A headache accompanied by watery, itchy eyes and a stuffy nose is often believed to be a sinus headache. However, these symptoms may not always necessarily mean you have a sinus headache as it can be a migraine. So many people mistake a migraine for a sinus headache whereas both have different treatments. So is it a sinus headache or a migraine?
Sinus headache Symptoms Versus Migraine Symptoms
Both a sinus headache and a migraine cause pain usually centered on the forehead with itchy, watery eyes. Both types of headaches can also result in pain while moving. However, migraines often also cause light sensitivity, nausea, vomiting, and a throbbing sensation in the head.
In most cases, migraine happens to those who tend to experience severe headaches frequently. On the other hand, the cause of a sinus headache is often an infection or inflamed nasal airways, which causes congestion. The inflammation and congestion result in pressure and pain in the cheekbones and forehead.
Sinus Headaches and Migraine Treatments
Treating a sinus headache typically involves the use of pain medications, Neti Pots, and decongestants. Decongestants and Neti Pots are highly effective in relieving sinus pressure and congestion. If an infection causes a sinus headache, nasal steroids or antibiotics can also be prescribed to eliminate the infection. Infection-related sinus headaches usually improve as soon as an individual begins treatment.
Over-the-counter extra-strength pain relievers (NSAIDs) may be effective in relieving pain short-term. However, treating migraine should not only aim to eliminate the pain but also prevent future migraines and their frequency. The most commonly used medication to relieve a migraine is triptans.
Migraines can also be treated with a number of seizure medications antidepressants if your doctor thinks it is appropriate in your case. In some cases, even Botox shots can work to prevent migraines. Avoiding too much stress and regular physical activity can also help you in preventing migraines.
If you experience severe migraines that you cannot relieve with medications that begin to have an overall impact on your everyday life, consult a doctor as soon as possible.
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