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Why You Shouldn't "Grin and Bear" Frequent Headaches

Why You Shouldn't "Grin and Bear" Frequent Headaches

While headaches are never fun, almost everyone gets one at some point. Whether it’s from lack of sleep, drinking alcohol, not eating enough, or even from over-exerting yourself, these infrequent headaches are rarely cause for concern.

But if you’re getting frequent headaches — on 15 days or more a month over a period of three months or longer — you’re experiencing what’s called chronic daily headaches. These headaches come in different forms, but they’re never normal and usually indicate something needs attention. 

The providers at Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours in Layton, Utah, can assess your headaches and examine you for signs of other conditions, neurological issues, and infection. To get to the bottom of your head pain and determine the best treatment, your provider may order an imaging study (e.g., CT scan) or other tests.    

Please call our office to schedule an appointment if you’re experiencing frequent headaches. In the meantime, take a moment to learn what might be causing your head pain. 

Understanding headaches

At the most basic level, headaches are pain in your head that may feel like aching, throbbing, or stabbing sensations. A headache might also cause a feeling of pressure inside your head.  

Sometimes a headache is only a mild nuisance, causing minor discomfort or only lasting minutes. Other times, a headache might be so severe that you’re sidelined for hours — even days. 

Headaches don’t always show up in the same location. You might have pain in your temples, forehead, or the back of your neck or head. 

People experience different types of headaches for different reasons. Most generally, headaches can be described as primary or secondary. Here’s a closer look:

Primary headaches

Primary headaches, which affect about 3 billion people every year,  get their name because they aren’t a sign of an underlying health issue. They are the primary issue. 

This doesn’t mean the pain from primary headaches can’t be intense — it can. However, primary headaches are rarely dangerous to your health.

You can get primary headaches for many reasons. Some of the most common include:

You can also get a primary headache after laughing or crying. 

Secondary headaches

Secondary headaches are symptoms of another health issue. This means another condition causes pain in your head and neck. They are more rare than primary headaches but also more serious as they can be a warning sign of a serious health condition, including:

You can also develop secondary headaches from a joint disorder like TMJ, eye problems like uncorrected vision issues, and hormonal imbalances. Because some of these underlying conditions can be life-threatening, don’t wait to schedule an appointment with a provider for frequent headaches.

Migraines

Some people get migraines. These can be either primary or secondary headaches. 

These headaches usually only impact one side of your head, though some people have pain on both sides. While the severity of migraine headaches varies among people — and from one migraine to the next — it’s most normally described as intense, severe, or throbbing. 

Migraine headaches can last for a few hours or several days. Be sure to talk to your provider at Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours if you’re experiencing migraine headaches or other chronic headaches to understand why you’re experiencing them.  

Treating frequent headaches

Even if your headache isn’t caused by an underlying health condition, chronic headaches can still disrupt your life and keep you from doing the things you enjoy. Since it’s challenging to know the underlying cause of your headache, it’s important to see a provider experienced in diagnosing and treating headaches. 

At Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours, our providers address the underlying causes of your headaches. Once we’ve determined what’s making your head hurt, your provider creates a personalized treatment plan to help stop your pain.   

Because each headache and each patient are different, the treatments for frequent headaches vary. Our team knows preventing headaches is usually the best medicine, so we’ll help you manage any underlying health issues contributing to your pain and take steps to make lifestyle adjustments to avoid issues in the future.   

If you’re experiencing frequent headaches, schedule an appointment online or over the phone at Wasatch Peak Family Practice & Oceans Contours as soon as possible to get to the bottom of your pain.

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