What Are the Different Types of Headaches?

Nearly everyone can recall the feeling of having a persistent headache that interferes with their day. What you may not know is that there are over 150 different kinds of headaches that can erupt without much warning and some can pose a serious threat to your health.

At LA Pain Doctor, our interventional pain specialists, Firas Hijazi, MD, and Satvik Munshi, MD, know how disruptive persistent and recurrent headaches can be. They offer on-site diagnostics to identify the root cause of your headache and can customize a care plan to both treat and prevent different types of headaches.

4 of the most common headache types

While there are many different types of headaches, there are four common types that can reduce your quality of life. These include:

Tension headache

A tension headache is typically triggered by stress. When you have this type of headache, you feel a dull, aching sensation all around your head.

Tension headaches can also make you feel like a band is tightening around your head and your neck might feel sore and stiff.   

Cluster headache

Cluster headaches generally won’t last very long, but they can be extremely painful. This rare type of headache occurs cyclically, and you may notice that you have a cluster attack at the same time each day.

Symptoms of a cluster headache include:

A cluster headache can last for weeks or even months at time and each episode can last from 30 to 90 minutes. It’s also possible to go long periods without any cluster headaches before attacks occur again.

Migraine headache

Migraines differ from other types of headaches due to their symptoms. A migraine can cause head pain so intense that it becomes disabling.

You may feel a severe throbbing sensation that is usually isolated to one side of your head and it’s not uncommon to experience nausea and vomiting as a result of the pain.

People with frequent migraines often develop an increased sensitivity to light, sound, and strong smells. You also might experience blurred vision, neck pain, and mood changes because of your head pain.

Sinus headache

The common cold or a sinus infection can cause pressure to build up in your sinus cavities, which triggers a sinus headache.

You might have a sinus headache if you have symptoms, such as:

A sinus headache is a secondary type of headache and usually resolves when the inflammation and infection are treated.

Finding the right relief for your type of headache

There are treatments you can use to address headache pain and preventive strategies our LA Pain Doctor team can recommend to help you find relief of your persistent or recurring headache.

We offer a variety of medications to treat existing pain, shorten the duration of your headaches, and to prevent additional headache pain.

For severe pain from chronic migraines, you might benefit from Botox® injections. Botox is a prescription medication that temporarily paralyzes the muscles that contribute to migraines to treat pain and prevent recurrent migraines.

You might also benefit from different types of nerve blocks to address migraines and other types of severe headaches. Our LA Pain Doctor specialists offer in-office treatments to target nerves responsible for headache pain, such as:

We can also work with you on identifying the root cause of your headache triggers and help you reduce your exposure to them. Learning stress management techniques can reduce your risk for head and neck pain caused by tension headaches.

To find out more about treatment options available for headaches, call the LA Pain Doctor office nearest you or book an appointment online today. We have locations in Metairie, Laplace, Harvey, and New Orleans. We’re excited to share that our new Luling office (12371 Hwy 90 Luling, LA 70070) will be opening March 4th!

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