Headache is one of the most common symptoms and complaints in which people seek the advice of doctors. This symptom is not specific and manifests as pain (dull, sharp, oppressive, arched, cutting, burning, pain, etc.) in different parts of the skull or throughout the head.
Not infrequently, headaches tend to occur in the cervical region.
The appearance of headaches can be caused by external factors that are not pathological conditions and internal pathological processes that sometimes require immediate treatment.
According to statistics, eighty percent of the adult population on Earth has a headache from time to time, and thirty percent of the population has a constant headache that interferes with normal performance and ability to live .
If the headaches are infrequent and are of a short-term nature, or are caused by pronounced external factors (stress, tension, noise, etc.), then you can not consult a doctor.
What are headaches and why do they arise?
The frequent occurrence of pain in the head is explained by the fact that it is inside the skull where most of the pain receptors are located. Pain perception occurs and receptors are located outside the skull.
The process of headache formation involves not only the veins on the surface of the skull, the bone of the skull itself and the diploa, the spongy tissue that lies between the inner and outer layers of the skull.
The appearance of a headache can be caused by any pathological condition that acts on the pain receptors described above.
This symptom accompanies a great variety of diseases, or when it is influenced by external factors. It is important to assess the nature of the pain (breakage, cramping, pressure and acute or intense pain, feel the pain inside or outside the skull, etc.).
To apply the most effective treatment, during the examination, doctors must determine the full picture of the nature of the headache, the mechanism of its occurrence and the symptoms that accompany it.
The following factors are taken into account in the diagnosis:
- The duration of pain attacks. (Long short)
- The location of pain centers. (temples, crown, forehead, occipital, unilateral or pain throughout the head)
- How often do you fight? (rare, frequent pains)?
- Before the onset of pain, there is some symptom. Or does the pain start sharp and sudden?
- Definition of the accompanying signs of nerve disorders. (dizziness, nausea and desire for emetic, jumps in blood pressure, visual and speech disorders).
Types of headaches
Classification of headaches
According to its classification, this symptom is divided into two groups, depending on the origin of the pain:
In addition, these two groups are divided into subtypes of headaches.
Primary pain includes:
- Histamine (beam) headache – This is a very sharp pain in the head, around the eyes on one side of the face. The duration of the painful attack is approximately four hours. In most cases, with beam pain, there is redness of the eyes, runny nose and tears.
- Different types of migraine., Being a neurological disease, it manifests itself in separate or constant episodes of pain in the head on one side of the head, lasting more than four hours. In some cases, it can occur when following a strict diet.
- Tension headache – It is the most common type of headaches. It is characterized by pressure, or tension of the head. Its duration can be from a couple of minutes to seven days. Most of the time it appears after psycho-emotional stress, stress or problems with the muscles of the cervix, the face
- Sinus pain. It is characterized by the appearance of pain in the forehead and cheekbones.
The head can also hurt as a result of secondary types of headache, whose causes are pathological processes or physical damage to the head (head injuries).
Severe secondary headaches can occur if the following factors are observed:
- Consequences of mechanical damage to the skull or spine in your cervical region
- Pathologies located inside the skull.
- Pathologies of vessels located in the cervical region, or skull.
- Prolonged use of certain types of medications or abrupt cessation of the course of therapy
- Damage to the body due to viruses and infections.
- The appearance of pain, as one of the symptoms of diseases of the oral cavity (severe toothache), respiratory tract, etc.
The definition of the group of the disease, additional research and prescribed treatment, is carried out by a qualified physician.
In addition, headaches are classified according to the degree of severity of the sensations taken.
- Mild degree In this way, pain in the head does not interfere with the ability to work and human life. Just take a pill to stop them.
- Medium grade At this stage, the headache interferes with the normal work process, but can be stopped with the help of folk remedies or medications.
- Hard stage At this stage, the pain in the head torments the affected, causing great pain. Such pains are lasting and interfere with the work process.
Causes of pain in the head.
The causes of headaches are several factors that can be severe pathological conditions that occur within the human body and external factors that are not pathological.
Acute, strong and regular headaches indicate pathology, with its constant onset, an urgent need to consult a doctor. It will accurately determine the name of the disease and prescribe an effective treatment, or completely exclude the fact of the pathology.
The following factors can cause a headache:
- Vascular pathologies. These include spasms (constriction) of the arteries, decreased blood circulation due to vasoconstriction of the atherosclerotic plaques on their walls, closure of blood vessels with blood clots, large amounts of blood in the vessels, which leads to an increase in blood pressure, as well as lack of oxygen in the skull
- Blood pressure too high or too low
- Organic pathologies of the brain. These include tumor formations of benign and malignant characters located in the brain and compressing certain parts of it, trauma to the head, inflammatory processes such as meningitis (inflammation of brain tissue) or meningoencephalitis (inflammation of brain tissue and brain fluid)
- Migraine This disease, in most cases, is subject to young women. In addition, a migraine can be inherited.
- Oxygen hunger, What happens when there is insufficient blood supply to the brain, or the result of insufficient saturation of the body with oxygen. In addition, the lack of oxygen in the blood can be observed with the death of red blood cells, or a decrease in the protein of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen through the body.
- Metabolic disorders.
The appearance of headaches is observed in the following situations, but does not indicate pathological conditions of the brain and disappears as soon as the primary factor stops.
- Pathological conditions of the mouth, eyes, cervix, teeth, sinuses, and other structural units of the face and skull
- Emotional stress They are the most frequent cause of headache. The pains are provoked due to constant stress or severe acute, mental effects. Stressed nerves, with prolonged exposure to them, lead to the development of complications.
- Damage to the body of individual drugs, or chemicals. Lead, carbon monoxide, benzene, alcoholic beverages, caffeine, oral contraceptives: all of them can affect brain damage with toxins, which will cause headaches.
- Infectious diseases (ARVI, influenza, etc.). With such diseases of the body, the general body temperature increases, which leads to the fact that a person is worried about the headaches. After treating an illness, they disappear.
- Strong physical and intellectual burdens.
- Strong tension of the muscles of the head.
- Acute climate changes
- Osteochondrosis of the cervical spine. In this pathological condition, the pain may be permanent or episodic. The location of the pain occurs in the neck and neck, with the spread in the temples. The reasons for this can be a strong physical effort in the neck, or sleep in the wrong posture.
If a person is completely healthy and begins to have a frequent headache, then, in most cases, this leads to an incorrect lifestyle, a small amount of rest, a constant workload and lack of exercise. .
Tension headache is muscular.
What is headache due to special tension?
This type of headache is not related to age and gender. Tension headache is the most common form, which appears from a variety of influencing factors.
The most frequent are fatigue, stress, excitement, physical activity.
In addition, the pain of stress can be caused by many everyday factors, such as the gusting wind, a small amount of oxygen in the room, the transfer of heavy loads, the use of alcoholic beverages, the list can continue for a long time.
Their manifestations are also unstable.
According to the descriptions of the patients, it is characterized by the phrases: “headache”, “pain when walking”, “pressure in the head”, “pain in the head” “like a head in a helmet”. This type of headache has an inherently uniform constriction and pain that does not have a pulsation.
The force of pain is an individual indicator. Most of the time, it is accompanied by aggressiveness, nervous instability, general fatigue, loss of sleep, aggressive perception of light and loud sounds.
With the defeat of tension headache, there are no episodes of nausea and vomiting. In addition, pain is not the character of acute attacks, its definition is dull and prolonged pain.
In addition, the tension headache is divided into an episodic form, which lasts from thirty minutes to two weeks (no more than six months), and chronic, which persecutes the patient constantly.
The characteristic of the chronic form is monotonous (without acute pain), painful, which leads to depression, apathy and aggression. All about your treatment can be found only at the reception of a qualified specialist.
In this state, a person needs to be examined. In case of tension headache, it is necessary to consult both a therapist and a neurologist.
What is a special cluster headache?
This type of headache is a very rare type associated with the vessels. It occurs in one percent of the world’s population and, in most cases, affects men (up to eighty percent).
In women, cluster pain is observed an order of magnitude less frequently, and only after serious surgical operations caused by gynecological problems.
Because of the nature of the pain, it is a bit like a migraine, but it maintains certain differences, the main ones of which are:
- Hot flashes (groups), which appear as a series of pains
- Duration of up to thirty seconds, up to several minutes, after which it stops for a time of five minutes to an hour, and resumes again. These groups can appear up to six times a night, for several days.
- With the clusters, the head, so gravely ill, stopped abruptly.
- The breaks between episodes can last several years.
- The pain is unilateral, acute in its nature and very severe.
In medicine, there are cases in which people committed suicide, experiencing group pain.
The determination of the causes of such sudden onset headaches is not fully understood, nor is the scheme for the development of the pains themselves explained.
Nowadays, it is believed that pain causes:
- Serious interruption of the production of hormones (testosterone).
- Expansion of the carotid artery (read its location)
- Damage to nerves located on the eyes, causing pain in the eyes (one of the symptoms of such pain).
According to the feelings that the patients transmit, with cluster pains, they are described as: “severely burning the eyes”, “sharp pain inside the eye and the brain”, “real torture” and many other terrible sensations as if They were removing the skin of a person or the acid falls.
Such a headache has pronounced symptoms:
- Increased sweating
- Stuffy nose
- Red eyes, possible tearing.
- Placement of the ear, with the appearance of pain “behind the eyes”.
The first attack is characterized by unilateral pain, with repeated relapses, pain is observed throughout the head.
Traditional methods for treating headaches do not lead to the desired effect. If group pain occurs, it is recommended to contact qualified specialists immediately to provide effective assistance.
Headaches in pregnancy
In the period of carrying a child, headaches are characteristic of such a condition. The triggers of headaches are the same factors as ordinary people.
But pain can occur frequently, since the mother’s body is undergoing major restructuring, even in hormonal terms.
These factors make a pregnant woman more sensitive and causes frequent pain inside the head.
Since, during that period, the level of circulating blood increases, and the hormonal background changes and there is a delay in the body fluid, the migraine often progresses, resulting in a frequent headache.
Migraine can not be seen in women before pregnancy and begins only during the period when a child is born. There is no reason for panic, the expectant mother, most of the time, is healthy and the migraine stops after the end of pregnancy.
A large number of problems and create loads in the spine, which in the period of loading a child becomes stronger. The load on the spine can lead to osteochondrosis of the cervical region, which can lead to malnutrition of the brain and cause the appearance of a frequent headache.
In addition to them, the future mother, with cerebral malnutrition, may experience fainting, which is dangerous in this position.
Women, in the period of having a child, feel acutely when they do not have enough oxygen. With an unhealthy diet, a sedentary lifestyle, little is in the fresh air, this explains why the headache began to hurt.
A constant feeling of nausea, desire to emetizar, dizziness, associated with pain in the head, are signs of toxemia and are accepted as the natural state of a woman who carries a child.
With the appearance of headaches in a pregnant woman, you should not try to stop them yourself, since the use of drugs can damage the condition of the fetus.
You should contact a qualified neurologist who will select the most effective and safest treatment.
Self-medication during pregnancy does not lead to anything good.
Headaches in children.
The occurrence of pain in the head in children is as frequent as in adults, only children can not accurately describe the location of pain. They can simply begin to behave capriciously, emetic impulses are observed, which are often considered as the defeat of the child’s body by diseases of infectious origin.
At a later age, children mainly characterize the pains with a phrase “headache”, pointing to the area of the forehead. Up to fifty percent of the cases, the pain is of vascular nature, whose cause is the vegetovascular dystonia.
It has been shown that the onset of migraine development can begin in childhood (up to twenty-five percent of total morbidity), marked by intense pain, which mainly affects girls than boys.
In addition, headache triggers in children are usually diseases and their complications are acute respiratory viral nature, in the form of sinusitis and sinusitis.
A pediatrician, or a pediatric neurologist, prescribes a therapy that will help stop the headaches of children. In the latter case, the profession is so rare that such a doctor can be found only in large cities or in private clinics.
If there are severe and severe headaches, or this condition torments the patient for a long time, then it is necessary to perform an examination that helps to accurately diagnose which diseases cause pain, or confirm the absence of it.
An initial examination of the patient is performed, their clinical history and additional symptoms are studied. If you suspect certain diseases, the doctor may prescribe additional studies.
Additional laboratory and instrumental methods for studying the body with fainting are:
- Clinical blood tests. It shows the general health of the patient and deviations from the normal values of the elements that saturate the blood.
- Biochemical blood test. When the indicators fluctuate in one or the other direction, it is possible to determine not only the affected organ, but also the extent of its damage.
- Lipidogram. Blood test for cholesterol
- Urine analysis With this study, doctors control the level of hemoglobin and red blood cells in the urine
- Ultrasound (ultrasound) of cerebral vessels. You can visually see the state of the vessels, determine their passage width and diagnose possible vascular contractions.
- Angiography of the brain and spinal cord.. A contrast agent is injected into the vessels, followed by an x-ray of the skull.
- Doppler sonography. It is an additional study to ultrasound, with which the speed of blood flow in the vessels is determined.
- Duplex scan of the head and cervical vessels.. The simultaneous use of Doppler and ultrasound, which provides the most accurate results of the study.
- Ecoencephaloscopy (Eco) – Research method of intracranial pathologies, which is based on the echolocation of brain structures.
- Electroencephalography (EEG) – Recording of electric waves characterized by a certain rhythm.
- MRI of the head. It gives complete information about the state of the body and describes in detail the state of the head to the subject of damage.
MRI of the brain
Treatment of headache
To stop the headaches, it is necessary to eliminate the cause that caused them.
The traditional medicines used in the home (paracetamol, spazmalgon, etc.) help only with pain at one time, which is caused by external factors. Chronic pain requires deeper treatment.
The treatment of persistent pain is to eliminate the root cause, causing such effect:
- If the pain is due to trigeminal neuralgia, which is very strong and burning, it suddenly emerges (similar to a group one) and provokes a desire to commit suicide, but not to suffer. In most cases, they stop with the help of Phenibut, Carbamazepine, Baclofen and their analogues.
- For the treatment of migraine headaches., individual medications are prescribed, since there is no defined treatment regimen, since one patient needs to expand blood vessels and others to reduce
- If the pain is caused by high blood pressure, then use the means to reduce it and medications that normalize vascular tone. The massage, the correct sleep pattern, adequate rest and the rejection of bad habits are effective.
- If the pain is due to osteochondrosis of the cervical spine, and located on the forehead and temples, help the non-steroid media, against inflammation, providing an analgesic effect (Ketorol, Ibuprofen, Naproxen, etc.), muscle relaxants, as well as combat spasms.
The above are just some of the parameters for a possible treatment.
Since headaches can cause a wide range of diseases and what to treat, you must choose individually, depending on the primary pathology.
How to eliminate a headache with folk remedies?
The treatment of headache depends not only on the root cause, but also on its location. Therefore, in the period of loading a child, dealing with medication is extremely dangerous.
When headaches do not recommend drinking coffee, it will be better to have a cup of sweet tea.
So that the head does not hurt, at home without the use of drug therapy, you can apply the following methods:
- Hot shower It will help to expand blood vessels and relieve blood pressure in them. If you can not put your head under hot water, you can warm your hands only with water.
- Lemon slice It should be peeled and applied with the wet side to the temples, until a red spot appears on the skin.
- Broths for the head. The most popular are the decoctions of mint and oregano. Mix the herbs well and drink the tea.
- Thick wool bandage It will help to warm the head and expand the glasses.
- Head and neck massage Relieves tension and improves blood flow.
- Aromatherapy. Rub one or two drops of rosemary or lavender essential oil into the whiskey
- Menthol ointment. It is necessary to lubricate the front part and the area of the temples with such ointment.
- Balm star It will help to effectively stop pain, spread, as menthol ointment
- Sleep It helps to relax and relieve pain.
The use of traditional medicine is allowed only for pain at one time after exposure to obvious external factors.
If the pains in the head appear regularly, then they are associated with pathological conditions and require a medical examination.
The preventive actions consist of an adequate nutrition, with the saturation of the body with versatile vitamins and minerals, maintaining the balance of the water, reducing the time they spend in the covered rooms and in the heat, avoiding the psycho-emotional stress, eliminating the bad ones habits and a more active lifestyle.
The fulfillment of these truths will help to improve blood circulation, as a result of which the brain will be stable and will regularly receive enough oxygen and micronutrients.
What is the prognosis?
The prognosis in this case depends on what caused the headache (root causes). When external factors or certain viral diseases affect the body, as well as during pregnancy, the pain disappears more frequently after removing the factors of influence and rest.
And with the progression of pathological conditions, the prognosis depends only on its type and stage of development.
Since the range of provocative factors is quite diverse, Only an experienced doctor can make an accurate prognosis based on an examination and an examination of the body.
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