A headache with pain confined to the temples is often a tension headache, states WebMD. The pain is usually a constant ache, rather than throbbing, and it is sometimes described as "vise-like." Additionally, tension headaches tend to recur, often during times of high stress.
Pain can radiate down the neck and into the shoulders, explains Health magazine. People suffering with a tension headache may also become sensitive to light and sound. Tension headaches may be triggered by poor sleep, hunger, poor posture, worry, eyestrain or stress. They are usually self-limiting and may be treated at home with an over-the-counter pain reliever such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
If over-the-counter pain relievers are taken daily for tension headaches for more than three days, rebound headaches can develop, cautions WebMD. Typically, a headache begins after the pain medication wears off, sparking the need for another dose. Eventually, a headache develops when a person stops taking pain relievers.
Lifestyle changes can help someone cope with tension headaches, according to WebMD. Keeping a headache diary can highlight triggers and help identify remedies. Setting routines for exercise, meal times and sleep ensures that those common triggers are addressed. Practicing good posture and reducing stress can also help reduce the frequency of tension headaches.