Symptoms of Ice Pick Headaches and Home Remedies

Ice pick headaches are characterized by sharp slashes of pain that usually attack one side and occurs at random; early in the morning for some, in the middle of the night for others. Typically, they last anywhere from five to 30 seconds, and are debilitating when they occur. They can be terrifying, but are typically absent of critical disease (such as a tumor or stroke), despite that they might occur as often as several times per day. They are typical, however, in people who suffer from migraine disease or some other known head-pain disorder.

How can I prevent ice pick headaches?

  • More than 60 percent of ice pick headaches are related to migraines. Those taking indomethacin, an anti-inflammatory drug used to treat migraines, can potentially avoid a few occurrences by maintaining their migraine regimen. However, the drug has been linked to long-term health problems, so other methods have been sought that prevent damage, such as melatonin. It’s a non-prescription drug that can be bought at drug stores. Other preventative methods are relaxation methods, such as meditation, that prevents tension from occurring in the brain.
  • Tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline or nortriptyline, are also often prescribed to prevent ice pick headaches, but should be limited to once or twice per week to prevent rebound headaches (that occur because of treatment).
  • Alcohol has also been shown to affect headache cycles negatively, exacerbating the condition.

What are the symptoms of an ice pick headache?

  • The sensation of pressure build-up can also indicate an oncoming ice pick headache.
  • Neck injuries can also be related.
  • Debilitating pain for five to 30 seconds, occurring at random once or several times per day. These typically accompany migraine sufferers.

How do I get rid of an ice pick headache?

  • Because they’re typically fleeting and debilitating, they are difficult to treat on the spot. Pre-emptive treatment through either a medicinal regimen or consultation with a doctor for other advice is typically the best route. Avoid straining your eyes, avoid excessive noise, get plenty of sleep, eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, and relax as much as possible to keep tension low.
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