Understanding the Different Types of Headaches

Headaches, one of the most common nervous system disorders and most complained about illnesses, affect almost half of the adult population worldwide, and are still underreported, under-recognized, and undertreated. Up to three-fourths of adults between 18-65 report headaches, and up to four percent of the world deals with headaches for more than 15 days per month.


Whether your headaches are acute or chronic, they can get bad enough to limit your ability to function and inhibit all kinds of social activity. Getting treated for headaches is best accomplished when you know what type you're dealing with, so let’s review headache symptoms and causes, the types of headaches you can suffer from, and the methods of prevention and treatments for each.


Residents of Dunedin, Largo, Riverview, and St. Petersburg, Florida, seeking relief from headaches can get help from Drs. Stephen StellerRyan GarciaJustin Murray, and their skilled medical team at Spinal Corrections Centers.


Headache symptoms and causes


Pain experienced from headaches results from numerous mechanisms affecting your brain, nerves, and blood vessels, resulting in either primary (dysfunction or pain overactivity issues in your brain) or secondary (pain stemming from underlying medical problems) headaches. 


Factors that cause primary headaches include problems sleeping, specific foods and drinks, poor posture, skipping meals, overexertion, or the strain from activities like coughing, sneezing, laughing, or blowing your nose. Secondary headaches can come from other conditions that affect your blood vessels, nerves, or brain, including dehydration, sinusitis, medication overuse, blood pressure issues, and head injury.


Types of headaches


There is a multitude of headache types that are either primary or secondary conditions, like:


Tension headaches


This condition, the most common type of primary headache, can cause pain in the front, back, and sides of the skull (sometimes all at once). The pain is often mild to moderate but can worsen if it becomes chronic.


Cluster headaches


This rare form of headache happens every day in brief but very painful episodes. The pain can get focused behind one of your eyes, causing tearing and redness. It can also cause a runny nose and eyelid drooping. 


Medication overuse headache (MOH)


Also called rebound headache, this is a common secondary form of illness mentioned above that results from long-term or excessive use of medications for treating headaches or other conditions.


New daily persistent headache (NDPH)


A rare, sudden onset, recurring condition that persists throughout the day, continues daily, and can last for months. The pain ranges from moderate to severe and can be either a primary or secondary headache.


Exercise headache


Physical fitness is important but overexerting yourself while staying fit can lead to this type of headache, which leads to throbbing pain on both sides of your head.


Hemicrania continua


A chronic, persistent type of head pain consisting of moderate intensity, one-sided pain, and additional short bursts of piercing pain that continues for three months without moving or stopping. 




Migraine is a primary disorder unique to other types of head pain. The intense pain and throbbing you experience with this condition is only part of one stage of attack, which includes prodrome, aura, attack, and postdrome. It is a chronic condition that can persist for months or even years.


Prevention and treatment


To manage the pain from headaches, we use various forms of manual therapies, such as spinal adjustments and massage therapy, to help with inflammation, injuries, or problems with blood circulation that can contribute to the various forms of headaches. 


If you’re dealing with a headache, we have options to help. Make an appointment with Drs. Steller, Garcia, and Murray at Spinal Correction Centers today to get relief.

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St. Petersburg, FL 33704

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11964 Boyette Rd,
Riverview, FL 3356

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Tuesday, Thursday
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