How to Know When to Worry About a Headache

Woman sitting at her desk in front of her computer with her eyes closed touching her temples with both hands in pain.

Nearly 45 million people experience and complain of headaches each year in the United States. In fact, of all ailments, headaches are the most experienced and reported.

Out of the 36 different types of headaches, most are no cause for serious concern, but some may be the first indicator of a more serious underlying health condition or illness.

At Amory Urgent Care, we believe that knowing exactly when to worry about headaches is essential to your overall health and wellbeing. If you’re experiencing persistent or worsening headaches, it may be time to seek medical attention. Don’t live with a headache another day; get seen today.

Our urgent care facility is open seven days a week to diagnose and treat you for headaches; just walk in.

What is a headache?

A headache is a painful feeling that can range from dull to sharp depending on why you are experiencing it and the severity of your symptoms.

Although it may feel like the pain is coming from your brain, it isn’t. Most headaches are caused by increased sensation in the nerves, blood vessels, and muscles of the head and neck.

Headaches are often caused by issues with no serious underlying condition, such as:

  • Lack of sleep
  • Caffeine withdrawal
  • Stress
  • Loud noises
  • Tight headwear
  • Extended screen time
  • Incorrect glasses or contact lens prescription
  • Anxiety
  • Allergies

In rare cases, headaches are a symptom of an underlying condition that requires immediate medical attention.

When to worry about a headache

A common headache typically causes mild to moderate pain in the head, neck and face. If your pain becomes severe, it could indicate a more severe health issue.

Your headache may be classified as more severe if you experience:

  • Sudden, intense headache pain
  • Sharp pain
  • A stiff neck
  • A fever higher than 102
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • A nosebleed
  • Fainting
  • Loss of balance
  • Dizziness
  • Pressure in the back of your head
  • Pain that wakes you from sleep or gets worse when you change position
  • Blurry vision
  • Face tingling
  • Confusion
  • Droopiness on one side of your face
  • Weakness on one side of your body
  • Slurred or garbled speech
  • Difficulty walking
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Night sweats
  • Seizures
  • Facial swelling
  • A bump on your head

What causes severe, worrisome headaches?

There are various underlying conditions and illnesses that a headache could be a symptom of, including:

  • Severe dehydration
  • Tooth or gum infection
  • High blood pressure
  • Cancer
  • Meningococcal disease
  • A brain tumor, aneurysm or hemorrhage

When to visit Amory Urgent Care

If your headache symptoms do not improve or worsen rapidly, you should visit Amory Urgent Care today for further diagnosis and comprehensive treatment. Your life could depend on it.

It is critical to be seen at your neighborhood urgent care facility or emergency room if you believe you or a loved one is experiencing:

  • A stroke
  • Concussion
  • Severe head trauma due to a direct blow to the head or neck
  • Heatstroke
  • Preeclampsia in pregnant women

Visit Amory Urgent Care to get the treatment you need for your persistent headache today. We welcome walk-in appointments seven days a week to help you feel better sooner.