Headaches can be more complicated than people realize. Different kinds can have their own set of symptoms, happen for different reasons, and need different kinds of treatment. Once you know the type of headache you have, you and your doctor can find the treatment that’s most likely to help eliminate or prevent them.
Forehead: Headaches that occur along both sides of the forehead are often tension headaches or sinus headaches. If the pain is one-sided, then migraine or cluster headache may be more likely.
Top of head: Pain along the top of the head is non-specific and can be seen with tension headaches as well as migraine headaches.
Back of head: Headache pain occurring along the back of the head is often associated with tension headache, especially if spasms of the neck or cervical spinal muscles are identified. Other causes include shingles and occipital neuritis.
Side of head: Pain on the side of the head can be associated with migraine headaches, especially if the pain is one-sided or unilateral. Very severe pain on one side of the head may suggest cluster headache. Tension headache can cause pressure and pain along both sides of the head. Giant cell arteritis is a less common cause of pain on the side of the head in people over the age of 55 years.
Behind eye: Pain located behind one eye can be seen with migraine headache. If the pain is located behind both eyes, sinus headache may be a consideration. Rarely, orbital tumors can cause pain behind the eye.