National Migraine and Headache Awareness Month

Millions of Americans experience headaches and migraines each year, both of which can result in a wide variety of symptoms. For many people, however, it may not be easy to tell the difference between these two medical problems.

While both headaches and migraines commonly lead to pressure or pain in your head, headaches are only one potential symptom of migraines. A migraine can cause many other symptoms, such as:

  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Sensitivity to lights, sounds, and smells

There are two common types of migraine. A migraine with aura causes visual disturbances and other neurological symptoms that may precede a headache by up to an hour, as well as temporary vision loss, trouble speaking, confusion, loss of appetite, numbness, or muscle weakness on one side of the body. A migraine without aura causes a headache that affects one side of the head without warning, as well as confusion, blurred vision, and mood changes.

There are also multiple different types of headaches, all of which may lead to varying forms of head pressure or pain. Some of these include:

Sinus headaches: This type of headache causes pressure and pain in and around your sinus cavities, which are located around your eyebrows, cheek bones, and nose. Sinus headaches are often caused by the common cold, seasonal allergies, nasal polyps, a deviated septum, or any other factor that increases mucus buildup. Migraines are commonly mistaken for sinus headaches.

Tension headaches: A tension headache, often caused by factors such as eye strain, stress, or hunger, results in feelings of pressure that can affect one or both sides of your head.

Cluster headaches: This uncommon type of headache typically affects one side of the head and occurs in clusters, meaning that they may occur almost daily for a period of weeks or months and cause attacks lasting anywhere from 30 minutes to several hours. It is unknown what exactly causes cluster headaches.

If you commonly experience migraines or headaches, you can receive specialized treatment from a neurologist at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center. To schedule an appointment, please call (718) 206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.