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What are the symptoms of a cluster headache?

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The pain is only on one side of your head. It is severe, piercing and peaks within minutes. Your eye on the affected side becomes red and watery. You often have nasal congestion with a runny nose on that same side as well. It lasts from 30 minutes to 2 hours, then fades or disappears, only to come back a day or so later. Some people can have four or more attacks in a day.

Cluster headaches can strike every day for weeks or months, and then stay away for a long time. They’re more common in men and tend to start between ages 25 and 50. Heavy smokers get them more often than nonsmokers. Stress, drinking alcohol, and eating certain foods play a role in triggering the headaches for some people, but doctors don’t know the root cause of them.

SOURCES:

Buchholz, D. , Workman Publishing Company, 2002. Heal Your Headache: The 1-2-3 Program for Taking Charge of Your Pain

Livingstone, I. , Novak Owl Books, 2004. Breaking the Headache Cycle: A Proven Program for Treating and Preventing Recurring Headaches

Smith T. , 2004. Drugs

Young, W. , Demos Medical Publishing, 2004. Migraine and Other Headaches

Cady R. , July 2005. Mayo Clinic Proceedings

Cleveland Clinic.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on August 18, 2019

SOURCES:

Buchholz, D. , Workman Publishing Company, 2002. Heal Your Headache: The 1-2-3 Program for Taking Charge of Your Pain

Livingstone, I. , Novak Owl Books, 2004. Breaking the Headache Cycle: A Proven Program for Treating and Preventing Recurring Headaches

Smith T. , 2004. Drugs

Young, W. , Demos Medical Publishing, 2004. Migraine and Other Headaches

Cady R. , July 2005. Mayo Clinic Proceedings

Cleveland Clinic.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on August 18, 2019

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How can I prevent migraines or severe headaches?

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