Complex Injuries

Migraine and Tension Headaches, The Difference

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Headaches can be detrimental to a high quality of life.  Especially migraine and tension headaches. Some deal with them on a weekly or even daily basis. They can range from minor to life-changing afflictions. There are various causes, symptoms, and treatment options. The first step in treating headaches is understanding the type of headache it is. Some people think they have a migraine, but they are suffering from a tension headache. Tension headaches are more common. But the Migraine Research Foundation found that 1 in 4 U.S. households includes someone that suffers from migraines. Determining what type of headache can take some research. Here are some things to think about to determine if the headache is a migraine or a tension headache.

Headache/s origin

According to the Mayo Clinic, migraines often begin in adolescence or early adulthood. Tension headaches can start at any time in an individual’s life.  An adult just beginning to have recurring headaches means that they are most likely tension headaches.

Where is the pain located?

Migraines usually happen on one side of the head. Tension headaches can affect both sides of the head and produce intense pressure on the forehead. The location of the pain can be a key indicator of the type of headache.

Describe the pain

If it is a dull pain, with pressure and tenderness around the scalp, this could mean a tension headache. It could be a migraine if the pain is throbbing or pulsing pain. Both headaches can present intense pain, just different types of pain.

Other symptoms

Migraines often come with symptoms beyond head pain.

  • Nausea
  • Light sensitivity
  • Sound sensitivity
  • Seeing bright flashing/sparkling lights
  • A sensation of Pins and needles in one or both arms
  • Dizziness

Individuals not experiencing any of these symptoms are more than likely dealing with a tension headache.

Functionality

Those with tension headaches can still perform jobs, drive, read, and operate through daily life, even though it can be painful and frustrating. Migraines are very different. Many handle their migraines by lying down in a dark, quiet room with an eye mask on until the headache passes. If the headache disrupts your life, it is more than likely a migraine.

Over the counter pain killers

Tension headaches can usually be relieved with over-the-counter pain meds. However, this type of treatment does not work for migraines. When a migraine shifts into full force, the individual has to go through it. Headaches that respond well to nonprescription painkillers mean it’s a tension headache. The majority will, at some point, deal with a headache.

Although tension headaches are more common, that doesn’t rule out the possibility of the headache being a migraine. Just a little insight as to the type of headache that is presenting and some proactive treatments. No matter the type of headache, if the pain is severe, or starts up after a head injury, seek medical treatment.


Chiropractic Care For Migraines


 

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Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Migraine and Tension Headaches, The Difference" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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Our information scope is limited to Chiropractic, musculoskeletal, acupuncture, physical medicines, wellness, contributing etiological viscerosomatic disturbances within clinical presentations, associated somatovisceral reflex clinical dynamics, subluxation complexes, sensitive health issues, and/or functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions.

We provide and present clinical collaboration with specialists from various disciplines. Each specialist is governed by their professional scope of practice and their jurisdiction of licensure. We use functional health & wellness protocols to treat and support care for the injuries or disorders of the musculoskeletal system.

Our videos, posts, topics, subjects, and insights cover clinical matters, issues, and topics that relate to and directly or indirectly support our clinical scope of practice.*

Our office has reasonably attempted to provide supportive citations and has identified the relevant research studies supporting our posts. We provide copies of supporting research studies available to regulatory boards and the public upon request.

We understand that we cover matters that require an additional explanation of how it may assist in a particular care plan or treatment protocol; therefore, to further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez, DC, or contact us at 915-850-0900.

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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, RN*, CCST, IFMCP*, CIFM*, ATN*

email: coach@elpasofunctionalmedicine.com

Licensed as a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) in Texas & New Mexico*
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