PAIN Problems and

Head Pain

What is Head Pain?

Headaches are pains in the head, which range from mild to severe and vary in their presentation and duration. Some common symptoms are pain, sensitivity to light, sound, smell, touch, nausea and vomiting, affected vision and numbness to the face.

Migraines are a type of chronic, localized headache, which progresses in stages. They are typically one sided, are often severe and exhibit symptoms such as pain behind one eye or ear, sensitivity to light, seeing spots, nausea and pain in the temple.

What Causes Head Pain?

Head pain can result from:

  • Avoiding triggers
  • Managing stress
  • Dietary modifications
  • Changes in sleeping habits
  • Using medication

What are symptoms of head pain ?

  • Dull, aching head pain
  • Sensation of tightness or pressure across your forehead or on the sides and back of your head
  • Tenderness on your scalp, neck and shoulder muscles


Head pain can be managed with regular exercise, techniques such as biofeedback training and relaxation therapy can help reduce stress.


Biofeedback Training

This technique teaches you to control certain body responses that help reduce pain. During a biofeedback session, you are connected to devices that monitor and give you feedback on body functions such as muscle tension, heart rate and blood pressure.

You then learn how to reduce muscle tension and slow your heart rate and breathing yourself.

Other Relaxation Techniques

Anything that helps you relax, including deep breathing, yoga, meditation and progressive muscle relaxation, may help your headaches. You can learn relaxation techniques in classes or at home using books or tapes.

Using medications in conjunction with stress management techniques may be more effective than is either treatment alone in reducing your tension headaches.

Additionally, living a healthy lifestyle may help prevent headaches

  • Get enough, but not too much, sleep
  • Do not smoke
  • Exercise regularly
  • Eat regular, balanced meals
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Limit alcohol, caffeine and sugar

When Should I Seek Professional Help?

  • Abrupt, severe headache
  • Headache with a fever, stiff neck, mental confusion, seizures, double vision, weakness, numbness or speaking difficulties
  • Headache after a head injury, especially if the headache gets worse.


The Migraine Trust

The migraine trust is a charity organization striving to achieve with charitable work for people who are suffering with migraine.

Migraine Research Foundation

SMRF provides an essential lifeline to the headache community by funding the best ideas at an early stage.

Self-Care Headache Forum Sheet (
SCF Fact Sheet No 6 Headache 13 Apr 13 v101.pdf (

Global Fact Sheets Against Headache
Fact Sheets – IASP (

Causes of Migraines

Migraine Signs, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

The Difference Between A Migraine and Headaches

10 Ways To Prevent Migraines

There Are Three Main Categories Of Pain:

Acute Pain

Lasts for a short time and occurs following surgery or trauma or other condition. It acts as a warning to the body to seek help. Although it usually improves as the body heals, in some cases, it may not.

Cancer Pain

Lasts beyond the time expected for healing following surgery, trauma or other condition. It can also exist without a clear reason at all. Although chronic pain can be a symptom of other disease, it can also be a disease in its own right, characterised by changes within the central nervous system.

Chronic Pain

Can occur in patients with early stage and advanced disease, and in cancer survivors as a severe and debilitating side-effect of treatment.

Understanding Pain
How does Brain Respond to Pain