I felt like my eyes were literally going to pulsate out of my skull. The soft glow from the streetlight outside my window was almost nonexistent, but to me, it seemed as if some sadist was shining a spotlight directly into my retinas. And the noise! “Who keeps pounding on my window with a hammer?” I wondered… until I realized that sound was just the gentle sprinkle of a spring rain shower. If you have ever experienced the misery of moderate to severe headache pain, then you can understand what I'm talking about. The problem is that the human brain is basically a complete mystery to us; we just don't know very much. The good news? Recently, the scientific community has made a lot of progress in figuring out how our brains work. Perhaps now that we know more about migraine headache causes, we can begin to work on developing headache cures.
Migraine Headache Causes
Almost 30 million Americans suffer from migraines. Migraines are known as vascular headaches; they are believed to be caused by a dilation of the blood vessels in your brain. Recent research has found that migraines are closely linked to low levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin. In fact, many patients have experienced migraine relief from taking supplements to increase your body's serotonin production.
If you have a migraine, you feel a throbbing pain, often on one side of the head. Many patients also experience dizziness, nausea, and intense sensitivity to noise and light. Common triggers for migraine headaches include:
*Strong emotions, like excitement or depression
*Television and bright lights
But migraines aren't the only kind of headaches so here are three other main headache causes.
Tension Headache Causes
More than 85% of headaches are tension headaches. They are caused by the contraction of the muscles in your scalp and neck. This muscle tightening decreases the blood flow to your brain, and it irritates the nerve endings in the walls of your blood vessels. You will feel a steady, constant pain on both sides of your head. The pain may last only a few hours – or it may last for months.
Common triggers for tension headaches include:
Headache Caused by Medications
Many headache sufferers take painkillers to treat their pain, but these medications can actually become the cause of headaches when they are taken on a daily basis. Such “analgesic rebound headaches” can be caused by prescription and over-the-counter medications.
Headache Caused by Underlying Medical Illnesses
Headaches are sometimes symptoms of other illnesses, including arthritis, fever, infections, and tumors. If you are experiencing severe headache pain on a regular basis, you should see your physician. Headache causes vary greatly, but they can be indicators of dangerous medical ailments.