Tension headache is a mild to moderate headache, which is common among adults.Excess of stress or tension is believed to be associated with tension headache. Tension headaches might occur occasionally, periodically or daily.
The headache usually lasts for about 30 minutes up to several days. Periodic or episodic tension headaches usually develop gradually. The pain usually intensifies in the middle of the day.
Symptoms of tension headache
The exact symptoms of tension headache vary from person to person. Often people suffering from tension headache experience a throbbing pain or tightness around the back of the head or forehead.
Causes of tension headache
Tension headaches might be triggers by one or multiple factors. The headache may develop due to inadequate rest, poor sleep, physical as well as emotional stress, depression, anxiety, hunger, fatigue, poor posture and strenuous physical activities. Researchers suspect that changes in brain chemicals might trigger tension headaches.
Studies have shown that women are more susceptible to tension headaches than men are. Although, tension headache can occur at any age, middle-aged people have a higher risk of tension headache.
Tension headache remedy
Over-the-counter painkillers could easily cure tension headaches. However, painkillers might lose their effectiveness if they are taken for a prolonged period. Moreover, prolonged intake of painkillers might increase the risk of gastric ulcers and acidity. Avoiding the triggers associated with tension headache might prevent episodic or chronic headaches.
Tension headache caused by emotional stress, depression or anxiety could be prevented by taking antidepressants. Anti-seizure and blood pressure medications are often prescribed for treating as well as preventing tension headaches. These medicines should be taken daily, even on the days when you do not experience headaches.
Tension headaches could be healed by applying heat compress or ice pack to sore muscles. A hot bath might reduce your headache. Headache could be reduced by massaging the neck, forehead and shoulder muscles. Acupuncture might help to cure chronic tension headache.
Poor posture, especially sitting at the same position for a long time might tighten the muscles of your neck, upper back and shoulder, triggering tension headache. To prevent tension headaches, relax your muscles with stretching exercises. Learn stress management techniques to get rid of episodic tension headaches.