About Tension Headaches
Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. Stress and muscle spasms are often contributors to these headaches. Tension headaches typically don't cause nausea, vomiting, or sensitivity to light as do migraine headaches. Instead, most patients report a deep constant ache or tightness in their neck, forehead or temples that occurs on both sides of their head. The exact mechanism that causes a tension headache is unknown but several factors, such as genetics, diet, lifestyle and your environment, are thought to be involved.
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Symptoms of Tension Headaches
These are common symptoms of a tension headache:
- Slow onset of the headache
- Headache is usually on both sides of your head
- Pain is described as a dull, deep, band or tightness around your head
- Pain may radiate to the back part of your neck or bilateral shoulders
- Pain can vary intensity from mild to moderate, and in some cases become severe
Treatments for Tension Headaches
At Ospina Medical, we personalize our approach to treating tension headaches. Our specialists take into account your symptoms, lifestyle, and medical history to come up with a multimodal treatment regimen. The type of treatment we recommend will vary from patient to patient, but we prefer a conservative, minimally invasive approach without using narcotics to control tension headaches. Treatments may include trigger point injections, facet joint injections, biofeedback, physical therapy and/or lifestyle modifications to help reduce your pain. If you suffer from chronic tension headaches, you may even be a candidate for Regenexx regenerative medicine treatments. We utilize platelet-rich plasma, platelet lysate, and if needed, bone marrow concentrate containing stem cells to help heal damaged tissue.
If you have experienced ongoing tension headaches and are interested to learn more about Regenexx, please book a consultation with our experienced providers today. Our physicians will actively listen to your concerns and work with you to find a treatment option to improve your symptoms. Contact Ospina Medical in Midtown Manhattan to schedule your appointment today!
Tension Headache FAQ
What is the difference between a tension headache and a migraine?
A tension headache is more common and typically feels like a band of pressure around the head or a slow, steady ache with pain that ranges from mild to moderate. A migraine is typically less frequent, with pain described as a severe, debilitating throbbing that can be accompanied by light and sound sensitivity, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, and lines or dots in the vision.
How many people suffer tension headaches?
Almost everyone gets a headache now and again. Studies have recorded that as many as 75% of U.S. adults regularly get tension headaches.
How do you get rid of a tension headache?
If you suffer from chronic tension headaches, a consultation at Ospina Medical is a great long-term treatment solution. But if you’re at home or work, here are a few things you can do to treat a tension headache:
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever (always speak with your doctor)
- Apply heat or ice to your head and neck
- Massage the temples, neck, jaw, brow, back of the head, and eyes
- Take a hot bath or shower
- Take a short power nap (15 – 30 minutes)
- Practice stress management
- Exercise regularly
- Drink plenty of water
- Limit caffeine and alcohol
- Limit screen time
- Check your vision prescription
Do injection treatments for tension headaches hurt?
No, most patients don’t experience any more discomfort than with any other type of shot. If you want, before we begin, we can numb the treatment area with an anesthetic to keep you more comfortable. During your consultation, we will talk to you about treatment options and any concerns you may have.