Summa PainCare-3-Types-Of-Headaches-That-You-Need-To-Have-Checked-June2021

There are some varieties of headache that you just learn to deal with and get through your day, but there are some headaches that can’t be taken lightly. Some headaches are warning signs from your body that need to be addressed quickly. Take a breath though because most of your garden variety headaches are nothing that some over the counter headache medicine and some bed rest can’t fix. But when it comes to these three headache types, if they are chronic or severe, you NEED to get them checked and Summa Pain Care is extremely well equipped to help you.

Cluster Headaches

Cluster headaches can be debilitating and even a bit frightening due to their physical manifestations on a patient. They strike fast, and usually with little to no warning at all. Symptoms include:

  • Horrendous pain typically emanating from within or around one eye, it may also spread to areas of the face and neck.
  • One eyelid may droop.
  • Patient’s become face may become pallid or flushed.
  • The pain is typically limited to one-side of the head, not both.
  • Patients exhibit restlessness with Cluster headaches as opposed to the more typical sedentary reaction with a headache.
  • Eyes tear excessively and exhibit redness.
  • Nasal congestion or runny nose can result, often causing mischaracterization as a sinus headache.
  • Swelling may develop around the affected eye or that side of the face.

According to The Mayo Clinic, “People with cluster headache, unlike those with migraine, are likely to pace or sit and rock back and forth. Some migraine-like symptoms — including sensitivity to light and sound — can occur with a cluster headache, though usually on one side.”

We know that Cluster headaches can be seasonal in nature and typically exhibit a “pain-free” remission period of up to a year before another cluster headache hits. In a “Cluster Period” Mayo Clinic reports: “Headaches usually occur every day, sometimes several times a day, a single attack can last from 15 minutes to three hours, the attacks often occur at the same time each day, most attacks occur at night, usually one to two hours after you go to bed”

Thunderclap Headache

With absolutely no exaggeration: Thunderclap headaches are just… TERRIFYING. According to WebMD and reviewed by Dr. Melinda Ratini, DO, MS,

“This rare type of severe headache comes on suddenly. It can cause intense pain and often nausea and vomiting. If you have one, get emergency medical attention. The cause, which can be life-threatening, is often some kind of bleeding in or around your brain.”

This type of headache is simply put: a hypochondriac’s worst nightmare made manifest. Most people who have experience one called it the worst headache of their life. Thunderclap headaches are terrifically sudden in onset and have zero ramp-up, its’ a 10 on the pain scale almost instantaneously. Its’ a complete and total blindside that will typically drop you, completely incapacitating you for about five minutes. It tends to be the only warning you get of a far more serious problem. The pain is described to grab your attention immediately “like a thunderclap” hence the name. You may feel pain over the entirety of your head, neck and back. Symptoms can include but definitely aren’t limited to: Vision issues, confusion, nausea, vomiting, weakness, fever and seizures.

As for the underlying cause?  Brace yourself: WebMD writes, “This rare type of severe headache comes on suddenly. It can cause intense pain and often nausea and vomiting. If you have one, get emergency medical attention. The cause, which can be life-threatening, is often some kind of bleeding in or around your brain.” And that’s just the most typical of a laundry list of other equally horrifying and some completely mundane potential causes.

IN short: If you have one of these headaches: GET. IT. CHECKED.


The sheer amount that has been written about Migraine headaches defies belief, there are literally hundreds of pages on any search engine dedicated to the painful headaches. Migraines are associated with light sensitivity, nausea, temperature sensitivity, pain on one side of your head, either on the left side, right side, front, or back, or in your temples, pulsing and throbbing head pain, and vomiting.

Migraine headaches are notable for their ‘prodrome’ which can begin up to two days before the “attack” stage of the headache. Which can include weird food cravings, feeling depressed, fatigued, lethargic or even the opposite: hyperactivity and irritability.

Then comes the ‘aura’ when the migraine is imminent which can manifests it, difficulty speaking clearly or coherently, a prickling or tingling sensation, visual manifestations like light flashes, shapes or bright spots or temporary visually impairment or loss of sight.

According to HealthLine,

“Doctors diagnose migraines by listening to your symptoms, taking a thorough medical and family history, and performing a physical exam to rule out other potential causes. Imaging scans, such as a CT scan or MRI, can rule out other causes, including:

If you’re experiencing migraines with regularity or have one with unusual severity you definitely need to get it checked out. Find your nearest location in Peoria, Phoenix or North Scottsdale today and don’t put this off any longer. Unaddressed chronic or severely acute headaches generally don’t improve. Call our Phoenix location at 623.580.4357 , you can reach Peoria at 623.776.8686 or contact us in North Scottsdale at 480.786.1771.

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