What actually is a Tension Headache

People often wonder what actually a tension headache is or how it is different from a migraine headache? Well, after going through this article, I am sure you would’ve found the answer.

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Tension headache is commonly described as a mild to modest pain in your head and feels like having a compressed strip around your head. This headache occurs most frequently and is also known as a stress headache.

This headache has two main types, chronic tension headache and episodic headache. Chronic headache can last for days having a robust pain while the episodic tension headache is for about 30 minutes or so.

Causes of Tension Headache

There is not a single cause responsible for tension headache. But more often, they are caused by stress, whether from school, friends, family, or work. If we talk about episodic ones, they are initiated by a single stressful condition. Chronic tension headache, on the other hand, is triggered by daily stress.

Tension headache usually doesn’t run in families, and its leading cause is compressed and compact muscles in the cervix region. These compact muscles are caused by:

  • Bad Posture
  • Not enough rest
  • Fatigue
  • Hunger
  • Anxiety
  • Mental or emotional stress
  • Depression
  • Alcohol use
  • Low iron levels
  • Caffeine
  • Dental problems

Symptoms of Tension Headache

There are numerous symptoms of this type of headache. Below, some of the most common symptoms of tension headache are listed. Let’s have a look!

  • Headache that starts late in the day
  • Mild to modest pain in the head
  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Feeling exhausted
  • Trouble focusing
  • Muscle pain

Intension headache, you won’t experience symptoms such as blurred vision or muscle weakness. These are symptoms of migraine headache and are known as nerve symptoms. Also, tension headache doesn’t cause stomach pain, severe sensitivity to light, nausea, or vomiting.

Treatment of Tension Headache

It is better to treat tension headache at the very beginning when the symptoms are not that severe. The main goal of treatment is to relieve the pain you already have and prevent its severity. For prevention, you can:

  • Use medicines
  • Avoid its causes
  • Cope up with your stress
  • Follow relaxation methods
  • Try a hot bath, better posture, or ice packs.

Over-the-counter (OTC) painkillers are mostly the treatment of tension headache. If these painkillers don’t work, your doctor may prescribe muscle relaxants. Various drugs used for the treatment of this type of problem are antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs, or blood pressure meds. However, you must keep in mind that medications don’t treat this headache permanently. These are only used to relieve pain at that time and can have side-effects as well.

Tension Headache Vs Migraine Headache

There’s not much difference between tension and migraine headache and is often difficult to distinguish. If you have a tension headache, you can also have a migraine. The fundamental difference is that tension headache isn’t associated with vomiting or visual disturbances. Physical activity can increase migraine headache; however, it has no effect on a tension headache.

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