A Debilitating Headache - Cluster Headaches


A part of everyone's life is formed by Headaches and is fairly uncommon for someone to go through his life and not have some type of a headache, it's almost inevitable. In this article, we will discuss the causes of and treatments for cluster headaches. Symptoms of cluster headaches are easy to identify but only if you know what to look for.

A part of everyone's life is formed by Headaches and is fairly uncommon for someone to go through his life and not have some type of a headache, it's almost inevitable.

Some of us may not be aware of all the different types of headaches, but what we do know is that headaches are not very pleasant. Pain is pain, no matter which way you look at it. That is why when we get headaches; we do not concern ourselves too much with which type of headache we have. Almost immediately, we seek treatment. We either reach for the Tylenol, Advil or some other form of pain reliever. When you get a headache, you just want it to go away. By knowing which type of headache you have, it will help you decide on the best type of treatment for it. Some of you may find popular brand name pain relievers ineffective. This isn't because one pain reliever is more effective than another; it is because there are different treatments for all the different types of headaches.

To begin we are going to discuss what a cluster headache is and how to get the correct treatment for it. Cluster headaches are unilateral, meaning they usually only effect one side of your head, near the temple or the eyes. Occasionally they will change sides, but they only affect one side at a time. These types of headaches are quite severe and can be debilitating. Debilitation with cluster headaches means that the pain is so severe that it saps the strength and energy out of you. It will stop you in your tracks! Cluster headaches can last anywhere from 15 minutes to 3 hours. The amount of pain is hard to measure, but those who have experienced other painful headache conditions such as migraines, say that cluster headaches are far more painful. The pain is easily comparable to being stabbed in the eye or temple, with a sharp object. Medical journals describe the pain as being the most severe pain suffered by humans.

The symptoms of cluster headaches are very evident. Often the person will become restless and will be unable to stay still. Pacing and being agitated is a very common symptom as well. Other symptoms may include sweating only on the side of the face that the cluster headache is affecting, red and watery eyes, drooping eyelids and a runny nose. Your neck will become stiff or tender when the 'attack' is over. Jaw and teeth pain will usually follow as well.

Cluster headaches are usually reoccurring and strike almost at the same time each day. It has earned a nickname for itself, "alarm clock headache". Not only because of the timing of the headaches but also because their ability to wake people from sleep. One of the strangest things about cluster headaches is that you may experience them during the same time each day for a year straight. Then you will not have another for several years.

There are several things that can trigger cluster headaches and it varies from person to person. For some people the consumption of alcohol can trigger them. Being exposed to perfumes or industrial smells, such as petroleum can also trigger them. Some people are even so sensitive that taking naps will trigger a cluster headache. Whatever the case, be sure that you can identify what triggers your headaches and let your doctor know about it.

Getting treatment for this type of headache will depend on the doctor you see. Some doctors will treat cluster headaches as medical emergencies while others will neglect the sufferer. Finding the right doctor to help you get the right treatment will be the most important factor in getting treatment as fast as possible. Over the counter pain medicines will have no effect on cluster headaches. It has even been said that morphine helps little to ease the pain. There are other medicines that you may want to look into, such as Fentanyl, that are stronger and actually will help with the pain. In order to get effectively treated for this type of headache, it will require the expertise of doctors. Find a good doctor that considers cluster headaches a medical emergency. You will get the appropriate treatment as soon as possible as per your needs.

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