Medicine & Health
18 stycznia 2019

Headaches - where do they come from and how to act when they appear?

They are one of the most common ailments affecting society. They can be a nuisance and make it impossible to function during the day. They can be caused by an inappropriate lifestyle or herald symptoms of a serious illness.

Causes and types of headaches

Headache is not always an alarming symptom. It can accompany a bad mood after a sleepless night, herald an infection or a cold. In a correct medical classification, primary, spontaneous headaches include migraine, tension and cluster pain. They can also be triggered by sexual activity, coughing up, or awakening at night. Secondary headaches, on the other hand, are related to mechanical changes in the intracranial structures, i.e. large venous vessels, arteries or cerebral tyres.

They are often associated with head or neck injuries, eye, ear, nose, sinus and tooth diseases. They also accompany more serious ailments such as haemorrhagic stroke or malignant hypertension. The most dangerous and requiring an immediate reaction are sudden, very severe headaches. They may be a symptom of subarachnoid hemorrhage or other life-threatening condition. Also worrying are pains occurring for the first time in people over 50 years of age, or changes in the nature of previous ailments. Also popular are so-called headaches from reflections, which occur in people who abuse analgesics, which in this case are themselves the cause.

Migraine - how to recognize it?

To diagnose migraine, there must be >5 headache seizures, lasting from 4 to 72 hours, located on one side, pulsating in nature, moderate to significant intensity and intensifying during normal physical activity. During a seizure, nausea or vomiting and hypersensitivity to sound or light occur.

How to prevent headaches?

First of all, it is necessary to take care of the hygiene of everyday life. Avoid stressful situations, eat calmly, take care of the body's regeneration and try to keep the sleep from 7 to 9 hours a day. Regular irrigation by drinking at least 1.5 litres of water a day can be irreplaceable.

What to do when pain occurs?

In case of mild to moderate headaches, oral NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), including acetylsalicylic acid, or combined preparations, e.g. paracetamol and NSAIDs with caffeine or ergotamine, are recommended. If one medication proves ineffective, you can try another one from this group. In case of severe and moderate migraine headaches, drugs from the group of tryptans are recommended. However, pregnant women at an early stage of pregnancy are treated with NSAIDs, while in the third trimester of pregnancy and breastfeeding they are absolutely contraindicated.



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