You start to feel a thumping sensation in your temples. In just a few minutes, the pain starts to overtake your forehead with overwhelming pressure. You try to divert your mind back to work, but the pain keeps intercepting your attention. Your stomach starts to turn, and the fluorescent lights overhead become intolerable.
Does this situation sound all too familiar? You are among the majority of Americans who have experienced a headache in the last year. Most headaches can be cured by over-the-counter medications, eating, or a short period of rest. If your headache persists after taking these steps, you may want to seek professional help.
The Painless Center has helped patients living in New Jersey find headache relief, so they can live healthy and happy lives. Here are some signs to help you decide if you should seek professional help.
Over-the-counter medications don’t work
Jason Chiu, MD advises patients to see their health care provider if over-the-counter (OTC) medications don’t relieve the pain. Headaches are usually caused by a variety of factors, so seeing a professional can help address any potential triggers. Some common triggers include drinking alcohol, changes in sleep, consuming certain foods, and stress.
For those who don’t experience headache relief with OTC medications, Dr. Chiu may prescribe a drug from the triptan family. Triptans work to:
- Treat headaches and migraines
- Alleviate nausea
- Improve sensitivity to light and sound
Triptans don’t prevent headaches from happening, but do provide pain relief for most people within the first few hours.
They prevent you from doing normal activities
Eating, working, and sleeping are part of most people’s weekly routine. If you notice your head pain getting worse and preventing you from doing normal activities, you may benefit from seeing Dr. Chiu. He helps you manage your head pain in case it strikes so you can get on with your everyday life.
During your appointment, Dr. Chiu asks you about your headache history along with the location of the pain, any additional symptoms, and how often you get them. Since headaches differ from person-to-person, this is the most beneficial information in diagnosing your head pain. You can help prepare for your appointment by keeping a headache journal that makes note of the date, foods you ate, and any potential triggers to help Dr. Chiu better diagnose your situation.
You have three or more headaches a week
If you experience headaches three or more times a week, you may suffer from chronic migraines. Chronic migraines are diagnosed in some people who experience 15 headaches a month for three months in a row. Some signs of chronic migraine are:
- Throbbing, one-sided pain
- Moderate-to-severe pain
- Pain that gets worse from physical activity
No one should have to suffer headaches more times than not. Most who experience chronic migraines find them so debilitating that they can’t work. Your time and wellbeing are important, so it’s best to get help from Dr. Chiu as soon as possible.
They’re causing you distress
Headaches can put a halt to your day. They can prevent you from feeling well, accomplishing tasks, and having a social life. If left untreated, they may jeopardize your wellbeing and create distress. Long-term stress caused by your headaches could lead to more severe health problems like depression and cardiovascular disease.
Take control of your health today and put an end to your headaches. Schedule your appointment with Dr. Chiu by calling us or booking online.