Headaches: Causes, Risks & Treatments

What are Headaches?

Headaches are your body’s way of telling you that something is not right either with your heart or with your brain. However, most times in our environment, we just abuse painkillers like paracetamol or panadol and continue our activities without finding out what is causing that headache.


Yeah, I know, there is no money & it is not this common headache that would be taking you to the hospital.

However, you should not call all headaches common. Here, let me tell you the types of things that can cause you to have headaches.

Causes of Headaches

headache can be a sign of emotional distress or just stress, or it can be due to an underlying medical disorder. The causes may be divided into:

  • Primary (benign): e.g. migraine, tension headache, cluster head-
    ache, thunderclap headache (p. 639).
  • – Secondary: e.g.
  • Tumours: headaches can be a sign of various growths and tumours in the brain. It is important to investigate.
  • Medication overuse: abuse of some drugs can lead to headaches.
  • Intracerebral bleed: due to a rupture of a vessel in your brain.
  • Infection: of brain tissue can cause inflammatory reactions which can cause aches. Examples are meningitis.
  • Hypertension: headaches can be the only symptom in patients with high blood pressure.

What type of Headaches should I worry about?

  • You should keep in mind that a headache that just starts suddenly without any form of trauma or hitting your head somewhere is not a good sign, and should be checked immediately at the hospital for possible causes such as subarachnoid haemorrhage or hypertension.
    In the cases of headaches due to meningitis, the person would also have some other symptoms like rashes.
  • Headaches that start over hours to days are much less likely to be a cause of worry.
    It is important to know whether the headache is constant, or if it comes & goes (like that of migraine).
  • if there are any additional visual problems, nausea/vomiting fear of light or sound, weight loss, or fever may suggest more cancer or meningitis.
  • Headaches that have been present for months or years usually worry patients yet are rarely problematic, whereas new-onset headaches, especially in the elderly, are more of a concern.

What to do if I have a headache

Rest: Most times, a simple rest would be enough to resolve your headache, which could be due to stress.
See a doctor: a simple visit to the hospital & some investigation would help to ensure that the cause of the headache is identified & also know the best therapy if medication or surgery.
Drugs: These should only be prescribed by a doctor after other possible causes of dangerous headaches have been ruled out.
Never take drugs without a doctor’s prescription. It could lead to the development of liver diseases.

Surgery: this is only in the cases of growths or tumours in the brain.

Let us continue to create health awareness.

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