Headaches and what to do about them.

Carol PlumridgeUseful information

Man holding head

Do you suffer from headaches? What do you do to help them? You are one of the 90% of the population that suffer headaches at sometime. You may have discovered that there is a six month wait for a hospital referral and there are only 50 specialist centres for the treatment of headaches in the country. Of all headache sufferers, about 11% have migraine, 42% suffer from tension-type headache, and 3% get chronic daily headache (a mixture of migraine and tension-type headache that affects one more than 15 days per month). According to one study, the number of workdays lost due to tension headaches was three times higher than days lost due to migraine.

Headaches can be a symptom of many disorders and people can suffer from more than one type of headache. It is really important to take a good history to determine whether the headache is of primary origin or secondary to something else (which can be medication overdose).

If you have had a thunderclap headache (severe pain within 5 minutes), or your first headache ever and you are over 50, if you have a headache, fever and a stiff neck or you are confused with or without memory loss seek medical help. Similarly if you have suffered a recent head trauma and a headache see your GP or go to A&E.

If however you have had headaches for over six months and they are not resolving physical therapy may help you. Treatment may help you manage your migraines, reduce your drug consumption and lower your pain.

Remember you can ask for a free 15 minute consultation to discuss whether treatment is the right option for you.