Headache due to tension and stress

In the hurried lives that many people lead today, having frequent headaches is the rule rather than the exception. This headache can have various causes; and one of them is stress. Stress headaches fall under the so-called tension headaches, a type of headache that is influenced by stress. There is also a relationship between stress and the headaches that occur, but it is not the case that stress is the only cause; it is only the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back.

Triggers for stress headaches

Factors that trigger stress headaches include a lack of sleep and the inability to relax enough after work. Characteristic of this form of headache is that in many cases the headache only occurs after a day of work and/or in the evening.

Characteristics of stress headaches

As mentioned, a characteristic feature of stress headaches is that they often occur in the evening. The headache can last from a few minutes to a few days (!) and may cause sensitivity to light and sound. However, in most cases, daily life is not affected. The great danger of stress headaches is that the interval between the complaints often continues to decrease. In the beginning you will suffer from them one or more times a day, but if you do not take action to limit the triggering factors such as stress and a lack of sleep, stress headaches can even occur daily.

Treatment and prevention of stress headaches

If a stress headache occurs, you can use almost any over-the-counter pain reliever to relieve the pain. An example of this is the well-known aspirin, but ibuprofen and paracetamol also generally help. If you have a more severe form of stress headache, you may need a prescription medication, so you should consult your doctor first. Stress headaches are obviously not desirable and can actually only be prevented in one way: by avoiding the tensions that underlie the headache as much as possible. But of course you must first recognize them.

Chronic tension and headache

Everyone has a busy period in their life sometimes. The children, a busy, demanding job or other circumstances temporarily cause a lot of stress, and there is nothing wrong with that. Things are different if you suffer from tension headaches as a result of chronic tension, not temporary tension. In many cases, the headache relievers mentioned do not help or no longer help, and it then becomes important to tackle the causing tensions. This will not be easy, but it is necessary. Psychological or social assistance can help you get rid of chronic tension, or at least reduce it to a large extent.

Properties of tension headache

Tension headaches are caused by tense and cramped muscles and are experienced as a pressing band around the head or pain at the back of the head. Incorrect posture, overexertion, incorrect sleeping position and tension and stress can lead to tension headaches. To be able to deal with tension better or by learning good posture, the complaints associated with tension headaches can be reduced considerably. Physiotherapy, Mensendieck, Yoga and relaxation exercises can reduce and even prevent tension headaches.