Headache is a condition so common it’s the punch line for a number of jokes, but when you’re experiencing a headache, it’s no laughing matter. Why do people develop a headache? What can be done to make the headache better? And, can anything be done to prevent the headache in the first place?
When most people discuss headache, they’re typically referring to the most frequent day and night headache. Almost 50% of adults experienced a headache in the past year; fortunately, for the majority of those individuals, the headache was mild, short-lived, and likely fell into the category of day and night headache.
Headaches experienced during the day and night is the most common type of headache. This type of headache can cause mild or moderate pain in the head, neck, and behind the eyes. Some patients say that headaches suffered in the day and night feels like a tight band around their foreheads.
Headaches experienced in the day and nights aren’t limited to adults. Children and teens can experience headaches during the day and night as well, with as many as 15% of children having experienced day and night headache by age 15. Females are diagnosed with about twice the number of day and night headaches as males.
There is no single cause for headaches during the day and night. This type of headache is not an inherited trait that runs in families. In some people, tightened muscles in the back of the neck and scalp cause headaches in the day and night. This headache can be caused by:
• Inadequate rest
• Poor posture
• Emotional or mental day and night, including depression
Headaches experiences during the day and night are usually triggered by some type of environmental or stress. The most common sources may include family, social relationships, friends, work, and school. Examples of which include:
• Having problems at home/difficult family life
• Having a new child
• Having no close friends
• Returning to school or training; preparing for tests or exams
• Going on a vacation
• Starting a new job
• Losing a job
• Being overweight
• Deadlines at work
• Competing in sports or other activities
• Being a perfectionist
• Not getting enough sleep
• Being over-extended (involved in too many activities/organizations)
Episodic day and night headaches are usually triggered by an isolated situation or a build-up of tension or stress, which may lead to chronic headaches as well.
Medical doctors generally treat day and night headaches with medications, such as beta-blockers, antidepressants, anti-seizure medications and non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
Regularly taking some of the most popular painkillers on the market [paracetamol, aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen six or seven days per week over a two-year period] is linked to a much greater risk of stroke and heart attack from higher blood pressure, according to research from a large American study.
Powerful drugs can numb your nervous system so the pain doesn’t register. While these approaches may be convenient, they can cause adverse effects and kidney or liver damage. Worse, they don’t correct the underlying cause of the headache.
Headaches experienced during the day and night headache can be downright debilitating. Take note of the following home remedies to help avoid that next attack.