Head Pain in Older People – Types, Triggers, and Treatments

Head Pain is Common As a senior, you know head pain is unfortunately common and can be caused by many things. When you have head pain it can be debilitating and keep you in bed all day or it can spread the pain to other parts of your body. Knowing what causes different types of […]

Head Pain is Common

As a senior, you know head pain is unfortunately common and can be caused by many things. When you have head pain it can be debilitating and keep you in bed all day or it can spread the pain to other parts of your body. Knowing what causes different types of head pain could assist you in preventing or minimizing the head pain to make your day more tolerable.

Types of Head Pain

While headaches may not be the only cause for head pain it does seem to be a major cause for seniors in Ireland. Around twelve to fifteen percent of people in Ireland are considered to be “migraineurs” and migraines are only one type of common headaches. Tension headaches can be considered the most common and the mildest which we tend to think of as a day to day headache.

Cluster headaches are another type of headache and while they aren’t the same as a migraine they can be just as debilitating. People who have frequent migraines are more likely to get cluster headaches, which can prolong a migraine and may intensify it. Other things that can cause head pain are poor posture, any type of hormone changes, significant lack of sleep, slight dehydration, needing to eat or missing meals completely.

Common Triggers

The causes for head pain can also be described as “triggers”. If you know what your triggers are, you could be well on your way to preventing another attack. Learning what your triggers are could take time and triggers can change, so don’t be surprised if you discover new ones throughout your life. Consider keeping a journal while you are trying to figure out what triggers affect you the most.

One of the first things you could do to find your triggers is to log each head pain episode with the date and time you noticed it as well as the duration, or how long it lasted. This may shed light on immediate triggers such as stress or hormone changes. A frustrating method of finding triggers is changing your diet. Many people find that different foods could be a major culprit in triggering head pain and avoiding those foods might reduce the amount of pain you have significantly or prevent it altogether.

Check with Your Doctor

Next time you go to your doctor consider bringing your head pain journal or log with you so they can assist you with triggers and preventative solutions such as prescription medication among other things they may think are best for you. Humans are all very different and unique so it may not be a major surprise that treatment could vary from person to person. Once you know what causes your head pain you can do things to soothe the pain at home.

How to Treat Head Pain at Home

Ice or cold therapy with ice packs is very common if your head pain is caused by migraines. You may want to have several ice packs on hand in your freezer for numbing head pain quickly to give almost immediate relief. Sleeping is another great way to reduce or alleviate migraine pain for many people. If you are dealing with a migraine you may have light and/or sound sensitivity, therefore sleep will likely be even more beneficial.

Looking into Chiropractic or Massage Therapy may be another great option and possibly provide longer lasting relief since pain can originate in your body and may spread to your head or start at your head and possibly spread throughout your body causing more potential health problems. Your primary care doctor may be able to refer you to one of these specialists or have other ideas to help you.

Relaxing is another great way to relieve head pain because when you are in pain you may notice that your body tenses up. Taking a warm soak in a bath of lavender or chamomile could help you relax significantly. Depending on the type of head pain you are suffering from, over the counter medications such as Excedrin or other mild pain reducers could greatly reduce your pain so you can have a more productive and enjoyable day.

Author Bio

Joe Fleming is the President at ViveHealth.com. Interested in all things related to living a healthy lifestyle, he enjoys sharing and expressing his passion through writing. Working to motivate others and defeat aging stereotypes, Joe uses his writing to help all people overcome the obstacles of life. Covering topics that range from management of health conditions, home-based treatments, general health, wellness, and aging all the way to social, news, and inspirational pieces…the goal is help others “rebel against age”.

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