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Garrett Katula, D.O.
Family Practice, Rush Copley Medical Group

Headaches are one of the most common complaints presented at a physician’s office. Headache pain is a signal from your body that something is wrong. Headaches may be an inherited sensitivity to pain in the muscles or blood vessels or headache pain may be a symptom of a more severe medical problem.

An attempt to treat headaches should begin with a medical screening by a physician. You should see a physician immediately if severe headache pain is new and rapidly changing or is accompanied by vision difficulties, challenges with operating arms or legs, vomiting, slurred speech or following head trauma.

Sometimes a trigger will bring on a headache. Common triggers include stress, eating and sleeping patterns, medications, environmental factors, hormones and physical exertion.

Most headaches are categorized as either tension or migraine headaches. Tension headaches most often involve a steady feeling of pressure or pain that centers in the front, back or entirely around the head. A tension headache also intensifies during the day and decreases at night.

Migraine headache sufferers are more likely to have a history of headaches in their family. Headaches that throb or pound and may be accompanied by stomach upset, sensitivity to light and sound and can leave a person feeling exhausted for hours or days. Migraine headaches may be proceeded by vision problems as well as numbness and tingling for several minutes at the beginning of a headache.

Treatment of headaches usually begins with a medical screening and keeping a headache history. By working with a physician, headache symptoms can be greatly improved.