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Stress and Anxiety Can Cause Tension and Migraine Headaches

By Rheyanne Weaver HERWriter
 
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According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, there is “pain or discomfort in the head, scalp, or neck, usually associated with muscle tightness in these areas.” This muscle tightness can be caused by stress and anxiety.

Stress, depression and anxiety are also causes of migraines. Further delving into stress, “repressed emotions can also precipitate migraine headaches, and the muscle tension often brought on by stressful situations can add to the severity of the headache,” according to the NHF.

If the migraines are determined to be caused by any of the previous three triggers, then those triggers can possibly be treated to relieve the migraines.

Migraines are different from tension headaches because the pain is pulsating or throbbing and is usually only found on one side of the head, according to the NHF.

There is also "nausea, vomiting, or sensitivity to light," according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.

People can have coexisting migraine and tension-type headaches as well.

Sources:
http://www.headaches.org/NHF_Programs/National_Headache_Awareness_Week
http://www.headaches.org/educational_modules/completeguide/othindex.html
http://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/related-illnesses/headaches
http://www.headaches.org/education/Headache_Topic_Sheets/Tension-Type_He...
http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/000797.htm
http://www.headaches.org/education/Headache_Topic_Sheets/Migraine
http://www.headaches.org/education/Headache_Topic_Sheets/Cluster_Headaches
http://www.headaches.org/education/Headache_Topic_Sheets/Coexisting_Migr...
http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/000709.htm

Add a Comment4 Comments

EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

Ok for anonymous you don't know what you are talking about. I have headaches due to anxiety. Had several doctors tell me so. I still freak out cause of them. My anxiety is just getting worse. These people are just being helpful there is no reason to be rude to them.

September 10, 2012 - 4:43pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

You probably dont get on here and wont see this, but you are absolutely right. The only time in my life that i ever had a migraine was shortly after i was diagnosed with anxiety and i was extremely stressed out about it. I think this is a good article and the people that wrote it wouldnt have put migraines are caused by stress and anxiety unless they had the research to back it up. My mom has gotten severe migraines for years and had to step down from a position because the stress of it was causing her to have more of them. Stress and anxiety do cause migraines even if some people dont believe they do.

February 12, 2013 - 5:57pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

This is absolutely NOT true. Stress does not trigger migraines! It is a disease with the headache as a symptom ONLY. Migraine pain is caused by vasodilation in the cranial blood vessels (expansion of the blood vessels), while headache pain is caused by vasoconstriction (narrowing of the blood vessels). Get your facts straight! Migraine sufferers have enough myths to fight. If your headache is caused by stress it is NOT a migraine. http://www.migraines.org/myth/mythreal.htm

August 5, 2010 - 5:36am
Janice Jackson

I enjoyed your article - and thanks for putting it in plain English - about the reasons for migraines. I was wondering if you saw anything in your research about particular foods causing migraines?

May 5, 2010 - 7:41am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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