problems including headaches!

There's the standard headache, and then there's the migraine, the booming blast of torture that makes you clutch your head like it's a time bomb!

Why's it different?

These are a bit different than headaches, these are caused by blood vessel enlargement and a release of chemicals near these vessels.

The chemicals react and inflame your muscles nearby, giving you that scorching pain in your head.

What causes migraines?
  • Stress
  • Smoking 
  • Alcohol
  • Bright lights
  • Certain perfumes
  • Tension headaches
Do I have a migraine? Or am I just being a wimp?

Migraines are often diagnosed by the following symptoms
  • 5 or more attacks
  • A few days of duration
  • 2 different types of pain, eg. throbbing and constant
  • 1 additional symptom such as nausea, sensitivity to sound/light etc.
How to treat migraines

Congratulations, you have a migraine and it wasn't you being a wimp!

Painkillers are the big one, and so is rest! Antidepressants can help if that's the root of your headache.
Prevention is also the best treatment, intake of more beta blockers, exercise and correction of diet are few of many great preventer's of migraines!

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