Headaches can be caused by many single or a combination of factors. Some causes are as simple as the need for glasses or an upgrade on an eyeglass prescription. A more serious cause, found in a very small percentage of cases, includes brain tumors.

The fact is that headaches are classified into many groups or types. Some of the more recognizable headaches include the Migraine, Cluster, Caffeine Rebound, and the Tension headache. The determination of the exact type of headache depends on many components. These include headache location, amount and type of pain, the duration of the pain, how often they occur, the presence of triggers, and many more.

Triggers are certain things that may initiate a migraine attack when you come in contact with them. Triggers can be foods such as chocolate, coffee, alcohol or can be noxious odors, loud sounds, bright lights, preservatives, or changes in sleeping habits, just to name a few.

The fact is, one of the most common form of headaches can be caused by “STRESS” and is known as a TENSION headache. This is typified by a throbbing pain felt from the neck to the top of the head or just above both eyes. Pushing on the back of your head or rubbing your temples may help while you do it, but the relief is short lived. This type of headache usually responds well to rest, relaxation, and some type of pain reliever.

Sometimes the pain from these types of headaches can be excruciating and debilitating. Some classify these really bad headaches as MIGRAINES. Although not technically correct, the general public understands the meaning implied by the term.


A true migraine, however, must have other signs and symptoms associated with it in order to be classified as such. To be classified as a migraine you must have two of the following:

•Pain that is more severe on one side of your head

•Throbbing or pounding pain

•Pain that disrupts normal activity

•Pain aggravated by activity


Additionally, you have to have one of the following symptoms:

•Feeling sick to your stomach, or feeling like vomiting.

•You are bothered by lights or sound


What characterizes a migraine, and differentiates it from other types of headaches are the specific symptom complexes listed above. Not all migraine sufferers experience the same symptoms complex.

Complicating matters further is that different combinations of symptoms can occur at different times.

The bottom line is that a headache is a WARNING. Your body is a wonderful communicator and is saying loud and clear that something is wrong. You can choose to ignore the warning and live with the pain or you can do something to help find the cause of the problem.

Taking a pain reliever does nothing to solve the cause and is really a poor bandaide. Additionally, some of the common drugs used to treat severe headaches are associated with many side effects. An incomplete list includes dizziness, anxiety, weakness, muscle pain, pressure in the chest, and nausea. These are not good things but sufferers are more than willing to take chances in order to reduce the amount of pain they experience on a regular basis.

The good news is that there are many natural options for the treatment of headaches. Through massage, myofascial release, hot packs, Anodyne Tharapy®, chiropractic adjustments, allergy testing, and nutritional counseling, most headaches can be cured. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me: Dr. Jayme Nill @ Family Chiropractic & Wellness Center, 260-459-2205; 4656 W. Jefferson Blvd. Fort Wayne, IN 46804, or E-Mail:

drnill@nillfamilychiropractic.com. This article was written and re-printed with permission from Dr. Ed Zimmer at Zimmer Family Chiropractic.