What is this shooting pain in the back of my head?

Headaches are the most common problem that every person experience. It sometimes may be the common cause or the warning sign for other serious problem. It has always been a matter of doubt as of why headaches occur and what is their exact location. It may vary from time to time.

If you are experiencing the shooting pain at the back of your head, it might be the cause of the types of a headache whose symptoms, causes can vary. Though most of them are short-lived and are the least cause for concern. If it is diagnosed what kind of a headache a person is suffering from, it is better to cure him early. According to a report by The World Health Organisation, people will experience a headache from time to time. If you are unable to figure out what type of a headache you are suffering from, we bring a complete guide on different types of a headache that you can identify with.

1. Primary Headaches: It is not caused by another condition, it is the condition itself. It includes migraine, tension headache.

  • A Migraine: It is a result of some specific changes in the brain. They are severe, recurring as well as the most painful headaches. They are accompanied by sensitivity to light, sound or smell. It often starts in childhood and increases with age. Its attack may last up to 3 days.

Some symptoms may include:

  • Partial loss of vision
  • Numbness
  • Seeing zig-zagging lines, spots
  • Muscle weakness
  • Eye Pain
  • Nausea

A migraine is suspected to result from abnormal activity in the brain. This can hamper the way in which nerves communicate with each other.

Some triggers may include:

  • Hormonal Changes
  • Emotional Changes
  • Physical causes like tiredness, insufficient sleep
  • Medications
  • Triggers in the environment like strong smell, smoke, loud noise etc.

Treatment: There is no single cure for a migraine. However, it can be prevented by taking some necessary measures. The treatment is focussed on preventing the attack of a migraine and alleviating the symptoms that occur.

Some alterations that you can carry out in your lifestyle to reduce the attacks of migraine are:

  • Reducing Stress
  • Getting ample sleep
  • Regular exercise
  • Avoiding fatty food

Some medications are also prescribed by the doctors to prevent migraine attacks. It is important to take the pain relief medicine before the pain worsen. Some over-the-counter medicines include ibuprofen, naproxen etc.

  • Tension Headaches: These are the most common headaches that almost all people experience in daily life. It presents as a dull, constant pain that is felt on both the sides of the brain. They may last for 30 minutes but sometimes they could get worse and last for days also.

Its symptoms may include:

  • A feeling of pressure behind the eyes.
  • Sensitivity to light as well as sound
  • Tenderness of the face, head, neck, and shoulders.

Some potential triggers may include:

  • Dehydration
  • Loud Noise
  • Skipped Meals
  • Eye Strain
  • Poor Sleep

Some painkillers like ibuprofen, naproxen, aspirin etc can be very effective in reducing the pain. Some changes in lifestyle can be made to reduce the effects of tension headaches like:

  • Getting ample sleep
  • Eating healthily
  • Eye tests
  • Regular exercise and stretching
  • Cluster Headaches: They are severe and recurrent headaches that are six times more common in men as compared to women. In this kind of a headache, people complain about burning as well as piercing pain in the back of their eye. It can occur all of the sudden without warning. People can experience its attacks for 7-8 times a day.

Its symptoms may include:

  • Watering eye
  • Swollen Eyelids
  • Agitation
  • Sensitivity to light and sound

Alcohol may be the most active trigger for the development of this kind of a headache. Therefore, it is necessary to avoid alcohol for reducing the headache. Its treatment may include medicines like steroids, melatonin, lithium, oxygen therapy etc.

2. Secondary Headaches: A headache will be considered secondary when it is caused by other medical condition. It may occur from a head injury that happened in the past or sudden caffeine withdrawal.

  • Sinus Headaches:This type of a headache is caused by sinusitis, which is a swelling of the sinuses that results in an infection or allergy. Its symptoms may include a shooting pain around the forehead, eyes or cheeks. The pain can spread to other parts of the mouth like jaw or teeth. These type of headaches are quite rare but are similar to the pain of a migraine. In this case, it is necessary to take doctors opinion. In some case, the surgical treatment is required.
  • Head Injury Headache: This type of a headache usually occurs when a person undergoes some kind of head injury. If there are minor bumps or head blows, a person doesn’t worry about it much. A headache may develop later that could get worse. In that case, the patient must immediately run to the doctor. It can also be treated with over-the-counter medicines.

This is all about what kind of headaches may affect you. So, be aware of all the types. If you want to share some information, do tell us and we would be more than happy to share it with all.