What Are the Different Types of Headaches?


Quick Answer

There are 150 diagnostic headache categories, but the most common are tension headaches, migraines, mixed headache syndrome, cluster headaches and sinus headaches, states WebMD. Headaches can be hereditary, with migraines being the most common in terms of being passed down genetically.

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What Are the Different Types of Headaches?
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Full Answer

Headaches can be considered acute-onset, meaning an illness, cold or infection caused the headache, or they can be caused by trauma like a blow to the head, states WebMD. Tension headaches are the most common, affecting adults and children alike, that cause mild to moderate pain due to muscle contractions. Migraines cause mild to severe pain due to pounding or throbbing and the causes are unknown. They can be associated with other symptoms such as light sensitivity and nausea.

Mixed headache syndrome are a combination of migraines and tension headaches affecting adults and children, says WebMD. Cluster headaches are the most severe, creating a sharp, piercing pain behind the eye and can affect the sufferer one to three times a day; this period is called the cluster period and lasts up to three months. Sinus headaches cause pain deep in the cheekbones, forehead or bridge of the nose. Any sudden movement during a sinus headache exacerbates the pain more, and the headache is often associated with nasal discharge or a full feeling in the ears.

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