What Are the Different Types?There are many different types of head pain. Sometimes healthcare providers will separate these types into primary or secondary headaches. They primary type is not caused by an underlying condition. The most common types of primary headaches include:
- Tension-type headaches (also known as tension or stress headaches)
- Migraine headaches
- Cluster headaches.
The secondary type is caused by an underlying condition. There are many conditions that can cause this type (see Types of Headaches for a list).
Other times, they will be separated into acute, subacute, or chronic headaches (see Causes of Headaches). You may also see them separated into vascular, muscle contraction (tension), traction, and inflammatory types.
Head Pain and Other SymptomsA headache is a symptom, just like a fever or diarrhea. Head pain can vary in:
- The type of pain (throbbing, dull, sharp, etc.)
- Where the pain is located
- How long they take to peak from when they first occur
- How often they occur and how long they last
- When they occur (season, month, menstrual cycle, week, hour of day).
Other symptoms can occur. These other symptoms can give healthcare providers clues into what is causing the pain.
(Click Headache Symptoms for other symptoms that can accompany headaches and for information that explains when headache symptoms can be serious.)