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Migraines are a debilitating form of headache. This type of headache makes most people unable to function until the pain subsides. The pain of a migraine usually presents as throbbing or pulsating, and can last for hours to days. People also may experience nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light and sound.
These headaches occur in clusters, often for weeks to months at a time, and then disappear suddenly. They are marked by repeated, short-lasting attacks of excruciating, unilateral head pain of short duration. A cluster headache may be accompanied by redness or tearing of the eye and nasal congestion or runny nose. Often mistaken for sinus or migraine headaches, cluster headaches are characterized by sharp, stabbing pain in or around the eye, temple, forehead or cheeks.
A rare, sustained and severe type of migraine headache, lasting more than 72 hours that is characterized by intense pain and nausea, often leading to hospitalization.
Chronic daily headaches occur frequently, usually more than 15 days per month. Chronic daily headaches are classified as either long duration (lasting more than four hours) and short duration (lasting less than four hours). The majority of people who experience chronic daily headaches have long-duration headaches.
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Medication overuse headaches, sometimes called rebound headaches, occur when people who experience migraine or tension headaches take too much analgesic or anti-migraine medication. When the effect of one dose wears off, the next headache occurs and another round of medication is taken. A vicious cycle is created of ever-increasing headaches and more frequent medication use.
Menstrual migraine is a headache that occurs during the menstrual cycle. It can occur two days before and up to three days after the beginning of a woman's period. Although the cause is not explicitly known, menstrual migraine may be triggered by changes in hormone levels. The most likely cause is the fall in estrogen levels that takes place just before the beginning of menses.
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