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Headaches


Headaches are an all too common nuisance. They can also be a debilitating condition that makes living your daily life difficult. Here at the Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California, headaches are treated as a neurological issue. We help you recognize the symptoms, find the cause and treat the pain.

What Causes Headaches?

Most often, a headache is caused by one of two things:

  • An inflammation, spasm or stretching in the scalp or membranes that cover the brain and in the muscles of the face and jaw.
  • A temporary distortion of the blood vessels that supply the brain. They tighten, then relax and expand. The enlarged blood vessels press against nerves, causing pain. A shortage of serotonin, a chemical in the brain, can cause the vessels to constrict.

Treating the Common Headaches

About 90 percent of all headaches are harmless episodes that can be treated with over-the-counter painkillers. Alone or together with rest, ice packs or relaxation techniques, common headaches are often highly and easily treatable.

Personalized Care for Chronic Headache Sufferers

For more severe or ongoing pain, such as a migraine, seek the help of a neurologist at Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California. Headaches differ from person to person and each patient that seeks help at Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California will receive the utmost care and personalized treatment plan.

At the Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California, headaches are approached from a variety of angles. Physicians begin with a thorough assessment of certain factors that may provide clues to headache triggers including:

  • Environmental considerations
  • Emotional factors
  • Lifestyle considerations

From the information gathered, Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California's team develops treatment strategies to avoid these triggers and stop headaches before they start, toward the ultimate goal of relief from chronic headache suffering.

A Multidisciplinary Approach to Headache Diagnosis

The Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California headache team may also collaborate with neurosurgery, otolaryngology and ophthalmology experts to determine whether surgical, ENT or vision problems play a causal role.

In every case, the Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California brings together the technology and professional expertise for optimal headache diagnosis and treatment.

For assistance with a physician referral, call 1-888-800-7688. To request additional information from someone at the Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California, email us today.