Now that I’ve discussed Types of Headaches, the focus of headache treatment and curing headaches is usually pain relief, such as with Tylenol, antiinflammatories (likr Ibuprofen and naproxyn variants such as motrin, advi, aleve, etc.), opiates (codeine-based products/narcotics) and sinus/allergy meds if this is a factor.
Migraine medications such as Imitrex, Zomig, Relpax and several others can be very helpful for these types of headaches. It’s best to take migraine meds as early as possible, such as the aura phase before the headache starts or when the headache first starts, They can still help if the headache is more established, but not as well. A combination of the above meds can be even more effective. Hormonal headaches can be difficult to treat, but may respond to the right combination.
I try to focus more, though, on prevention rather than just pain relief, in other words curing headaches rather than just bandaiding. The most common neurochemicals that imbalance that lead to headaches and other types of pain disorders are norepinephrine and GABA. The agents that balance norepinephrine are Pristiq, Effexor XR, and Cymbalta. The agent that balances GABA that I prescribe most for headaches is Topamax. A combination of both classes together may give even better results. For more details about these medications, please refer to earlier blogs or my book to explain this in more detail. A regular cardiovascular exercise program and well-balanced diet can be very helpful. Any stress reduction measures can help, such as meditation, massage, and relaxation exercises, such as slow deep breathing and other techniques. Psychotherapy if needed can also help to break a chronic pattern of stress. Combining prevention and symptomatic treatment of pain is my usual strategy for treating headaches and other pain syndromes.
Addiction can be a concern for those who are taking too many opiates, muscle relaxants, Fiorinal/Fioricet and other potentially addictive substances. Rebound headaches are common in these patients, with the headache coming right back after the pain pills wear off, which creates more dependency and thus more headaches. This can be a difficult cycle to break, and some severe cases may require short-term hospitalization to withdraw/ detox them from the pain pills. This can also be done out patient if this is not an option. For these patients in particular it is important to focus on treating the underlying mood imbalance, such as anxiety and depression, in order to break this vicious cycle of headaches and pain of other areas of the body.
My success rate for treating and even curing headaches is very high, so if you or someone you know suffers with this condition, make an appointment to discuss it with me. Bye for now.