Friday, September 22, 2023

How To Manage Stress Headaches

Stress Headache Relief Techniques That Work

Anxiety & Depression : How to Relieve a Stress Headache

Do you suffer from tension headache, commonly known as stress headache?

Wouldnt you want to know the stress headache relief techniques to ease you from the pain?

I do suffer sometimes from such tensions headaches, and am always on the lookout for better stress headache relief methods. Do you too?

Experts say that tension headaches are more common in middle-aged women!

Not only that, about 20% of the worlds population suffered from it at some time or the other, including men.

If youre concerned, then you must know the stress signs and its causes. Sometimes you experience stress at your workplace, else you have stress in the family.

This mental stress often translates into and extends to physical stress and pain in the body. A healthy lifestyle would definitely help reduce stress related headaches.

If you wish to change your lifestyle then you can read my posts on lifestyle besides my post about how to cope with stress in general.

But this post is particularly about headaches arising due to stress and other factors, and the ways to get rid of them.

You all can make your life easy if you know the best stress headache relief techniques and follow them.

Lets start quickly by first trying to understand all about stress headache, which is technically known as tension-type headache.

Every head has its own headache ~ Arab Proverb

Articles On Migraine & Headache Prevention

Everyone experiences stress. Our bodies are designed to feel stress and react to it. It keeps us alert and ready to avoid danger. But, when stress persists, the body begins to break down and illnesses, like headaches and migraines, can occur. The key to coping with stress is identifying stressors in your life, learning ways to reduce stress, and managing stress.

Simple Ways To Manage And Cure Headache

There are a number of ways to manage and cure a headache. Headache cure is not necessarily done through medicines but there are a number of natural ways to treat your headache. It is important to take action and cure your headaches because those who suffer from frequent headaches are well aware of this: The pain from headaches reduces our ability to concentrate, has a negative impact on our productivity, restricts our social activities, and sometimes affects our personal relationships! However, in essence the pain from headache is a warning from our body that there is a failure that must be confronted.

And when we say failure we do not necessarily mean a serious health problem, but small and annoying imbalances of our daily life. It is a fact that headache alone, without other symptoms, does not cause any serious organic diseases.

Headache can have a number of variations: primary secondary, migraine, tension headaches or chronic.

Headaches are considered chronic if they last for long periods. To make a diagnosis that a patient is suffering from chronic daily headache, the number of days during which shows headaches is equal to or greater than 15 days per month for more than 3 months. Approximately 3% to 5% of adults suffer from chronic daily headache. Women are affected more often than men.

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When To Call The Doctor

  • You are experiencing “the worst headache of your life.”
  • You have speech, vision, or movement problems or loss of balance, especially if you have not had these symptoms with a headache before.
  • A headache starts suddenly.

Schedule an appointment or call your provider if:

  • Your headache pattern or pain changes.
  • Treatments that once worked no longer help.
  • You have side effects from your medicine.
  • You are pregnant or could become pregnant. Some medicines should not be taken during pregnancy.
  • You need to take pain medicines more than 3 days a week.
  • Your headaches are more severe when lying down.

Lifestyle Changes To Consider

Stress Headache or Migraine: All About

In addition to all the natural treatments for tension headaches, you need to consider a few small, but very important, lifestyle changes. A healthy lifestyle will prevent pain and discomfort.

Here are some quick tips:

  • Get enough sleep. However, make sure its not too much. Too little or too much sleep is bad. The optimal amount is between 6 and 8 hours.
  • Do not smoke. However, if you do smoke, try to quit, or at least reduce it to one pack per week.
  • Consume regular, balanced meals.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day. The recommended amount is 8 ounces. Limit triggers like alcohol, caffeine, and sugar.

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Could Something In My House Be Giving Me A Headache

Migraine attacks and headaches can also be triggered by things in your environment, and so its possible that something in your house could be adding to your pain. Here are some possibilities to investigate:

  • Check the light. Migraine attacks are associated with photophobia, which is when bright light causes pain in the eyes or head. If youre experiencing photophobia, avoid fluorescent or flickering lights. Even bright natural light can be bothersome, so if youre sensitive to it, you may want to keep your window blinds at least partially closed during the brightest times of the day.
  • Eliminate strong odors. If you live in a building that infuses the air with a scent or have roommates or family members who use strong-smelling soaps, lotions, or perfumes, the odors could be causing your headaches. Certain cleaning products can also trigger a migraine attack, according to the American Headache Society. To avoid bothersome odors, purchase unscented personal care and household products whenever possible, and ask the members of your household to do the same.
  • Beware of dry air and dehydration. COVID-19 has most of us staying indoors more than usual. Indoor heating can dry out the air youre breathing and dehydrate you as well, and headache and dizziness can be symptoms of dehydration.

RELATED: Why Dehydration Is Still a Risk During the Wintertime

Get Your Priorities Straight

Think about your priorities, and write them down as two lists, marked Life and Now. What are the most important things on your list? What can you eliminate? Remember whats really important as you schedule your time and prioritize actions. Being always on the go, focused on tasks that dont make you happy is not the best option for leading a low-stress life.

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Are There Different Kinds Of Migraine

Yes, there are many forms of migraine. The two forms seen most often are migraine with aura and migraine without aura.

Migraine with aura . With a migraine with aura, a person might have these sensory symptoms 10 to 30 minutes before an attack:

  • Seeing flashing lights, zigzag lines, or blind spots
  • Numbness or tingling in the face or hands
  • Disturbed sense of smell, taste, or touch
  • Feeling mentally “fuzzy”

Only one in five people who get migraine experience an aura. Women have this form of migraine less often than men.

Migraine without aura . With this form of migraine, a person does not have an aura but has all the other features of an attack.

Potential Signs Of Stress

How to Relieve Stress Headaches INSTANTLY!

If you are often stressed, you may become so used to it that you dont even realize its a problem. When learning how to help manage stress, it helps to first recognize the potential physical symptoms. These may include:

  • Aches in your body

If you find yourself dealing with any of these stress symptoms, it may help to learn some effective stress management tips before they develop into lingering issues.

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What Causes Stress

Stress can be caused by anything that requires you to adjust to a change in your environment. Your body reacts to these changes with physical, mental, and emotional responses. We all have our own ways of coping with change, so the causes of stress can be different for each person.

Common causes of stress include:

  • Death of a loved one
  • Crowds

How To Handle Long

Sometimes dealing with stress isnât as simple as getting more exercise or making time to meditate. If the source of your stress is something outside of your control, like a health issue or a demanding job, lifestyle changes may not be enough to calm you down.

Instead, focus on something you can control: the way you react to a stressful situation. Negative self-talkâthoughts like âI canât do thisâ or âEverything is going wrongâmakes a difficult situation even worse. When you catch yourself thinking this way, try to reframe your thoughts more positively.

Instead of âI canât do this,â tell yourself, âThis is going to be hard, but I can handle it.â Like any habit, negative self-talk can be challenging to quit, but be patient with yourself and keep trying.

Similarly, make an effort to recognize when youâre holding yourself to an impossible standard. Perfectionism may seem like a commitment to doing things right, but expecting perfection from yourself only sets you up for failure. Remember that youâre only human, and be reasonable in what you ask of yourself .

This might seem like a lot to ask of yourself, but remember that you donât have to do it all on your own. Lean on your friends and family for supportâtheyâve probably noticed that youâre not feeling your best and could be looking for ways to help you. If thatâs not enough, a mental health professional can help you get to the root of your stress and build better coping habits.

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What Tests Are Used To Find Out If I Have Migraine

If you think you get migraine headaches, talk with your doctor. Before your appointment, write down:

  • How often you have headaches
  • Where the pain is
  • How long the headaches last
  • When the headaches happen, such as during your period
  • Other symptoms, such as nausea or blind spots
  • Any family history of migraine
  • All the medicines that you are taking for all your medical problems, even the over-the-counter medicines
  • All the medicines you have taken in the past that you can recall and, if possible, the doses you took and any side effects you had
  • Your doctor may also do an exam and ask more questions about your health history. This could include past head injury and sinus or dental problems. Your doctor may be able to diagnose migraine just from the information you provide.

    You may get a blood test or other tests, such as CT scan or MRI, if your doctor thinks that something else is causing your headaches. Work with your doctor to decide on the best tests for you.

    The Link Between Stress And Headaches

    How to Manage Tension Headaches at Home

    Chronic headaches can range from mild to debilitating and have a significant impact on how well you function in your day-to-day life. Identifying and avoiding your triggers is a key part of managing chronic migraines.

    Triggers differ from person to person, but certain lifestyle factors commonly trigger or worsen headaches — and stress is one of them. While theres no official classification for stress-induced headaches, people who experience chronic migraines often report stress as one of their triggers.

    At Beverly Hills Headache Institute, we have the training, expertise, and resources to diagnose and treat chronic migraines. Neurologist Ravinder Singh, MD, and our team of specialists here at Premier Neurology Group offer specialized care for a full range of neurological needs, including headaches, and we can help you improve your symptoms and quality of life.

    If youve noticed that your headaches tend to strike when youve been under a lot of stress, it isnt just your imagination. There is a link between stress and chronic headaches. Managing stress can help ease your symptoms and reduce the frequency and intensity of your headaches.

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    How To Seek Stress Headache Relief

    The action plan to seek relief from stress headache consists of

    Is this difficult to achieve?

    You may need to make efforts to change your lifestyle, but it will all be for your good. Most importantly, take care of your stress levels and body posture.

    Stress Levels

    Remember one thing when you try to lower your stress levels that if you cant change the stressful situation change your reaction towards it.

    This will help you maintain your composure. You also need to achieve mind-control so that you dont raise your stress and anxiety level, and eventually not have stress headache.

    Poor Posture

    A good posture puts minimal strain on your ligaments, muscles, tendons, and bones. So, they dont get tensed up.

    However, poor posture puts continual strain on your shoulders, neck, and upper back. This causes the muscle fibers to tear.

    As a result you feel tightness in those areas and the flow of blood to the back of your head is restricted, besides causing some nerve ending irritation too.

    Dont worry you do have an army of stress headache relief techniques that can really help you normalize the muscles, nerves, and achieve mental balance.

    Heres a short video that shows some exercises that you can do on your own to seek relief from stress headache, whenever you take a break from your work.

    Dr. Kevin McDougal ~ Get Rid of Computer Neck Headaches and Shoulder Pain ~ You Tube Video

    Ways To Manage Migraines And Prevent Frequent Attacks

    • 1 in 4 American homes has at least 1 person with a migraine.
    • 18% of American women, 6% of men, and 10% children experience migraine.
    • 90% of sufferers inherited it from a family member.

    Migraine has a special place in the headache lexicon simply for the hardship it puts the sufferer through. Attacks typically cause severe throbbing pain, usually in one side of the head, nausea, and sensitivity to light, sound, and touch. Sometimes, a migraine attack is preceded by visual and aural disturbances known as migraine aura. The frequency of a migraine attack varies from once a week to once a year.1

    While over-the-counter painkillers such as aspirin and paracetamol are advised in case of an attack to ease it, there is no definite cure for a migraine. In many cases, trying to sleep or lying in a dark place at the first sign of an attack helps alleviate the severity of the attack.2 Strange as it sounds, sex can relieve migraine headaches too.

    Common Triggers

    • Hormonal changes across the menstrual cycle
    • Stress
    • Air travel
    • Changes in the weather.3

    Prevention and management are the only ways to keep a migraine in check. So identifying the triggers is half the battle won, though it is a tricky business at times, if a potential trigger does not induce an attack that crosses the tolerance level or migraine threshold, it may not be identified as a trigger.

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    How Common Are Tension Headaches

    People dont always see their doctor for a tension headache, which makes exact numbers hard to predict. Researchers estimate that as many as 2 in 3 adults in the U.S. get tension headaches.

    Chronic tension headaches are much less common. They affect an estimated 3% of adults. Women get tension headaches more often than men.

    Prophylaxis Of Frequent Headaches

    How to Relieve a Stress Headache

    A wide variety of prophylactic agents have been researched in the management of chronic tension-type headache, and comprehensive reviews are available for interested readers.19

    Amitriptyline is the most researched of the prophylactic agents for chronic tension-type headache. It is typically used in doses of 10 to 75 mg, one to two hours before bedtime to minimize grogginess on awakening. Double-blind randomized controlled studies confirm its use in patients with chronic tension-type headache.20 Anticholinergic side effects and weight gain can limit its usefulness in some persons.

    Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors cause fewer side effects, and several of these agents have shown their efficacy in the prophylaxis of chronic tension-type headache in small studies.21,22 One small study23 showed that 20 mg of citalopram had no beneficial effect on tension-type headache, while another small trial24 noted that amitriptyline and fluoxetine were equally effective in reducing the number of days with headache pain each month. The beneficial effect of fluoxetine only manifested after two months of treatment and was slightly inferior to the effect of amitriptyline.24

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    Reduce Stress To Prevent Headaches

    • Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

    If you’re about to run a race or have a looming deadline, stress can help you perform at the top of your game.

    Chronic stress, however, puts wear and tear on your body. Increasingly, stress is linked to a number of medical conditions, including headaches and migraines. Once they get going, headaches can generate more stress, which makes the pain worse, and so on: a self-perpetuating cycle. This article examines the link between headaches and stress, and then offers tips to reduce stress headaches.

    Life-Saving Stress vs. Stressful Stress:

    Long ago, stress enabled humans to outrun tigers, bears, and other predators. The fight-or-flight response, when your whole body focuses on your survival, still has value. If your house is on fire, stress helps you act quickly and gets you out alive. Problems kick in, however, when the stresses of everyday life all start to feel like being trapped inside a burning building.

    “We are a heavily stressed society,” says Esther Sternberg, MD, director of the Integrative Neural Immune Program at the National Institute of Mental Health. “From wars and tragedies to trying to keep up with technology and now the economic crisis we live with almost constant change and uncertainty.” The stress of so much change adds up, playing havoc with nerves and muscles, and causing backaches, tension headaches, or migraines.

    Stress Is on the Rise:

    The Stress-Headache Connection:

    Tips to Manage Stress, Reduce Headaches:

    Take a break:

    What Otc And Prescription Medications Treat Pain And Manage Tension Headaches

    Many people treat tension headache on their own, using OTC medications like acetaminophen , ibuprofen , or combination medications containing acetaminophen, aspirin, and caffeine . While these medications can be effective and when taken as directed are safe for most people, overuse can lead to headaches which are more frequent and severe. This can occur if these agents are used more than 2 days each week routinely. If tension headache occurs during pregnancy, the patient should contact her physician about medications that are safe to use.

    • Products which contain aspirin should not be given to children due to the risk of Reye’s syndrome.
    • Chronic use of acetaminophen, or use of acetaminophen in large amounts may lead to liver toxicity , and a number of medications are combined with acetaminophen so patients should discuss all OTC drugs they are taking with their doctors.

    If a diagnosis of chronic tension headache is made or suspected, prescription medications may be used in an effort to lessen the frequency and decrease the severity of the headaches. Medications used include antidepressants and antiseizure drugs. A doctor can help determine which medicine is best for you.

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