Headache Types: The Facts You Need to Know

Dr. Thomas Anderson Blog

Bottom Line:

Death, taxes, and…headaches? Almost everyone will experience a headache at some point in their life, and over 50% of people will deal with the effects of headaches in a given year. Fortunately, headaches are rarely life-threatening. However, for people dealing with chronic headaches…they can dramatically impact your quality of life.

Why it Matters:

The International Headache Society has classified over 150 different types of headaches. The most common are migraines, tension and cluster headaches. Knowing what kind of headache you’re dealing with is the first step towards finding the best plan of care to find relief.

  • Migraine: sensitivity to light and sound is common during migraine headaches, and approx. 1/3rd of people will experience an aura before the onset of a migraine.
  • Tension: almost everyone will experience a tension headache during their life. Stress, anxiety, dehydration, and even posture, can trigger a tension headache.
  • Cluster: affecting more men than women, cluster headaches causes severe pain behind or around the eye and can last anywhere between 15 minutes to 3 hours!

Next Steps:

Now that you’ve identified your headache type, we can start to unpack the root cause. Next week, we’ll cover the top 3 causes of headaches so you will be able to take your first steps towards prevention. Often a few simple changes in your daily routine have the potential to reduce or eliminate chronic headaches for good! And if you have questions in the meantime, just ask!

Science Source:

Mayo Clinic. Headache. 2018