Essay by didyaUniversity, Bachelor's March 2003

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This peer-reviewed journal discusses headaches. Most people are familiar with headaches, the all to common throbbing that causes pain. There are many different kinds of headaches, and they range from being an infrequent annoyance to a persistent, severe, and disabling medical condition. There are also many procedures that can be tried for the different types of headaches.

The brain itself is insensitive to pain, so that is not what hurts when you get a headache. It hurts in the tissues covering the brain, the attaching structures at the base of the brain, and the muscles and blood vessels around the scalp, face and neck. There are two types of headaches primary and secondary.

The most common are primary headaches. Tension- types account for 90% of all headaches. Neurovascular headaches are the second most common primary. They are caused by the interaction between blood vessel and nerve abnormalities.

(Migraines and cluster headaches fall under this category.)

Secondary headaches are cause by medical conditions such as sinus infections, neck injuries, and strokes. Nearly two percent of headaches are secondary. These kinds of headaches happen daily and are divided into two categories. Short duration, which last less than four hours and are most common and the long-duration which last longer than four hours.

Genetic factors appear to play a role in chronic tension headaches. One study of twins suggested that the chances of inheriting these headaches are about 70% in close relatives. It is equal both in boys and girls. However they occur more often in females due to hormonal, social, psychological etc. that they tend to stress more.

Chronic poor posture, chronic overwork, upper respiratory tract infections, sleep disorders, habitual snoring, dental problems, allergies, and substance or alcohol abuse are all specific risk...