Headaches: What’s causing yours?

Headaches are one of the most common ailments in the world, yet there are so many different kinds of headaches and each of them are caused by something else. We take a look at the different headaches and what you can do to treat them.

A headache is a pain that stems from your head or neck – and the source of the pain can from the muscles, sinuses eyes or ears.

What causes headaches?

Tension headaches are the most common and are caused when muscles in the shoulders, neck, scalp and jaw are tightened. The cause of tension in these muscles may be linked to depression, anxiety, stress or an injury to the head or neck. Tension headaches typically start from the back of the head and extend forward, and they also occur on both sides of the head across the temples.

Sometimes, sleeping with your head in an abnormal position can cause you to wake up with a headache or develop on later in the day.
Cluster headaches are painful headaches that recur throughout the day, over a long period of time. These headaches are usually part of a cycle, and can appear and disappear over the course of a few months.

Sinus headaches occur in the sinuses and are a result of swollen or irritated sinuses, which can be caused by colds, flu or allergies.

What’s the best way to treat a headache?

Certain headaches are caused by dehydration. If you’re not sure if you’re dehydrated, drink a large glass of water – if the headache goes away then that was most likely the cause.

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In most cases, headaches can be treated successfully with over-the-counter medication, such as paracetamol may be all you need. For more intense headaches, you can take an anti-inflammatory such as ibuprofen. Whatever you do, remember to always follow the dosage instructions, as it’s dangerous to take more than the recommended dosage of either of these medications.

Sources: medicine.net, Mayo Clinic