Chronic daily headache refers to headaches that occur for more than 15 days a month. There are lots of different types of chronic daily headache.
• Chronic migraine, status migrainosus (a migraine that lasts longer than 72 hours and does not respond to treatment)
• Chronic tension-type headache (headache without the vomiting or photosensitivity that accompany migraine lasting 15 days per month or more)
• New persistent daily headache (that develops rapidly and does not go away for several months, possibly the result of a viral infection)
• Medication overuse headache (result from taking pain medication for an extended period of time and is a rebound reaction of the body)
• Chronic cluster headache (have no remission period) Normally cluster headaches occur at specific times of the year and then stop.
• Hemicrania continua (headache on one side of the face or head with other symptoms such as swollen eyes and runny nose) The headache can occur daily and last as long as six months before a remission.
• Occipital neuralgia (headache at the base of the skull caused by compression of the occipital nerves) Pain and pressure is felt at the neck and the back of the head, which may radiate to the forehead. It isn’t usually severe but it is constant with brief periods of remission.
What Treatments are there?
The type of treatment depends on the type of headache you have, but there are many options:
Triptan Tablets (or injection)
Triptan tablets or injections constrict enlarged blood vessels thought to be responsible for migraines and are taken during a migraine to stop it. This medication can also be used for other types of headaches such as cluster headaches.
If you have medication overuse headache you will have to stop all your headache pills and triptans. It can take anything from one to 12 weeks after ceasing medication for the headaches to resolve. It is best to do this with the advice and support of your doctor. If you are suffering a lot from the withdrawal, your doctor may be able to give you a different type of medication provided it is not the same class you are addicted to.