Sunday, October 2, 2022

What Does A Sinus Migraine Feel Like

What Does A Covid

How to Tell if You Have a Sinus Headache

Heather Mercer is native to Northwest Ohio and graduated from Loma Linda University with two doctorate degrees . She is currently a professor at Owens Community College, as well as a fact-checker for Verywell Health. She has gained experience in a variety of settings, ranging from corporate wellness and preventive medicine, to mental health, chronic disease, and end-of-life care.

  • A headache associated with COVID-19 can feel like a tension headache or a migraine.
  • Some patients can also experience persistent daily headaches after recovering from an acute COVID-19 infection.
  • Lifestyle changes and certain medications may treat a COVID headache to an extent.

Headaches are one of the most common symptoms of COVID-19. But are they different from other types of headaches?

COVID headaches could manifest differently among individuals, according to Igor Koralnik, MD, chief of neuroinfectious diseases and global neurology at Northwestern Medicine. Headaches can be similar to a constant tension headache or a throbbing pain like a migraine attack.

About 70% of the patients at the Neuro COVID-19 Clinic at Northwestern Memorial Hospital experience headaches associated with the coronavirus, Koralnik added.

This is most likely multifactorial as many patients with are already suffering from fatigue and non-restorative sleep, both of which can trigger migraine headaches, she said.

Why Do We Misdiagnose Migraine As Sinus Headache

Research studies show common sinus symptoms occur with migraine. In one study, 45% of migraine patients had at least one symptom of either nasal congestion or watery eyes. Migraine is also underdiagnosed and undertreated, meaning that a self-diagnosis of migraine is less likely.

A study involving almost 3,000 patients was important in evaluating the frequent complaint of sinus headache. In this study, the participants had at least six sinus headaches in the six months prior to entrance into the study. They had neither a migraine diagnosis nor treatment with a migraine-specific medication. What were the results? Eighty-eight percent of the participants had migraine and not sinus headaches.

Another study, called the American Migraine Study II, showed that many people who were diagnosed with migraine thought they had sinus headache. Significantly, there were almost 30,000 study participantsonly about 50% who were diagnosed with migraine knew they had migraine before the study. The most common misdiagnosis was sinus headache.

Causes Of Sinus Headaches

When you suffer from sinusitis, the sinus cavities those empty spaces under your eyes, by your nose and beneath your forehead become inflamed. The inflammation, whether its caused by bacteria, an allergen, a virus or fungus, makes it difficult for the sinuses to drain. Mucus builds up in them and puts pressures on your sinuses. The result is often described as a throbbing, dull pain in the cheeks, forehead or nose.

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What Does A Sinus Infection Headache Feel Like

Headaches tend to come in different forms. They also get triggered by varying health conditions, including sinus infections. As a result, finding an effective way to relieve the pain tends to be tricky for some. To know if remedies like chiropractic atlas adjustment can help you, we suggest trying to get to know a bit more about your symptoms and the reason behind them.

For example, how do you know if your headaches stem from a sinus infection or a completely different health condition? What are tell-tale signs you need to observe? Lets take a closer look at how sinus infection headaches feel like and how they compare to other causes of headaches.

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  • How Do You Get Rid Of A Sinus Headache

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    No doubt if you have a sinus headache you want to know how to relieve a sinus headache. Fortunately, many sinus infections will go away within seven to 10 days by themselves, just through the use of home remedies.

    There are several things you can do from your home that might relieve your sinus headaches, including:

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    Symptoms: Identifying A Sinus Headache

    Keep in mind that other kinds of headaches can feel similar to a sinus headache. But there are other symptoms associated with the headache that can indicate whether it is happening because of sinus issues.

    For example, notice if there are specific triggers that bring on the sinus headache. When you are experiencing these headaches simultaneously with a head cold or seasonal allergies, its a good indication that the sinuses are the underlying cause.

    Symptoms vary for each patient. But the most common symptoms of a sinus headache include a headache accompanied by one or more of these symptoms:

    • Headache pain increases when leaning down
    • Swelling and redness in the nose, cheeks, or forehead

    Can Sinus Pressure Cause Migraines

    Sinus headaches and migraines are often commonly confused, but its important to know which type of headache you have since that affects the type of treatment you need.

    In this blog, Dr. Cecil Yeung of Houston Sinus Surgery at the Yeung Institute explains more about sinus headaches and migraines, including whether sinus pressure can cause migraines.

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    Sinus Headache Or Tmj Migraine: How To Tell The Difference

    Weve all had bad headaches from time to time. The pain can be so intense that you cant seem to imagine anything worse.

    And then you have a migraine episode that seems to take the pain to the next level. In addition to the pounding headache, your cheeks and teeth seem to ache, too.

    Unfortunately, some people have headaches like this on a regular basis. Theyve tried to treat it with over-the-counter remedies, but these can just be Band-Aid solutions.

    The reason for this is because painkillers arent treating the main source of the problem which could be structural or mechanical.

    The above symptoms the pounding head, achy teeth, and tender cheeks arent signs of a typical headache. They could be signs of a sinus headache or a TMJ migraine.

    In order to successfully treat the problem, we have to identify the root cause. First we need to discern the difference between these types of head pain.

    What Is A Migraine Attack

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    Migraine is a common primary headache disorder . In essence they are the result of a neurological malfunction that is thought to originate in the brain stem. Medical scientists and researchers still arent exactly sure what causes a migraine attack.

    Leading theories relate to hyperexcitability within certain areas of the brain or a disorder from the brain stem which triggers the migraine attack.

    The brain stem is a small but extremely important part of the brain. It allows the nerve connections of the motor and sensory system to pass from the brain to the body. This controls bodily sensations and movement.

    At the start of an attack, chemical changes are thought to develop in the brainstem which triggers a series of reactions causing the brain to respond abnormally to otherwise normal signals. The result from this hypersensitive response could be migraine.

    Interestingly, at least 50% of people who experience migraine still have not been diagnosed.

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    When To See A Doctor

    Make an appointment when your headaches:

    • Are coming more often and are more severe
    • Don’t get better with over-the-counter medications
    • Keep you from working, sleeping, or doing your normal activities
    • Cause other problems

    It’s likely that your doctor will talk to you about your health, both now and in the past, and run some tests to rule out other possible causes of your head pain before coming up with a treatment plan.

    A severe headache may be a symptom of a serious condition such as a stroke, meningitis, or encephalitis. Seek emergency care if you:

    • Are confused or have trouble understanding speech
    • Have a fever over 102 F
    • Are numb, weak, or paralyzed on one side of your body

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    What Can I Do About Recurring Sinus Headaches

    Many sinus headaches, especially those that recur, are actually migraines. But its smart to see your healthcare provider to figure out the cause of your headaches.

    You may find that the best long-term solution is figuring out what triggers your migraine headaches so you can avoid them. Its helpful to keep a headache diary to track potential triggers. Triggers you can control include:

    • Specific foods, such as chocolate, red wine or strong cheese.

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    What Are Sinus Headaches

    Real sinus headaches are almost always from a sinus infection. Sinus infections are common with 10% to 30% of the population experiencing at least one sinus infection each year.

    Sinus infections are also known as sinusitis or rhinosinusitis. This occurs when the sinus becomes inflamed. Common symptoms include thick nasal mucous, blocked nose and facial pain. Sinus infections may be caused by an infection, allergy or air pollution. Most cases are due to viral infection. Infections are often transmitted through coughing, sneezing, kissing, contact with contaminated surfaces, food or water or contact with infected animals or pets.

    To understand how sinus headaches are confused with migraine its important to know what migraine is.

    Types Of Sinus Infections: Chronic Vs Acute

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    There are four types of sinus infections. These classifications depend on the length and frequency of the infection:

    • Acute sinusitis.This type of sinus infection lasts only for a short time, defined by the American Academy of Otolaryngology as less than 4 weeks. This short-term infection is usually part of a cold or other respiratory illness. It may also be caused by a bacterial infection .
    • Subacute sinusitis. A subacute sinus infection lasts between 4 and 12 weeks .
    • Recurrent acute sinusitis. An acute sinus infection is considered recurrent if the infection returns four or more times within a year, with each infection lasting 7 days or more.
    • Chronic sinusitis.Chronic sinus infections last for more than 12 weeks or continue to recur.

    Many sinus infection symptoms are common in both acute and chronic forms. Seeing a doctor is the best way to learn if you have an infection, find the cause, and get treatment.

    For cases of acute bacterial sinus infections, these symptoms last at least 10 days without improving, or they worsen within 10 days after seeming to improve. In this case, its important to talk with a doctor, such as a general practitioner or an ear, nose, and throat doctor , to get a diagnosis and treatment plan.

    Learn more about the symptoms of a sinus infection below.

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    What Are The Symptoms Of Migraine

    The exact cause of migraine isnt known. Its believed that changes in levels of chemicals that are produced by the brain, such as serotonin, may affect how the nervous system regulates pain. Genetic and environmental factors may also play a role in causing migraine.

    The symptoms of a migraine attack can include:

    • pain thats moderate to severe, often characterized as throbbing or pulsing
    • pain that typically impacts one side of your head, but can also affect both sides
    • sensitivity to lights and sounds
    • nausea and vomiting
    • pain that gets worse with physical activity

    Additionally, migraine can also impact the area of your sinuses. When this happens, you may feel pain in your face or around your eyes.

    An found that 45.8 percent of people with migraine had symptoms that impacted their nose and eyes, such as:

    According to research, many people who have pain in the sinus region are actually experiencing migraine or another type of headache. Sinus headache is the most common incorrect diagnosis given to someone who really has migraine.

    An found that 88 percent of participants with a history of sinus headache actually met the clinical criteria for migraine.

    So, how do you know if youre experiencing sinus pain or migraine?

    When trying to tell the two conditions apart, there are a couple of important things to consider, including symptoms and timing.

    What Is A Sinus Headache

    A sinus headache occurs when your sinus passages behind your nose, cheeks, eyes and forehead become congested. You can feel it on either side of your head or both at the same time. You’ll not only experience pressure or pain in your head, but also anywhere in your sinus area. In some cases, a sinus headache is a symptom of the ongoing sinus condition called sinusitis.

    A sinus headache can occur seasonally if you experience allergies, or only once in a while when something triggers your sinuses for some other reason.

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    Check If You Have Sinusitis

    Sinusitis is common after a cold or flu.

    Symptoms of sinusitis include:

    • pain, swelling and tenderness around your cheeks, eyes or forehead
    • a reduced sense of smell
    • green or yellow mucus from your nose
    • a sinus headache

    Signs of sinusitis in young children may also include irritability, difficulty feeding, and breathing through their mouth.

    The sinuses are small, empty spaces behind your cheekbones and forehead that connect to the inside of the nose.

    Sinusitis causes the lining of the sinuses to swell up.

    This stops mucus draining into your nose and throat properly, making you feel blocked up.

    Ways To Treat A Sinus Headache

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    • Apply a warm compress to painful areas of the face.
    • Use a decongestant to reduce sinus swelling and allow mucus to drain.
    • Try a saline nasal spray or drops to thin mucus.
    • Use a vaporizer or inhale steam from a pan of boiled water. Warm, moist air may help relieve sinus congestion.

    Our AFC Urgent Care Farragut center is here for you now and always! Dont hesitate to reach out with any non-emergency questions or concerns.

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    How Do I Know If My Headache Is Migraine Or Sinus Headache

    So, how do you know if your headache is migraine and not sinus? Go beyond the nasal and sinus congestion and the facial pain and pressure look for a headache associated with the inability to function normally at work, school, home or social functions, nausea, sensitivity to light and triggers such as weather change, menstrual cycle, and stress . Significantly, it is commonly thought that weather change often causes sinus headache when weather change is a common trigger for migraine.

    You can also ask yourself the following questions from the ID Migraine Questionnaire developed by Dr. Richard Lipton of Albert Einstein College of Medicine:

    • In the past three months, how disabling are your headaches? Do they interfere with your ability to function?
    • Do you ever feel nausea when you have a headache?
    • Do you become sensitive to light while you have a headache?

    If you answer yes to two of the above three criteria, migraine is likely 93% of the time. If you answer yes to all three, a migraine diagnosis is 98% likely.

    The American Migraine Foundation is committed to improving the lives of those living with this debilitating disease. For more of the latest news and information on migraine, visit the AMF Resource Library. For help finding a healthcare provider, check out our Find a Doctor tool. Together, we are as relentless as migraine.

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    Treatment For Chronic Sinus Headaches

    Individuals suffering from sinus headaches who have sought treatment from a primary physician with little success may find it beneficial to seek other treatment options from a specialist. Although primary care physicians can often help patients with occasional sinus headaches, an ENT is better suited to helping patients with chronic sinus problems. Treatment for chronic sinus headaches can provide significant relief for those who suffer from them and make their daily lives much more enjoyable.

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    Sinus Anatomy And Headaches

    Sinuses are air-filled cavities located in your forehead, above your teeth, between your eyes, and behind your nose.

    The sinuses are lined with a mucous membrane that has tiny hairs called cilia. The cilia move mucus, a sticky, gelatinous material produced by the mucous membrane, out of the sinuses and into your nose for drainage. Along the way, the mucus traps bacteria and other germs that can cause infection, and moves them out of the respiratory system.

    When the linings of the sinuses and the inside of your nose become swollen from allergy or infection, fluid can build up. When that happens, bacteria can grow in the fluid and cause an infection. The congestion and infection can produce intense sinus pressure and facial and head pain.

    How To Differentiate Between A Sinus Headache And A Migraine

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    Sinus headaches are accompanied by fever and thick, discolored nasal discharge. If your head or other parts of your face hurt but you dont have fever or congestion, and your nasal discharge is clear, its probably a migraine headache. Migraines are often accompanied by nausea and sensitivity to sound and light.

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    What The Treatment For Sinus Infections

    In order to eradicate the infection, youll need an antibiotic.

    Some people continue to experience a lingering sinus infection even after antibiotics. Sinuses are considered a closed cavity. Removing infection from a closed cavity can require more prolonged antibiotic usage compared to infections that occur in an open cavity .

    A sinus infection might require 2-4 weeks of antibiotics plus additional methods to encourage drainage of the sinuses. For a sinus infection to clear completely, we often recommend saline sprays, topical steroid sprays , and decongestants in addition to an antibiotic.

    How Do You Tell The Two Apart

    According to research, many people who have pain in the sinus region are actually experiencing migraine or another type of headache. Sinus headache is the most common incorrect diagnosis given to someone who really has migraine.

    An older study from 2004 found that 88 percent of participants with a history of sinus headache actually met the clinical criteria for migraine.

    So, how do you know if youre experiencing sinus pain or migraine?

    When trying to tell the two conditions apart, there are a couple of important things to consider, including symptoms and timing.

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