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Tension Headache

What is a Tension-Type Headache?

By far the most common type of headaches, tension-type headaches are often not severe enough to warrant neurological referral. Typically a dull pressure or band-like pain of mild to moderate intensity, these headaches seldom come with the other disabling symptoms found in more “serious” headaches such as migraines. Contrary to their name, they are not caused by stress or over-activity of “tight” muscles.

Most people with tension-type headaches are able to carry on with their daily activities despite their symptoms, treating them with non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) or acetaminophen. If they are frequent or severe, they are sometimes treated with some of the same preventative strategies and treatments used for migraines.


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