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Migraine vs Sinus Headaches

May 24th, 2011


By: Chad Melius

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A common question from headache sufferers is, “I have a headache above the right eye. What type of headache is it, and how do I get rid of it?” From this information alone, it is not possible to answer the question, since a “headache above eye” can be caused by several different things.

Many people, including doctors, mistake a sinus headache for a migraine headache. The reason they are fooled is because both types of headaches can have similar symptoms.

Symptoms that are similar

  • Location: Although migraines are commonly restricted to one side of the head, they may spread across the forehead, or from cheek to cheek, and thus be mistaken for a sinus headache.

  • Relation to the weather: A falling barometer, due to an approaching rainstorm, causes 70% of migraine-prone people to have a headache. But that doesn’t mean that, if you get a headache under such circumstances, it is a migraine. Some people with allergies are affected by rainy weather also.

  • Cold symptoms: Those of us with allergies know that perhaps the most common symptom is a stuffed or runny nose. So also having a headache might lead us to believe it is a sinus problem. But it’s not uncommon for a migraine to be associated with a runny nose also, so that symptom is not a way to differentiate between the two types of headache.

How to tell the difference

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  • Type of pain: A sinus headache has a steady dull, deep pain. A migraine tends to be a throbbing pain.

  • Bending over: If this type of movement increases the severity of the pain, it is likely a sinus headache.

  • Sensitivity: If the pain increases with bright lights, loud sounds, or noxious smells, it is probably a migraine.

  • Fever:A rise in body temperature is associated with a sinus headache.

  • Nausea: Migraine headaches can cause stomach upset, or even vomiting.

  • Nasal discharge: If this is yellow or greenish in color, sinus is indicated. Migraine discharge is generally clear.

Recommended treatment

A migraine headache will usually dissipate by itself in 4 – 72 hours. The pain may be relieved by over-the-counter medications, such as aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen. There are also natural, or homeopathic treatments available, both medications and techniques, such as massage.

The Migraine Solution is an effective, natural migraine treatment system. It was developed after an in-depth study of the experiences of hundreds of migraine patients who had relieved their own symptoms. The Migraine Solution, unlike other natural migraine remedies, treats the root cause of your migraines, not just the symptoms.

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It is best to try to find the cause of a sinus headache, before attempting to treat it. If it is a frequent occurrence, you should consult your doctor for a diagnosis. Antibiotics are usually required to affect a cure.

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