Migraine, tension, cluster, sinus, and exertional headache: What's the difference?
Strikingly common and persistently annoying, headaches can be experienced in different parts of your head. From the forehead and at the temples to the sides of the neck and at the top of the head, each headache varies in terms of complexity, intensity, and frequency. Here are five of the most common headache conditions and how they differ from one another.
Migraine is a relatively intense headache condition because of its intensity and symptoms. It could last up to multiple days, and in worst cases with absolutely no sign of relief. Triggers like missing out on a meal or too much stress can lead to this common condition. People experience pain in the sides of their heads and rely on medication to heal.
Tension headache is more common than migraine and is often a result of emotional distress. It can also be caused due to tension in the neck and shoulders but doesn't last long. The pain ranges from mild to moderate and occurs in the back and sides of the neck. One may describe it as the feeling of wearing a tight band around the head.
It is called a cluster headache because of its tendency to occur several times in a course of weeks. The pain usually happens on one side of the head, generally around the eyes. It is so intense that it may even wake you in the middle of the night causing discomfort. Medication may help in subsiding symptoms and making the situation more bearable.
A sinus headache occurs when there is pressure in the sinuses of the head owing to severe congestion. This condition is more likely to happen due to allergies, season changes, and extremely cold weather conditions. Pain in the head, and also in the ears, cheeks, and eyes are the symptoms of this kind of headache. You may also experience a stuffy nose and fatigue.
When you're tired after toiling at work or indulging in heavy physical exercises, the headache you may feel is an exertional one. This headache stems from the pressure that one may experience due to intense exertion or fatigue. In addition to this, it may also occur when there's a sudden strain on the body. It generally goes away in a few minutes or hours.