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Full Question: I wake up every morning with a soreness in the back of my neck and a hang-over like headache which makes me nauseous. I do not drink. I have had previous neck discectomy and fusion at three levels. I suffer from chronic muscle tightness in neck and shoulders. The headache lasts all day. Any suggestions? Jonathan. Answer: Dear Jonathan; You most probably have cervicogenic headaches based on your former neck problems. I suspect you don't sleep well, and I would recommend you talk to your physician about a medication called tizanidine (Zanaflex), which reduces muscle spasm and helps sleep. It also helps chronic daily headaches. Good luck, John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert If you need to find a headache and Migraine specialist, please see our listing of patient recommended specialists . Another good source of information and support is our forum . To post to the forum, you'll need to register, even if you're already regis...
Muscle contraction headache; Headache - benign; Headache - tension; Chronic headaches - tension; Rebound headaches - tension
Learn and practice stress management . Some people find relaxation exercises or meditation helpful. Biofeedback may improve relaxation exercises and may be helpful for chronic tension headache.
Tips to prevent tension headaches:
Keep warm if the headache is associated with cold.
Use a different pillow or change sleeping positions.
Practice good posture when reading, working, or doing other activities.
Exercise the neck and shoulders frequently when typing, working on computers, or doing other close work.
Get plenty of sleep and rest.
Massaging sore muscles may also help.
Silver N. Headache (chronic tension-type). Am Fam Physician . 2007:76(1):114-116.
Fumal A, Schoenen J. Tension-type headache: current research and clinical management. Lancet Neurol . 2008:7(...
Introduction Most people have had headaches. There are many different kinds of headaches, and they range from being an infrequent annoyance to a persistent, severe, and disabling medical condition. Brain tissue itself does not generate sensations of pain, so the brain is not what hurts when you have a headache. Rather, the pain occurs in some of the following locations: The tissues covering the brain The attaching structures at the base of the brain Muscles and blood vessels around the scalp, face, and neck Doctors categorize headaches as either primary or secondary. The category helps to distinguish the many different kinds of headaches and to determine right treatments for each. Primary and Secondary Headaches A headache is considered primary when it is not caused by another medical condition or disease. Most primary headaches fall into three main types: tension-type, migraine, and cluster headaches. Tension-type headache is the most common primary headache and accounts for 90% of all headac...
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