Over the past 4 days, I have been experiencing some serious headaches. In the past, I experienced them all. The underlying ones, the ones that pinch, sting, zap, or slice. The ones that take away your ability to see. The ones that are sensitive to light, movement, sound, or pressure. Self caused, or naturally occurring, I feel that I have experienced the small, medium, and migraine. This headache spree that I am going through right now is, what I think, a sinus headache. I can feel the liquid moving around in my head whenever I stretch my face, or move my eyes side-to-side. A proper headache can debilitate you and render you helpless. These were doing just that.
But sometimes it’s hard to know exactly which kind you have. Is it really a sinus headache?, or is it a similar headache with similar symptoms? Medications are the most common remedy for the sledgehammer in your head, but if you don’t know what you have, how can you best fight it? Well, compiled below, for your viewing pleasure and further knowings, is a list of the common types of headaches Doctors see.
Some common types of headaches are (with added help from Dr. Goadsby, director of the Headache Center at the University of California, San Francisco., and Dr. Flippen, associate professor of neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.):
Rebound Headaches- Much like overuse of nasal decongestants can lead to a perpetually stuffy nose, rebound headaches are chronic headaches caused by medication overuse.
Tension Headaches- This is the most common type of headache, which usually feels like a constant aching or pressure – rather than throbbing – on both sides of the head or at the back of the head and neck. Otherwise known as the “Stress Headache.”
Dental Headaches- There are dental-related conditions that can trigger headaches or face pain, such as bruxism and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
Migraine Headaches- Migraines are severe headaches that are three times as common in women as men. The cause isn’t clear, but genes do play a role, and brain cell activity may affect blood vessel and nerve cell function.
Caffeine Headaches- You love your coffee, but it can be a cruel companion. For example, if you have two cups of coffee every day at 9 a.m., and then miss those cups when you oversleep on Saturday – boom! – you can end up with a caffeine withdrawal headache.
Orgasm Headaches- Orgasm-induced headaches are caused by, well, having an orgasm. You learn something new everyday.
Early Morning Headaches- If you’re waking up in pain, there are several possible culprits. Migraines are more likely to happen in the morning, or medication may be waning in your body as you sleep, which causes a rebound headache, Dr. Goadsby says.
Ice Cream Headaches- Brain freeze! Most people have experienced the shooting head pain that can occur while enjoying a icy cold drink or treat on a hot day. People with migraines may be especially prone to them.
Chronic Daily Headaches- If you have a headache at least 15 days per month for more than three months you’re considered to have chronic daily headaches, says Dr. Goadsby.
Menstrual Headaches- As if PMS wasn’t bad enough, the sudden drop in estrogen right before your period can sometimes trigger migraines, Dr. Flippen says.
Sinus Headaches- These types of headaches win the gold medal for overdiagnosis, according to Dr. Goadsby. People with migraines often mistake them for sinus headaches. (One study found that 88 percent of people with a history of sinus headaches probably had migraines instead.) Symptoms like sinus pressure, nasal congestion, and watery eyes can happen in both types. Who knows, maybe this was my problem, ha.
Emergency Headaches- Most headaches aren’t an emergency, but there are a few symptoms that warrant rapid attention, says Dr. Flippen. One is a sudden onset headache that is quickly “explosive.” Another is when a headache comes with a fever or extreme rise in blood pressure, or if it occurs after a blow to the head or exertion.
With this exhaustive list of different kinds of headaches, you can start to see why some people would just chalk a headache up to…tension, sinuses, or just call them all migraines. But that is why I am here. With this list, you can know exactly whats going on in your head, and how to fix it. (see below for resources on different methods to fix headaches) Now, I’m gonna stop typing and go take a nap, cause this headache is killing me.