Headache with children

Headaches in children are common and are usually not serious. Just like adults, children can develop different types of headaches migraines, stress-related (tension) headaches, although their symptoms may be different!!

Because headaches in children may be caused by an infection, high levels of stress or anxiety, or minor head trauma. It is important to pay attention to your child's headache symptoms and to consult a doctor once the headache worsens or occurs frequently.

What are the symptoms??

For example, a migraine in an adult almost always affects just one side of the head, whereas a child's migraine often affects both sides of the head. Also, migraines in children typically don't last as long they last for an hour or so.

Migraines can be manifested by:

  • Head pain
  • Nausea & vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Extreme sensitivity to light and sound

Even infants can have migraines. A child who's too young to tell you what's wrong may cry and hold his or her head to indicate severe pain.

Tension headache
often, stress related, tension-type headaches feature a pressing tightness that occurs on both sides of the head. They can last from 30 minutes to several days.

Chronic daily headache
Both migraines and tension headaches can begin happening more frequently. If your child has headaches more than 15 days a month for more than three months, doctors call this a "chronic daily headache." This problem usually occurs when your child takes pain medications — even the nonprescription variety — too frequently.

When shall you visit a doctor?

  • If it occurs at least once a month
  • After head injury
  • if it is accompanied by persistent vomiting or visual changes
  • if it is accompanied by fever, along with neck pain or stiffness

How to manage simple headache at home?

Over-the-counter (OTC) pain medications, such as acetaminophen (Revanin, Adol, others) and ibuprofen (Brufen, ibugesic, others), are usually effective in reducing headache pain. Before giving your child pain medication, keep these points in mind:

  • Read labels carefully and use only the dosages recommended for your child, depending on the age and weight, or ask your pharmacist about it.
  • Don't give doses more frequently than recommended.
  • Don't give your child OTC pain medication more than two or three days a week. Daily use can trigger a rebound headache, a type of headache caused by overuse of pain medications.
  • Use caution when giving aspirin to children or teenagers. Unless was prescribed by the doctor.

In addition to OTC pain medications, the following measures can help ease your child's headache:

  • Rest and relax. Encourage your child to rest in a dark, quiet room. Sleeping often resolves headaches in children.

  • Use a cool, wet compress. While your child rests, place a cool, wet cloth on his or her forehead.

  • Offer a healthy snack. If your child hasn't eaten in a while, offer a piece of fruit, whole-wheat crackers or low-fat cheese. Going without meals can sometimes make headaches worse.