Headaches can occur for a number of reasons, ranging from stress or tension to medical conditions. The pain that occurs with headaches differs in terms of how severe it is, how persistent it is, where it occurs, and whether or not there are other symptoms with it. Some headaches are associated with sharp pain that comes and goes, while others have a dull pain that lingers.
There are several kinds of headaches, including cluster headaches, migraines, tension headaches, chronic headaches, sinus headaches, concussions, and ear infections. Some of these headaches, such as migraines, are considered primary headaches that occur on their own. Other headaches are known as secondary headaches, which occur along with the presence of another condition, such as sinusitis or high blood pressure. Tension headaches typically affect the front of the head, while migraines can affect one side of the head only.
Doctors conduct a physical exam and order imaging tests as needed in order to rule out possible causes and determine what is causing this pain. Imaging tests, such as CT scans, provide doctors with an in-depth look at what is going on inside the brain and what might be affecting it. When doctors make a diagnosis, they can then determine the most suitable course of treatment.
The type of treatment needed for a headache depends on what kind it is, how often it occurs, and how mild or serious it is. Treatment also depends on whether or not there are any other symptoms occurring as well. For many headaches, over-the-counter pain relievers, rest, and limited activity provide adequate treatment. Persistent or chronic headaches or headaches that are severe, such as migraines, might require other forms of treatment. Secondary headaches typically resolve when the underlying condition that triggers them is treated or managed.
Chiropractic care is designed to relieve tension and pressure along the spine. When tension builds up in the upper spine, headaches can occur. Spinal manipulation that is done to restore proper alignment can help ease headache pain.
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