10.08.2013

Headache right temple ear pain

If you sit at the desk with your elbows on the arm rests for a while, this muscle will shorten and the headache will usually lessen.
It can also be aggravated with a motion that pulls the shoulder down like a dog pulling on a leash or carrying blocks to build a wall. This part of the trapezius resists stretching. Your shoulder seems tight when you lean away, as when you hold your phone on the other shoulder. There are some joint problems in your upper neck and shoulder that usually need to be addressed to get long-term relief. The upper trapezius is structurally very different from the rest of the trapezius and acts more like a 3rd head of sternocleidomastoid. Parts of this pattern of pain are similar to the patterns of semispinalis capitis, sternocleidomastoid and temporalis.
There is some work to loosen the top of your neck to that usually needs to be done to get lasting relief. There are a number of patterns that create pain and stiffness up the side of the neck as well including levator scapula, middle trapezius splenius cervicis and lower trapezius.
This entry was posted in For Clients, Headaches, Neck, Neuromuscular, Referral Patterns, Therapy Concepts, Trigger points and tagged clients, head, headache, neck, neuromuscular, pain, referral patterns, temple, trapezius, trigger points by Tony Preston. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. People come in and complain of pain in their temple(s) but touch the spot just above the temple.
This can be created by the same rocking, tilting and support from a hard surface as the headache all-over or in a band which focuses over the ear instead.
The trigger point is in the semispinalis capitis, which originates from the vertebrae of the upper back and lower neck and attaches to the back of the head, trapping the upper cervical vertebrae in between. This trigger point in semispinalis capitis is all about getting the joints right between occiput, atlas and axis.
Tony Preston has written and taught about anatomy, trigger points and cranial therapies since the mid-90s. This entry was posted in For Clients, Headaches, Neuromuscular, Referral Patterns, Trigger points and tagged capitis, clients, head, headache, neuromuscular, pain, referral patterns, semispinalis, trigger points by Tony Preston. Cluster headaches are actually pretty rare, but people who suffer from them know they are one of the worst headaches you can have. This type of headache may cause headache in left temple or right temple and may be caused by a neck issue. These are a short-term, one-sided type of neuralgia (nerve pain) headache most commonly experienced by men over the age of 50. This is a very serious form of headache due to the carotid artery to the brain rupturing or tearing.
Headaches inflict their misery in a variety of ways, from a dull, steady ache to a blinding, throbbing pain. This report offers in-depth information on the most common kinds of headaches and the treatment strategies that work best for each, including a number of self-help and alternative techniques, such as acupuncture, which has garnered more credibility as a way to avert recurring headaches. This report also explores a variety of preventive strategies, such as using stress management, physical therapy, or exercise in tandem with medications. Despite the fact that headaches are extremely common, doctors don’t fully understand exactly why or even how they occur.
About 95% of headaches aren’t caused by an underlying disease or structural abnormality.
Mild to moderate steady pain throughout the head, but commonly felt across the forehead or in the back of the head. Mild to moderate steady pain that typically occurs in the face, behind the eyes, at the bridge of the nose, or in the cheeks. Moderate to severe throbbing pain, often accompanied by nausea and sensitivity to light and sound. Some headaches share characteristics of both migraine and tension headaches and don’t neatly fit either category. For instance, the more intense a tension headache gets, the more it resembles the sharp, throbbing pain of a migraine headache. Always take children who have recurring headaches to the doctor, especially when the pain occurs at night or is present when the child wakes in the morning. To the relief of ice cream lovers, doctors don’t prescribe abstinence for headache prevention.
But what about headaches that are severe, occur often, or are unresponsive to nonprescription pain relievers? Although headaches are rarely harbingers of more ominous disease, it makes sense to see your doctor if you’re having headaches weekly, if your headaches interfere with your ability to function, or if they change in any particular way.
Your physician will try to determine the causes of your headaches and design a treatment plan.
The physical exam should include a blood pressure check and a careful look inside your eyes with an ophthalmoscope. That’s why an accurate, detailed description of your symptoms is invaluable to your physician.
Your physician will also want to know about other symptoms linked to your headaches, what’s helped relieve your pain in the past, which nonprescription and prescription medications you currently take, and whether other family members have problem headaches. Anyone over age 40 who’s bothered by headaches should also schedule an appointment with an ophthalmologist to check for glaucoma. Because common headaches have few, if any, measurable effects on the body, tests aren’t likely to turn up much in the way of helpful information. Considering how common headaches are and the long list of potential causes, remarkably few people need special testing.
Although magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) creates an image similar to that produced by a CT scan, the technique is quite different.
For an MRI scan, you must lie motionless inside a large tube located in the center of a room-sized machine.
A severe, constant headache may be one of the first signs of temporal arteritis, a condition caused by inflammation of the large temporal arteries located on either side of the head. Those afflicted describe it as a severe throbbing, burning sensation, most often at the temple on one side of the head.
Doctors don’t know what triggers the problem, but it involves a misguided immune response in which antibodies attack the blood vessel walls. In one study, 75 mg taken twice daily for migraine prevention cut migraine occurrence by an average of 48%.
Limited evidence suggests that 50 to 100 mg daily of feverfew extract can reduce the frequency of migraine headaches. A mineral found in legumes, whole grains, vegetables (especially broccoli, squash, and green leafy vegetables), seeds, and nuts (especially almonds); also available as a supplement.
People with cluster headache or migraine (especially menstrual migraine) tend to have low magnesium levels.
A vitamin found mainly in milk and other dairy products and whole and enriched grains and cereals; also available in supplement form. Very high daily doses (400 mg) of riboflavin reduced migraine frequency in one three-month study. A vitamin-like substance found in small amounts in all human cells, as well as in small amounts in a variety of foods. A popular culinary herb; extracts and oil from the stems, leaves, and flowers are also used to flavor toothpaste and many other products.
Rubbing small amounts of peppermint oil into the temples may help relieve the symptoms of tension headaches.
Keep the oil away from your eyes, and watch for allergic reactions; use caution if you have sensitive skin or asthma. When most people get a headache, they reach for whatever painkiller they happen to have in their medicine cabinet. Many headache formulas found in drugstores fall into one of the three categories below; others combine these substances and sometimes other drugs as well.
If you do find that certain foods or beverages bring on your headache, make it a priority to avoid these triggers. Even after you identify triggers, the amount of control you’ll have over your headaches will vary.
Some people find that simply drinking a caffeinated beverage can ease their migraine headache.
Mind-body techniques such as meditation, relaxation strategies, yoga, hypnosis, stress management, and biofeedback, among others, seek to harness the power of the mind to aid in health and pain relief. A 2003 review article concluded that certain mind-body techniques offer effective headache relief. A number of techniques can relax your muscles and ease tension, which should help reduce headache pain.
Biofeedback involves using a machine to monitor body functioning, as indicated by finger temperature or electrical activity in muscles. Although the term hypnosis comes from Hypnos, the name of the Greek god of sleep, hypnosis is not a form of sleep but a state of deep relaxation.
While sitting at a computer, position the computer screen at eye level or higher, because it’s easier on the neck to look up than to look down.
For overall health benefits, most experts recommend 30 minutes of moderate activity — such as brisk walking, yoga, gardening, or bike riding — every day or nearly every day.
You can’t eliminate stress from your life, but a few tried-and-true coping techniques may help prevent headaches or ease them once they begin.
Acupuncture has long been used to treat headaches, but until 2009 there hadn’t been strong evidence that this ancient Chinese practice had any clear benefit for headache pain. According to traditional Chinese beliefs, acupuncture works by affecting the flow of energy, called qi, through pathways that run through the body. As the authors of the migraine report concur, correct needle placement seems less relevant than most acupuncturists believe, which casts doubt on how the treatment actually works. By relaxing the tense muscles that commonly accompany tension and migraine headaches, certain types of physical therapy may provide relief. Scientists once associated headaches with particular personality types or underlying psychological problems, but research has largely discounted such notions. Although depression and headaches are frequent companions, the depression may not be evident.
In addition, psychotherapy can help you manage the effects that headaches have on your life, as well as the stresses and anxieties that may aggravate your pain. Tension headache is the most common type of headache, affecting most people at some point in their lives.
Unlike migraine headaches, tension headaches are not accompanied by other symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting, or blurred vision.
Tension headaches often produce steady pain across the forehead or in the back of the head. Experts believe that the pain of a tension headache is caused by tightness in the muscles of the scalp and the back of the neck.
Subjecting your head and neck muscles to any prolonged strain can cause them to stiffen, leading to tension headache.
If you wake up in the morning with a dull, deep headache (which may or not subside during the day), it may stem from a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.
Another common cause of TMJ disorder is tooth grinding and clenching, a condition known as bruxism that occurs in about one in 20 adults. Other symptoms of a TMJ disorder include a clicking or popping of the jaw joints, pain in or around the jaws, and locking or limited opening of your mouth. Muscle tightness isn’t exclusive to tension headaches, as it can also occur in people with migraine. A fast-acting but short-lived muscle relaxant such as carisoprodol (Soma, Vanadom) or metaxalone (Skelaxin) can loosen head and neck muscles (see Table 4). Unlike some muscle relaxants, carisoprodol and metaxalone generally don’t produce tolerance (the need for increasingly larger doses to obtain the same effect), but they may cause drowsiness and fatigue, which, in turn, can impair mental and physical functioning.
If you have frequent tension headaches (more often than once or twice a week), finding a helpful prevention strategy is vital, so you don’t become overly reliant on painkillers or muscle relaxants. Various types of physical and relaxation therapies prevent tension headache, although these techniques work only if you practice them on a regular basis, preferably every day. Some people with tension headache have very sensitive areas, known as trigger points, at the back of the neck or shoulders. The tricyclic antidepressants amitriptyline (Elavil, Endep) and doxepin (Adapin, Sinequan) have proven most effective for preventing tension headache.
A long-acting muscle relaxant, such as cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril) or tizanidine (Zanaflex), can also stave off tension headache.
Migraine pain has been called indescribable, yet 35 million Americans know it all too well. Unlike tension and sinus headaches, which produce a dull, steady pain, the pain of migraine headache is throbbing or sharp. Migraine aura often includes a blind spot or area in one side of the field of vision, known as a scotoma.
The altered cerebral blood flow and electrical activity occur first in the primary visual cortex, which may help explain why visual disturbances often accompany the aura. Twenty-eight million Americans — about one in five women and one in 20 men — have migraine. Weekend headache is often caused by caffeine withdrawal, which leads to the dilation of blood vessels.
Ice-pick headache takes its vivid name from its identifying characteristic: sudden, brief, and severe stabs of pain to the head.
Thunderclap headache strikes like a blow to the head, causing sudden, intense pain that peaks within 60 seconds. Post-traumatic headache develops after a head or neck injury, generally from relatively minor events that don’t cause a loss of consciousness. Estrogens have long been linked to headaches, but the reasons behind this association remain elusive. Most migraine headaches in women occur when estrogen levels are low and falling — usually right before (days 27 to 28 of the cycle) and during menstruation (days 0 to 4 or 5), but sometimes around the time of ovulation (day 14). Many factors that cause tension headache — such as stress, lack of sleep, or missing a meal — can also trigger migraine headaches. A food diary may help you discover whether something you eat or drink could be provoking your headaches. Most migraineurs have dozens of triggers, and it’s often impossible to avoid all of them. When migraine headache attacks are particularly severe, do not respond to treatment, or occur more than three or four times a month, it’s time to look into preventive strategies. Beta blockers (used to treat high blood pressure and angina) and tricyclic antidepressants can reduce the frequency of migraine headaches by 50% to 60%. People with heart failure, asthma, or other lung conditions should be closely monitored by a physician if they take these drugs.
Do not take these drugs if you have a history of glaucoma, heart disease, or an enlarged prostate, or if you are taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), or tranylcypromine (Parnate). People with heart failure or problems with the electrical pathways in the heart should not take these drugs. Although this drug is not specifically approved for migraine headache treatment, doctors sometimes prescribe it off-label. Doctors have prescribed these medications for years to treat high blood pressure, abnormal heart rhythms, and angina.
Six beta blockers have been found effective in preventing migraine headaches (see Table 5). Side effects can include fatigue, dizziness, cold hands and feet, exercise intolerance, insomnia, shortness of breath, depression, and impotence. These medications are sometimes prescribed to treat various types of pain, including headache.
When taking a tricyclic, you probably won’t notice any benefit in the first week or two, and you may not feel its full effects for several weeks. Like beta blockers, calcium-channel blockers are often prescribed for people with high blood pressure or heart disease, as well as for migraine prevention. Migraines are a chronic neurological disorder and they are a form of intermittent headaches.
Treatment: there is no cure for migraines, so prevention of the attacks and treating the symptoms that occur should be the primary focus. Tension headaches are headaches that cause discomfort and pain usually in one side of the head. Treatment: treatment of tension headaches requires immediate attention to the symptoms you incur and recognizing what triggers your headaches and finding a way to avoid those triggers. Treatment: as far as treatment of cluster headaches is concerned, there is no cure, but the ultimate goal of treatment is to try to reduce the severity of the pain that is experienced. Also known as tic douloureux, Trigeminal neuralgia is a chronic pain disorder feature with intermittent and shooting pain on the right side of the head. In temporal arthritis, the blood vessels that supply the head area suffer from inflammation and damage.
A common symptom of brain tumors is headaches, and they can often be localized in the right temple. There are several other disorders and conditions that also cause localized pain in the right temple. In some situations, the cause of pain in right temple or both temples can be from a serious condition, such as meningitis or a stroke.
If the temple pain is preventing you from working, sleeping or participating in your usual daily activities. If the temple pain worsens or does not approve, even when using over the counter medications. If the temple pain causes distress and you want to find a possible treatment option that can help you to control it.
If you manage this site and have a question about why the site is not available, please contact us directly. When I ask them to complain some more, they often describe the band of pain around the back of the ear and tension into the neck. Unfortunately, this part of trapezius will stretch as your shoulder drops when you get up from the desk and the headache will be worse as the trapezius supports the weight of the shoulder. It is unlikely that you would think of massaging just above the collar-bone to get rid of the headache. Fortunately, your neuromuscular therapist is trained to figure that out in assessment and help you with lasting relief.
This referral pattern is similar to the patterns of sternocleidomastoid, sub-occipitals and semispinalis capitis, temporalis and masseter.
If you don’t work atlas directly, this can be accomplished with sub-occipital routines or positional release techniques. This referral pattern is similar to the patterns of sternocleidomastoid, sub-occipitals and trapezius. A headache in left temple can indicate many different things, although you may be a little nervous to go to the doctor. You may have a headache in left temple or even the right temple area, tender skin, jaw pain and trouble chewing.
They give a sensation of tightness in the muscles of the head and neck and tend to “band” in an area of the head.
They tend to come in bursts that feel like burning, stabbing or throbbing near the temple area or the eyes.


The onset has “the worst headache” ever felt, a dropping eyelid and sometimes symptoms that are like a stroke. One of the commonly known disorders is TMJ and happens when the joint is not aligned properly. These are foods that are high in either sulfites, nitrites, or monosodium glutamate and the headache occurs as a reaction.
If you feel a headache that comes suddenly or is “the worst pain you have ever felt”, you should get to an emergency room or call 911 immediately. Nearly everyone has them at least occasionally, but an unfortunate few experience near-constant head pain. Another aspect of prevention is learning to recognize and change things that may trigger your headaches — for example, reducing emotional stress, changing your diet, or getting more sleep.
Neither the skull nor the brain is sensitive to pain, but both are surrounded by pain-sensitive membranes.
Instead, they spring from common conditions such as stress, fatigue, lack of sleep, hunger, changes in estrogen level, weather changes, or caffeine withdrawal. In children, migraine is slightly more common among males, but after puberty, it’s much more common in females. Likewise, when a migraine headache becomes more frequent, its pain begins to feel like that of a tension headache.
Experts still generally believe that tension headaches are stimulated by muscle tightness, while migraine headaches are caused by the dilation and inflammation of blood vessels.
Many non-life-threatening medical conditions, such as a head cold, the flu, or a sinus infection, can cause headache. It’s usually a very sharp, steady pain felt in the center of the forehead, but it may also occur on one side. One theory is that the pain originates in the back of the throat, which is chilled by the ice cream, but is felt in the head — a phenomenon known as referred pain. Instead, they suggest taking smaller bites and eating slowly, to give your mouth enough time to warm up the ice cream.
Although most people have a headache once in a while, others suffer from recurring headaches: about 50% of people experience headaches at least once a month, 15% at least once a week, and 5% every day. A CT scan and evaluation of spinal fluid (obtained via a spinal tap, in which fluid is drawn from the lower back region of the spine) can confirm or rule out this diagnosis.
Increased pressure in the head, which can be a sign of a brain tumor, can cause swelling of the optic nerve; the ophthalmoscope examination can reveal such swelling. A broad discussion about your life, focusing on stresses at home or work and the impact of your headaches, can also help your doctor reach the correct diagnosis and plan the best treatment.
People with a long history of headaches that haven’t changed much in intensity or frequency are less likely to need additional tests than people just starting to experience headaches or whose headaches have gotten worse. Rather than sending one wide x-ray beam through your body, this machine sends out many beams from many angles.
The test is painless and can help identify tumors, bleeding, areas of damaged brain tissue, and even sinus infections. Also known as cranial or giant-cell arteritis, this painful condition is twice as common in women than in men and usually occurs in people ages 50 or older.
Other symptoms, such as a low-grade fever, fatigue, loss of weight or appetite, or a tender scalp or temple may also occur.
This simple blood test determines the rate at which your red blood cells settle to the bottom of a test tube. Some — like avoiding triggers, trying herbal supplements (see Table 3), and using certain mind-body techniques such as yoga or meditation — you can do on your own.
The leaves can measure up to 3 feet in diameter and are thought to have been used to wrap butter. Some butterbur preparations contain chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs), which can damage the liver and cause other serious harm. The dried leaves (and sometimes flowers and stems) are used to make capsules, tablets, and extracts. Feverfew can enhance the effect of medications that cause bleeding, such as aspirin and warfarin.
For adults 30 and older, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is 420 mg for men and 320 mg for women. Taking too much medication, even over-the-counter painkillers, can actually make your headaches worse. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) include aspirin (see below), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen sodium (Aleve, Anaprox), and ketoprofen (Actron, Orudis, others).
Aspirin quells pain and may prevent migraine headaches in some people when taken regularly. For example, people with cluster headache usually find that they need to give up alcohol during periods when their headaches are active. Caffeine causes blood vessels to narrow, which counters the blood vessel expansion that contributes to migraine pain.
These techniques are quite popular with Americans suffering from headache: nearly one in five uses some type of mind-body technique to alleviate the pain, and 40% of those who do find it very helpful. Based on the evidence, the authors recommend that a combination of relaxation techniques and thermal biofeedback be used for migraine, while relaxation techniques and muscle biofeedback be used for tension headache. No single technique works better than the others, so it’s best to experiment until you find the approach that helps you the most. The machine then translates the readings into a blinking light, a beeping sound, or a graph. It’s not wise to pick someone out of the phone book or to acquire biofeedback equipment through magazine advertisements or mail-order catalogs.
During this trance-like state, the mind is particularly receptive to suggestions, which form the basis of this form of therapy. Frequent, brief breaks can help you avoid awkward positions that predispose your neck and shoulder muscles to tensing. Another tip to prevent tight neck and shoulder muscles: apply a heating pad for 15 to 20 minutes at the end of the day. It also boosts your mood, relieves stress, and helps prevent a host of ailments, such as diabetes and hypertension.
It’s important to note, though, that strenuous physical activity, such as running (especially in hot, humid weather), can provoke migraine headache in susceptible people. Then, two reviews from the Cochrane Collaboration (an international organization that provides comprehensive reviews of health care) concluded that acupuncture appears to prevent migraine as well as or possibly better than preventive medications (see Table 5) and may also help people with episodic or chronic tension headache.
The practitioner inserts very fine needles at specific points along these pathways, or meridians. As in the migraine studies, fake acupuncture seemed to work about as well as the real thing for curbing tension headaches.
Still, acupuncture appears to be among the most promising of nontraditional headache therapies.
Your physical therapist may teach you daily neck and shoulder exercises you can do on your own or use devices and techniques aimed at relaxing muscles.
For instance, although gentle massage can provide headache relief for some people, a too-firm or aggressive massage can actually bring on a severe headache.
A psychological evaluation can sometimes identify depression that’s obscured by pain or that produces subtle symptoms. Although most people have them only rarely, a small percentage suffer from tension headaches on a more regular basis.
In addition, researchers haven’t linked them to common migraine triggers, such as foods, genes, or hormonal changes. Maintaining good head posture and avoiding awkward neck positions can help avoid such problems.
These flexible joints, found on each side of the head just in front of the ear, connect the lower jaw (mandible) to the temporal bone of the skull.
People who grind their teeth during sleep usually rub their lower teeth against their upper teeth in a back-and-forth or side-to-side motion, creating a noise that sounds like chewing on hard crackers or ice cubes. As a general rule, if your headache responds to an over-the-counter (OTC) painkiller such as ibuprofen, it’s probably a tension headache and not a migraine. While these medications don’t relieve pain any more effectively than OTC analgesics, they do address the mechanism of the tension headache. They slow the functioning of your central nervous system, creating an overall calming effect.
Thus, avoid driving, operating heavy equipment, or performing other hazardous tasks while taking these medications.
Doctors often advise people with tension headaches not to skip meals, to get enough sleep, and to pace themselves to avoid becoming overly tired.
The simplest strategy is to apply a heating pad to your neck and shoulders to relax the muscles. Autogenic training is a technique in which you learn to focus your attention on various parts of your body, in succession, and then imagine them becoming warm and heavy in order to relax them. One study found that three out of four people taking daily amitriptyline reported significant improvement in their head pain. Like their fast-acting relatives (see Table 4), these drugs slow the central nervous system, indirectly relaxing tense muscles.
Unlike tension headache, migraine headaches can keep you from functioning or sleeping, and they can even rouse you from sound slumber. It usually occurs on one side of the head only, confined to the temple, eye, or back of the head. Actually, the term refers to a broader set of changes that may occur throughout the body, although not all of these symptoms are evident in every person who has migraine. These might include seeing sparkling or flashing zigzag lines (scintillations) or blank spots (scotomas) (see Figure 4). Although scotomas usually appear black, in migraine they are typically gray, or, in rare cases, colored. Instead, many experts now suspect that the migraine aura is produced by a neurological phenomenon known as spreading depression, which is a wave of decreased electrical activity (indicating lower brain cell functioning) and diminished blood flow that inexplicably washes across the cerebral cortex.
Symptoms affecting the extremities, such as numbness and tingling, may occur when the spreading depression reaches the primary sensorimotor cortex. Blood vessels tighten in response to stress and widen during relaxation, and dilated blood vessels in the head are a chief trigger for migraine pain. This type of headache often begins 12 to 24 hours after your last sip of coffee and is apt to develop on weekends, when you delay your first cup of the day or skip coffee entirely.
Ice-pick headache is so fleeting that it’s over long before any medication could take effect. Such injuries often cause daily headaches, but they may also share characteristics with migraine. The two disorders are nearly identical, but paroxysmal hemicrania attacks are shorter (lasting 10 to 30 minutes) and more frequent (five to 15 times a day). But after puberty, the situation shifts, with women more likely to experience migraine headaches.
Both the introduction and withdrawal of these hormones, either naturally (during a woman’s monthly cycle) or artificially (by starting or stopping estrogen-containing medications) can trigger headaches. For milder cases, try aspirin or another NSAID, such as ibuprofen, daily during the days before and the week of your period.
Experts don’t know for sure whether it first causes dilation or inflammation of blood vessels.
In addition to identifying and avoiding triggers, you may find it worthwhile to consider alternative strategies (especially acupuncture). Don’t take this drug if you have any liver problems, including elevated liver enzyme levels. Some beta blockers can worsen asthma or other chronic lung disorders by narrowing the airways inside the lungs. However, some sedative effects are common early in treatment, which is a bonus for the many people with migraine who also have difficulty sleeping. Migraines can be brought about by a variety of different causes, such as anxiety, hormone fluctuations, some odors, alcohol consumption and certain types of food. There are several at home remedies that you can do to lessen the pain or even completely relieve it, such as getting a good night sleep but don’t over sleep, keeping the room dark, not skipping meals, take riboflavin, use icepacks or cold compresses on your head or over the counter medications, such as Tylenol or ibuprofen.
These are usually associated with muscle tightness that may be present in the area of the headache. Some patients report that massaging the bottom of their necks, there temples and their scalp can provide some relief from the pain associated with these types of headaches. Cluster headaches are fairly rare, but they can be debilitating as they are accompanied by severe, excruciating pain to one side of the head, tearing in the eyes as well as runny nose. Unfortunately over the counter medications, such as Advil, Tylenol etc., do not help because they are not fast acting enough.
A blood vessel putting pressure on the nerve near the brain stem is the most frequent cause, and over time the nerve’s protective myelin sheath can wear away, which is responsible for causing symptoms to develop. If the medications are not effective, some neurological procedures are available to decrease nerve sensitivity or release pressure on the affected nerve. This particularly affects the large or medium arteries that branch from the neck and supply the temporal area.
Corticosteroids will likely be prescribed to you even before a biopsy confirms the diagnosis of this disorder. When these abnormalities are present they can cause frequent headaches that radiate to the temporal region of the head. In some cases, little or no treatment is required to eliminate jaw pain, whereas in the most severe cases surgery may be necessary to correct the problem.
Symptoms include pain that is more severe in the morning and slowly improves throughout the day, pain that is characterized as a deep ache progressively worsens over time and pain relief that occurs after vomiting. Some examples of these are aneurysms, sinus problems, including inflammation of the sinuses or sinus infections and stroke. In sever situations like this it is vital to seek medical care immediately, such as an emergency depart or by calling 911 for an ambulance to come to transport you. A lot has been written about getting charis with the right arm rest instead of dealing with the underlying problem so that the trapezius shortens and lengthens comfortably. A little ice or heat on the fleshy part of the shoulder just above the end of the collar bone help to release this trigger point. I’ll get a little click with a light headache and then wake with a dull headache in the morning.
Often, this created by bending the head back sharply like when you lay on your stomach and looking up at a TV.
It is important to understand that while it may just be a common headache, left temple pain is also very easy to over-medicate with pain relievers if it is chronic.
It may start in the eye or the ear and feel like a “band” is running through one side of the head.
Here are some helpful home treatments for general headaches:Keep the house quiet and the lights dim.
Yet no matter how mild or severe, the pain is rarely an omen of some terrible disease but instead a response to the realities of life: stress, fatigue, exposure to allergens, and lack of sleep. Advances in the medical management of headache mean that relief is no longer just possible, but probable. Most headache pain stems from abnormalities in these membranes or nearby muscles, blood vessels, or nerves — either alone or in combination.
Experts now believe that headaches fall along a continuum ordered by their characteristics: the occasional tension headache is at one end and the migraine headache is at the other. However, if you have migraine headaches frequently, you may develop muscle tightness, which can trigger more headaches, creating a vicious cycle.
Any cold food or drink can induce this type of headache, but ice cream is the main culprit because it’s very cold and is often swallowed quickly.
Many people suffer from a hybrid of tension or sinus and migraine headaches, which can cause confusion because there isn’t a definitive test for these types of headache. Pain that occurs consistently in the same location or on one side of the head — which could result from an underlying medical condition, such as a tumor or a blood vessel abnormality — may also warrant a more detailed evaluation. Tissues give off minute electromagnetic waves in frequencies that differ according to the type involved.
Some people feel claustrophobic inside the device, but many testing facilities provide earphones so you can listen to music to ease some of the anxiety. Consult your doctor before taking any of these supplements, as they can interact with medications to treat headaches or others conditions. This easy, effective strategy is fine for people who have mild to moderately painful headaches once in a while. But beware that doses above the recommended level, especially when combined with alcohol, can cause potentially fatal liver damage.
Long-term side effects include kidney damage and gastrointestinal problems, such as stomach pain, heartburn, or nausea. Few triggers are obvious, so a headache diary is a good tool to use when trying to figure this out. Wearing blue- or green- tinted sunglasses can help fend off an attack if your headaches are triggered by sunlight.
However, whatever you choose, the technique will work only if you do it on a regular basis, preferably daily. Simply walking across the room or shrugging your shoulders and bending your neck can get the kinks out. In addition, virtually any type of physical activity, if performed regularly, can help prevent headaches.
Aim to work 30 minutes of moderate activity, such as brisk walking, into your schedule on all or most days. If you’re finding it hard to fall or stay asleep, you may want to examine your waking hours. Although acupuncture has many variations, it typically involves four to 10 needles that are left in place for 10 to 30 minutes.
Both groups had fewer headaches than before the treatment, and the fake acupuncture was just as effective as the real version.
But two large studies of people who received acupuncture in addition to their usual headache treatment found that 47% said their headache days were cut by at least half, compared to just 16% of those in the control group, who received typical headache treatment alone.
The chief downsides are the cost and the time: an hour-long session can run from $65 to $120, depending on where you live. A heating pad applied daily, for example, can relax tense muscles in your neck and shoulders and help prevent headaches.
People who suffer from both depression and headaches may respond better to a combination of psychotherapy and medication than to medication alone, even if the headaches improve significantly with just the medication. A survey published in the journal Headache reported that stress was the most common factor precipitating tension headache. Clenching (which can happen during sleep or while you’re awake) is more like a rocking motion of the lower teeth against the uppers. For some people, a dental night guard — a small piece of hard plastic custom-fitted to your upper teeth — will help reduce the symptoms of bruxism. However, OTC painkillers and even stronger prescription pain relievers may not fully relieve tension headaches, and they may actually worsen the situation by turning an occasional problem into a chronic one. They work quickly, taking effect within 15 to 30 minutes, but the effects last only three to four hours. Muscle relaxants aren’t recommended for people with liver or kidney disease or a history of drug dependency. Another relaxation technique is biofeedback, in which you learn to recognize when your muscles are becoming tense and learn how to relax them, based on signals from your own body.


If your doctor identifies such trigger points during the physical examination and other treatments fail to provide relief, injecting a local anesthetic into these areas may eliminate the pain and prevent the headache from occurring again.
Because they cause drowsiness, tricyclic antidepressants are particularly useful for those who have both tension headache and insomnia. In most cases, this is thought to be an involuntary response to the pain, rather than its cause (although tight muscles can trigger a migraine headache). Less often, people will experience tingling on one side of the body, often in the hand, arm, and face. The scotoma typically appears as a shimmering zigzag in the shape of a crescent that moves across one side of a person’s field of vision. For many years, scientists believed that a tightening of the cerebral arteries interfered with blood flow. TIAs occur when a blood clot temporarily interrupts blood flow through one of the smaller arteries in the brain. On occasion, however, they can persist for days, especially in women who have these headaches before or during menstruation. You can easily identify this type of headache by comparing your weekend caffeine intake with your weekday consumption. This type of headache generally afflicts people who suffer from migraine or cluster headache. Because the experience may be virtually identical to a thunderclap headache, which is associated with bleeding inside the head, testing may be needed to confirm the diagnosis.
Women are more likely to experience migraine and other kinds of headaches around the time of menstruation and, to a lesser extent, ovulation (see Figure 6). Birth control pills may increase the frequency or intensity of attacks, which usually occur during the placebo week when the pills don’t contain any estrogen. The list is long, but foods known to cause migraine headaches include chocolate and aged cheeses, as well as additives like nitrates, found in most cured meats, and monosodium glutamate (MSG), an ingredient in some canned, processed, and Chinese foods (check the Nutrition Facts panel on food labels). But often, preventive therapy involves taking a course of medication daily, gradually tapering the dose, and, ideally, eventually discontinuing it altogether. Calcium-channel blockers, also used to treat high blood pressure and angina, don’t have the track record of the beta blockers, but they show promise. Other tricyclics used in migraine prevention include doxepin (Adapin, Sinequan), imipramine (Tofranil), and nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor). Although a tricyclic could potentially improve mood, the doses prescribed for headache prevention are much lower than those used in treating depression. Calcium-channel blockers relax muscle cells in blood vessel walls and prevent blood vessel spasm, which is what first prompted scientists to investigate their value for migraine prevention. There are several underlying conditions causing mild to severe pain in this section, which range from sinus issues to possible tumors.
Intolerance to bright light or loud noises, temporary disturbances in ones vision as well as nausea and vomiting are all among the symptoms that migraine sufferers can experience. If these remedies don’t help or if the migraines are disrupting your daily activities, you may want to consult a physician. Tension headaches can occur when the neck and scalp muscles become tense from excessive computer work, sewing or using a microscope. The condition tends to occur on a daily basis for a period of eight to ten weeks and then is followed by a period of remission that can last up to a year. The only treatment that is proven to reduce the duration of pain is administering high-flow oxygen.
Alternative therapies, like chiropractic adjustment, acupuncture, meditation or self-hypnosis are also known to work for some patients. It is unknown what causes this disorder, although it is believed to be due in part to an immune response that is faulty. People with TMJ can suffer from various other symptoms aside from the frequent headaches, including pain while chewing, neck pain, stiffness in their jaw muscles, difficulty opening the mouth completely and misaligned teeth in the upper and lower region.
There are pain medications, both over the counter and prescription that may help to alleviate some of the discomfort and some patients report that using ice packs or cold compresses are effective.
In some instances, you may need to have one or more of the treatments available, but this is determined on a case-by-case basis.
Clenching or grinding of one’s teeth can cause pain localized in the right temple as well.
After that, the acromoiclavicular joint seems to directly perpetuate the activity of this trigger point. It occurs most often with the headache at the back of your head. This one compares most closely to the headache in the temple but notice that it is higher and without the neck and eye tension. This can lead to other problems, such as stomach disorders, damage to the liver, decreased kidney function or an allergic reaction. Although some form of head pain will occasionally visit most people, no one should have to live and suffer with headaches. In between are chronic tension headache and chronic migraine, which are often lumped together as chronic daily headache.
This doesn’t allow for the treat to be warmed slightly in the mouth before it contacts the back of the throat.
A headache produced by stress or tight muscles can also resemble one caused by an underlying disease. But in most people who have tension or migraine headaches, the physical examination doesn’t turn up anything unusual — which is good. Because eyestrain from squinting can cause headaches, a thorough eye exam may also reveal that something as simple as getting new glasses might alleviate your pain. On the other hand, a headache that regularly shifts from one side to the other may not, since this suggests a less ominous cause such as stress or fatigue. In some cases, a contrast dye is administered intravenously to define the brain structures more clearly.
A computer tallies the vibrations and uses this information to create cross-sectional images on many different planes. But the only sure way to diagnose the condition is to remove part of the blood vessel and examine it under a microscope to look for changes in the artery wall. Even if these techniques don’t provide complete relief, they may enable you to cut back on pain medications. But if you need to take an OTC analgesic more than a couple of times a week, you’re suffering from regular, rather than occasional, headaches, and you should see your doctor. In addition, continual use of these remedies can cause your body’s pain-quenching system to become lazy. If you consume three or more alcoholic drinks a day, every day, don’t take acetaminophen.
Bleeding from the stomach can also occur, often in such minute quantities as to go unnoticed. Or if changes in eating and sleeping habits are likely to set off a headache, make an extra effort to stick to a regular schedule.
For example, many processed foods contain MSG, and it can be difficult to give up a favorite treat such as chocolate.
The therapist then instructs you to calm and clear your mind, which helps you become receptive to suggestions. Strategies such as exercising, avoiding caffeine in the afternoon, limiting fluids before bedtime, and not watching TV in bed can improve sleep. However, six trials found that getting regular acupuncture treatments in addition to typical migraine treatments (such as taking painkillers) cut the frequency of migraines.
They are common at any age, but women are more susceptible, as is true for headaches in general. Other frequent triggers included (in order of their prevalence) missed meals, lack of sleep, and fatigue. Whiplash or a heavy blow to the jaw can trigger this painful disorder, which leads to tenderness in the face, jaw joint area, neck, and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew, speak, or open your mouth wide.
Some people don’t realize they have bruxism unless a bed partner mentions it or a dentist points out worn-down areas on the teeth. That’s because both OTC and prescription pain relievers target only the symptom of tension headache (pain), without addressing the underlying cause (muscle contraction). Still, such medications typically outlast the usual tension headache, which rarely continues for more than a few hours. Your doctor may be able to provide examples of suitable exercises or a referral to a physical therapist. In biofeedback for tension headache, typically a therapist will attach electrodes to your skin to detect electrical signals from your neck and shoulder muscles.
Unlike carisoprodol or metaxalone, these drugs take an hour or so to work; however, their effects can last as long as a day. Bright lights and loud noises worsen the pain and may prompt someone with a migraine headache to seek out quiet, dimly lit places. These symptoms, known as prodromal symptoms or the prodrome, warn that a migraine headache is on the way. Such visual and sensory disturbances generally last anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes and are known as aura. The above drawing shows what a person experiencing this phenomenon might see while reading a book.
The arteries would then dilate to compensate, not only in the brain but also outside the brain, where the dilation causes inflammation.
The areas of lowered activity gradually spread, as if washing across the brain, causing the symptoms of aura (see Figure 5).
At that point, a parallel process, involving a combination of blood vessel dilation and inflammation, may be causing headache pain. Symptoms may include weakness on one side of the body or blindness in one eye or one side of the visual field. Thus, an evening or nighttime migraine usually occurs after a particularly intense day or a period of prolonged stress.
But others are a warning of a possibly life-threatening condition, such as a subarachnoid hemorrhage (bleeding around the brain). Scientists believe that paroxysmal hemicrania and cluster headache are distinct entities, despite their similarity, because they respond differently to medications.
The tendency for migraine runs in families, and these headaches seem to be connected with motion sickness, as many adult migraine sufferers recall bouts of carsickness as children.
Migraine headaches that occur in the days before menstruation tend to be particularly severe and incapacitating.
However, low-estrogen birth control pills may prevent menstrual migraine headaches in some women, especially when taken continuously.
Of course, if you can identify such a trigger, your prevention strategy is simple: avoid it.
Beta blockers may on occasion worsen heart failure, although they benefit most heart failure patients. It is not clear how the tricyclics work, but it is possible that they relieve pain by increasing the availability of the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine, which not only affect mood but also act to reduce the transmission of pain signals in the brain. Side effects can include dry mouth, blurred vision, dizziness, weight gain, constipation, and difficulty urinating. As it turns out, however, calcium-channel blockers prevent migraine not so much because they increase blood circulation, but because they act directly on nerve cells and thwart inflammation. A physician can perform an evaluation and decipher what the possible cause of this type of pain is and apply the proper treatment to relive or cure such pain. During a migraine the patient usually experiences severe pain that is localized to a certain region, which in most cases is the temporal region. Symptoms include difficulty sleeping and dull pain, like a vice on the head and worse on one side of the head in the temple area. It is important to note that these prescription medications will only allow the pain to subside for a short period of time and excessive use can be both dangerous and can also cause rebound headaches to occur. These symptoms can repeat one after another and can come and go all day long, lasting anywhere from days to years. In most cases it only takes a few days to start to feel better, but the medication is usually prescribed for a period of one to two years. The cause of TMJ is not always clear, but there are some reasons leading to TMJ: the cartilage of the joint is damaged by arthritis or by an injury of some sort, or there is erosion or movement present to the disk that makes it unaligned. It is, however, necessary to follow-up with a physician to correctly diagnose the exact cause of your pain. Constant pain in left temple needs to be evaluated to make sure it is not a symptom of something more severe and help you find a medication that will help. Migraines usually have a trigger, including hormonal changes, sulfites (wine) or high stress levels. As a result, women, who undergo hormonal fluctuations as part of their monthly menstrual cycle, are twice as likely as men to experience moderate and severe headaches and more likely to experience certain types of headaches, such as migraine.
In addition, certain medications — such as nitroglycerin, prescribed for a heart condition, and estrogen, prescribed for birth control or menopausal symptoms — are notorious causes of headache.
To exclude more serious causes, your doctor may perform additional tests, possibly including a computed tomography (CT) scan or a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan.
However, these scans expose you to far more radiation that a conventional x-ray and should be avoided when possible. These remarkably detailed pictures can show the difference between brain tissue and tumors and highlight areas of the brain that have been damaged by a stroke or other neurological conditions. However, check with your health insurance plan before trying any of these therapies, because some may not be covered.
However, over time anemia may result, causing fatigue — which, in turn, may increase the frequency of headaches. Two types of biofeedback are commonly used to manage headaches: surface electromyography, which measures electrical activity in a muscle via electrodes placed on the skin, and thermal biofeedback, which measures finger temperature.
These may include imagining that the painful area is being injected with a local anesthetic, for example. And four studies that compared acupuncture to a preventive drug found that people who received acupuncture improved more and had fewer side effects than those taking medications. A cold pack can constrict blood vessels and ease the pain of a headache already in progress, and it can be especially helpful for throbbing temples. The pain may envelop your entire head or be limited to the forehead or to the back or top of your head. Most people with bruxism don’t develop TMJ disorder, but frequent grinders can develop stiff neck muscles — a possible trigger for tension headache. Rely too much on pain relievers, and you may find that your tension headaches gradually increase in frequency. Other physical techniques to relieve tension headache include massage to relax muscles or traction to stretch them. To reduce the likelihood that side effects will disrupt your routine, you should take cyclobenzaprine or tizanidine only once daily, before bedtime. The presence or absence of aura determines whether an episode is a classic migraine (with aura) or common migraine (without aura).
Visual auras typically last about 20 minutes and are often but not always followed by headache and the other typical features of migraine (see Figure 7).
Although scientists still believe that this combination of blood vessel dilation and inflammation causes migraine headache, they no longer think that the tightening of cerebral arteries underlies the aura. Bolstering this theory is the fact that a resting brain is more susceptible to spreading depression than an active one, which may explain why migraine attacks often strike as people unwind after a stressful period. If you’ve suffered from migraine throughout your life, remember these similarities, because you may be able to avoid expensive and sometimes risky tests for TIAs. Because of this risk, you should seek emergency treatment if you experience symptoms of a thunderclap headache. At menopause, menstrual migraine headaches should improve as long as you don’t take hormone therapy — which may actually increase the frequency and intensity of the attacks. In such a case, you may be able to use your list of triggers to manage a headache, if not prevent it.
The two processes also seem interconnected, and their interaction may foster a migraine headache once it’s started. People with heart and lung conditions who are on beta blockers should be closely monitored by a physician. People with a history of glaucoma, heart disease, or an enlarged prostate should avoid these drugs. If intravenous dye is needed to enhance the image, it’s usually given halfway through the procedure.
Your doctor may even begin this therapy before taking the blood vessel biopsy, as a precautionary measure. These medications are ineffective for many people with severe headaches, but a prescription drug may provide relief, as described in the following chapters. You may find that triggers interact with one another in ways that may make them more manageable. Another technique is dissociation, in which you visualize the pain as something in your hand or outside your body.
Many people describe the sensation as a dull tightness or pressure that occurs in a bandlike pattern (see Figure 2). You learn to recognize when you are becoming tense and then find ways to relax the muscles before they tighten so much you develop a tension headache. If a woman knows she’s more vulnerable to migraine during menstruation, she may want to avoid alcohol during this time.
For instance, widening of a blood vessel causes inflammation, and inflammation causes a blood vessel to expand.
Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, ketoprofen, and naproxen sodium, often provide relief for occasional headaches, especially when combined with rest, some relaxation, and a bite to eat. Prednisone must be taken until all symptoms have disappeared and the results of further laboratory tests are normal. For instance, you may find that chocolate or alcohol provokes a headache only if you haven’t had enough rest or if you consume them on an empty stomach. Or you may transform your pain by imagining it as a color (bright burning red, for instance) that you then turn into a more soothing color. The intensity of the pain may fluctuate, but it won’t be intense enough to keep you from functioning or sleeping or to awaken you at night. Migraine headaches are also most common on weekends, perhaps because people are more likely to drink alcohol, sleep late, or experience caffeine withdrawal (some people drink less coffee on weekends or have their first cup later than usual). To further complicate matters, researchers believe that different triggers affect this relationship in different ways. If this approach doesn’t alleviate the pain, a number of prescription medications are available, and a handful of drug companies are testing new classes of medications as well as novel delivery systems to increase the efficiency of existing medications. On the other hand, you may also find that caffeine-containing beverages help quell migraine pain (see Figure 1). A handful of studies suggest that regularly practicing hypnosis — which you can also do on your own, using audio recordings to reach a trance-like state — can help reduce the frequency of migraine in both children and adults.
When migraine headaches are frequent, they can cause muscle tightness, which can, in turn, trigger more headaches. Some physicians believe continuing low-dose steroids for a year or two may prevent recurrences.



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