- Step 1: Determine location Determine the location of the pain: the temples, eyes, forehead, muscles in the face and neck, and so on.
- Step 2: Rate intensity Rate the intensity of the pain on a scale of 1 to 10. Determine whether the pain comes and goes or if that level of pain is continual.
- TIP: Though the intensity may indicate a migraine, there could be other factors, like allergies or an infection.
- Step 3: Identify possible causes Recall recent traumas or colds, ear aches, and infections that may contribute to head pain.
- TIP: New medications may cause reactions involving severe pain. Food allergies can also create headaches.
- Step 4: Rule out things Rule out possible causes by asking how light in the eyes affects the pain and what sorts of things make it lessen or worsen. If the throbbing lasts for days, pulsates on one side, brings nausea, and is unaffected by over the counter drugs, a migraine is the likely culprit.
- Step 5: Evaluate when it comes on Evaluate factors like when pain occurs, such as when you wake up, right after eating, during stressful events, or while exercising.
- Step 6: Describe the pain Describe the pain as dull, sharp, pressured, disorienting, throbbing, or exploding. This information will be helpful to a doctor.
- TIP: Numbness, tingling, and weakness elsewhere might be related and could indicate something as severe as a stroke. Don't dismiss any signs.
- Step 7: Visit doctor Consult with a doctor, who will collect information about past operations or sicknesses and finally make a diagnosis. With proper identification and care, you'll be on your way to treating your pain and feeling like new again.
- FACT: According to one study, cigarettes may contribute to headaches, especially migraines.
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