Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Mercyhealth Visitor Guidelines: Visitor guidelines have changed at some Mercyhealth locations. Please click here for the latest guidelines in place at our facilities. What to expect when... continue reading

Headaches Come in Many Varieties

Almost everyone has had a headache. Headache is the most common type of pain and causes quality of life issues for many.

Mild, occasional headaches can be successfully treated with over-the-counter pain medicines. Simple lifestyle changes—getting more sleep and rest and looking at foods and diet—can also be helpful for some types of headaches. But some headaches can be a sign of a more serious health problem.

There are many types of mild-to-severe headaches:

Migraine – Recurring types of headaches that have many different symptoms and causes

Tension (most common) – Caused by tight muscles in shoulders, neck, scalp and jaw

Cluster – A brief, painful ache around one eye

Exertional – Caused by lengthy, intense exercising

Hypnic – Only happens during sleep and wakes the person

Sinus – Caused by pain, pressure and infection in the sinuses

Thunderclap – Comes on suddenly and causes intense pain and often nausea and vomiting

Ice pick – A sudden stabbing pain in the face, eye or temple

Rebound – A withdrawal symptom that can happen when a pain reliever wears off

Head injury – A headache caused by a concussion or other trauma

Not all headaches require a doctor’s attention. But sometimes headaches warn of a more serious disorder. Let your health care provider know if you have sudden, severe headaches. Call 911 if you have a headache after a blow to your head, or if you have a headache along with a stiff neck, fever, confusion, loss of consciousness, or pain in the eye or ear.


If you have questions or concerns about your symptoms now, see a Mercyhealth health care provider at Virtual Visit Now.

Mercyhealth Virtual Visit Now gives you remote access to the best of health care from your phone, tablet or computer. Our Virtual Visit Now team can help you feel better from the comfort of your own home. After assessing your symptoms, they’ll recommend treatments that can include simple comfort measures, prescription medicine or an office visit.

Virtual Visit Now is not available for emergency care. If you need emergency care, please call 911.

Mercyhealth MyChart Sign In