Q:Hello Dr, I’m having a headache almost twice in a week. What can I do or eat to prevent it? Please advice
A: I’m sorry to hear about your headaches. Hopefully, this post helps you out.
Headaches refer to pain or ache anywhere on the head. They may be primary, in which case they are due to problems with the structures sensitive to pain in the head. Or they may be secondary in which case the pain is due to an underlying disease that causes the pain-sensitive structures in the head to be activated.
Common causes of primary headaches include:
Tension headaches: This is the more common type of headache seen as the everyday sort of headache. It affects both sides of the head as a constant ache. Its causes are not very clear but they can be triggered by stress, hunger, dehydration, etc they can last a couple of minutes to several hours but are not severe enough to stop regular activities. Resting and sleeping well, eating properly and staying hydrated can help prevent this.
Migraines: These are felt as severe throbbing pain at the front or side of the head. Some people may experience other symptoms like nausea, vomiting and being sensitive to light. The pain lasts from a couple of hours or can stretch on for days. Thus, it is more severe than the tension headaches and can stop an individual from carrying out their daily tasks. Some find that they need strong medication prescribed by doctors to get relief but others are relieved by using over the counter medications.
Cluster headaches:These cause severe pain around one eye and are associated with red or watery eyes and a blocked nose or runny one. They tend to occur for one or two months at a time at about the same time of the year. Most times medications do not work for these headaches. Your doctor will prescribe specific treatment courses.
Chronic daily headaches may be due to medication overuse. This would occur in people who use pain medications too often and then end up with rebound headaches…the exact condition they were trying to avoid. Moral of the story: Never abuse your medications 😀 Use only as directed by your doctor.
Sex headaches: Yes, this can occur. For more on this condition, please click on this link: https://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/11/20/daily-health-tips-sexual-headaches/
Primary headaches may be triggered by stress, skipped meals and dehydration as noted above. However, they may also be associated with alcohol, foods that contain nitrates like spinach and bad posture.
Secondary headaches may be due to dental problems, hangovers 😀 ear infections, blood clot in the brain, wearing tight gear on the head like hats or even wigs (yes, I see you ladies :D) or even eating cold stuff like ice creams etc.
So, what should you do? If you find that tight head gear or eating ice cream is the problem, see if stopping helps.
If you find that these headaches are now more frequent than usual, more severe than usual, stops you from going about your daily activities, is no longer responding to the over the counter medications you used to take etc, please see your doctor. It could be nothing but it could very well be a serious issue. Better safe than sorry!
All the best!
Have a great weekend ahead, y’all 😀