What is the medical definition of headache?
- Headache or head pain sometimes can be difficult to describe, but some common symptoms include throbbing, squeezing, constant, unrelenting, or intermittent. The location may be in one part of the face or skull or may be generalized involving the whole head.
- The head is one of the most common sites of pain in the body.
- Headache may arise spontaneously or may be associated with activity or exercise. It may have an acute onset or it may be chronic in nature with or without episodes of increasing severity.
- Headache is often associated with nausea and vomiting. This is especially true with migraine headaches.
What are the different types of headaches?
- Head pain can be classified as being one of three types: 1) primary headache, 2) secondary headache, and 3) cranial neuralgias, facial pain, and other headaches.
- Common primary headaches include tension, migraine, and cluster headaches.
- Medication overuse headache (rebound headache) is a condition where frequent use of pain medications can lead to persistent head pain. The headache may improve for a short time after the medication is taken and then recur. (The term “rebound headache” has been replaced by the term “medication overuse headache.”)
How do I relieve a headache?
- Home remedies for tension headaches, the most common type of primary headache, include rest and over-the-counter (OTC) medications for pain.
What could headaches be a sign of?
- Secondary headaches are usually a symptom of an injury or an underlying illness. For example, sinus headaches are considered a secondary headache due to increased pressure or infection in the sinuses.
- Individuals should seek medical care for new-onset headaches or if headaches are associated with fever, stiff neck, weakness, change in sensation on one side of the body, change in vision, vomiting, or change in behavior that may be caused by the development of serious infections.