What causes everyday headaches?


Quick Answer

According to Mayo Clinic, chronic daily headaches do not have a specific underlying cause, but they may occur in someone who has an underlying disease or condition, such as a brain tumor, brain inflammation or traumatic brain injury. Chronic headaches can also develop in someone with a heightened response to pain signals or a malfunction in the part of the brain that suppresses these signals.

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Full Answer

Mayo Clinic further explains that frequent headaches can also develop as a result of taking pain medications too often, as taking pain medicine for more than nine days each month increases a person's risk of developing recurring headaches. MedlinePlus notes that undertreating a primary headache can also cause chronic daily headaches, and any headache that occurs more than twice a week for several months is considered chronic.

According to MedlinePlus, other triggers of headaches may include drinking too much or withdrawing from caffeine, alcohol use, dental problems, fatigue, excessive smoking or a sinus infection. Headache pain can be dull or throbbing, and it can last for 30 minutes or up to seven days.

MedlinePlus suggests seeking medical help if a headache is accompanied by problems with speech, vision or movement, if a high fever develops or if the headache occurs with repeated vomiting. A doctor should also be contacted if the headache pattern changes, if treatments that were once helpful are no longer effective or if the pain medication causes side effects, such as nausea, sleepiness or depression.

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