Traction and Inflammatory Headaches
Serious headaches, such as traction and inflammatory headaches, can be a warning sign for a more severe condition. A traction headache can occur when the pain-sensitive parts of the head are pulled or stretched (such as with eyestrain). Inflammatory headaches are those that result from diseases of the sinuses, spine, neck, ears, and teeth. Both traction headaches and inflammatory headaches can be signals of serious disorders, such as brain tumors, strokes, and head trauma.
Like other types of pain, headaches can serve as warning signals of more serious disorders. This is particularly true for headaches caused by traction or inflammation.
Traction headaches can occur if the pain-sensitive parts of the head are pulled, stretched, or displaced. One example is when eye muscles are tensed to compensate for eyestrain.
Headaches caused by inflammation can include those related to meningitis, as well as those resulting from diseases of the sinuses, spine, neck, ears, and teeth.
Ear and tooth infections and glaucoma can cause headaches. With oral and dental disorders, headaches are experienced as pain in the entire head, including the face. These headaches are treated by curing the underlying problem. This may involve surgery, antibiotics, or other drugs.
The characteristics of the various types of serious traction and inflammatory headaches vary by disorder. Some of the common disorders include:
- Brain tumors
- Spinal taps
- Head trauma
- Temporal arteritis
- Trigeminal neuralgia
- Sinus infections.
Brain tumors are diagnosed in about 11,000 people every year. As they grow, these tumors sometimes cause headaches by pushing on the outer layer of nerve tissue that covers the brain or by pressing against the walls of pain-sensitive blood vessels. Headaches resulting from a brain tumor may be periodic or continuous. Typically, it feels like a strong pressure is being applied to the head. The pain is relieved when the tumor is treated by surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.