5 Causes of Common Headaches

When we experience head pain, it is necessary to pay attention to it immediately in order to avoid it turning into a migraine that will affect our life
5 Causes of Common Headaches

Last update: 12 May, 2022

Currently, headaches are one of the symptoms that most people seek medical help for. They often occur so often and with such intensity that they cause those who are experiencing them to feel alarmed and anxious. 

In the majority of cases, headaches can be linked with:

  • Stress
  • Colds
  • Dehydration
  • They are also associated with collateral symptoms of conditions, like cervical contractures

Depending on the specific area of the head where it shows up, they can be mild, acute and intense. Some patients describe them simply as oppression in a certain zone of the head, which causes an almost intolerable discomfort.

Possible causes of headaches

However, the majority of headaches are not a sign of any condition that we should worry about too much or that we should consider an urgent issue.

1. Tension migraine

This condition is one of the most frequent causes of headaches and one of the most recurring reasons for neurologic consultations.

It starts with a pounding sensation in the temples or around the eyes, which creates tension in the neck and face. At the same time, this generates extreme sensitivity in the scalp.

Tension migraines tend to show up at the end of the day, when fatigue and stress from the work day have accumulated. Because of that, their principal causes are: poor sleep, insomnia, hormonal changes, stressful situations and, even, possible episodes of depression.

2. Occipital migraine

It is a condition that is accompanied by the emergence of pinching at the base of the skull.

When suffering from this, the person tends to complain of pain in their upper neck and, in some cases, the pain moves to their jaw. 

3. Focused migrainous neuralgia

This is a type of headache in which the pain shows up on one side of the head and continues until it affects the other half.

And it tends to occur after the sudden release of histamine or serotonin in the body caused by excessive alcohol consumption, taking too much of a medication or overexertion during physical activity, though those aren’t the only causes.

4. Vascular headache

Head pain associated with vascular headaches should be very closely watched in order to avoid any future complications. 

In the majority of cases, there is no reason to worry. However, it is important to be aware of other signals that could be related with cerebrovascular accidents:

  • You feel that the pain increasing, making you bend over, cough or have to lay down.
  • You have difficulty with some movements or speaking
  • The pain lasts for more than three days
  • You are experiencing convulsions or fainting
  • Fever, nausea or vomiting

Talk to a specialist if your experience one of these issues, especially if you already suffer from vascular problems. Remember that prevention is the key.

5. Neck pain

Another cause of headaches, and one that tends to go unnoticed in clinical screenings, is neck pain. This condition is caused by mild accidents or poor posture.

It is characterized by muscular deterioration in the neck and weakening of the stability of the vertebrae.  At the same time, it causes spasms in the neck that cause throbbing in certain areas of the head.

Making changes to your daily routine

Modifying your habits can help you to alleviate your headaches. For example, maintaining a healthy diet that includes fruits and vegetables, as well as keeping an eating schedule, can help you to reduce your headache episodes.

Keeping your body properly hydrated is another factor to consider. Drink two liters of water a day to keep your body healthy. Also, avoid drinking products that contain caffeine and alcohol.

Exercise frequently. This will help you reduce stress and tension episodes that we experience, like headaches.

Avoid sleepless nights. Resting properly and sleeping the number of hours that your body needs optimizes your daily performance. It also contributes to the disappearance of discomfort linked to headaches.

If you are experiencing recurring headaches, or pain around your eyes, jaw or the lower part of your skull, talk to a specialist. A health professional is the only person who can rule out any condition that may be serious.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.