Different Ways of Cluster Headache Treatments and Cures

Different Ways of Headache Cures


If you are looking for ways for headache cures then you are sure to get your answer in the Internet as there are several different ways to solve this problem. Yet not all headaches are common occurrences although it most people experience the problem several times in their life. Generally, it is believed that headaches are attacks that have no life threatening postures in them and are usually caused by several factors. However, those headaches that are continuous or too frequent can have serious implications as the same may not be due to any ordinary life causes, but due to other internal factors.

Hence, for persistent headaches you must always consult a doctor and get professional advice. Migraine is another recurring type of severe headaches which affects one part of the head and may be severe, but are not life threatening. Headaches in general are known to be attacked in response to your body’s physical and emotional levels. Hence, for mild to severe headache cures human civilization over a period of time have discovered several treatments both over the counter medication and natural cares.

Curing general headaches

Curing general headaches

General headaches can be of several types and they are mostly caused due to the lifestyles of the person affected to small emotional or physical disturbances. Over time they tend to disappear as quickly as they come yet for the person who suffers them there is irritation and annoyance. Therefore, in most cases headache cures are for that temporary period when a person suffers most. In many cases a headache would get cured just like that although the person must have the inherent strength to withstand the attack.

Usually over the counter medicine helps a lot and apart from non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs people who are affected by migraines take beta blockers or anti-depressants to prevent headaches. It must be noted that migraines are more severe and lasting than an ordinary headache.

The easiest and the natural way for overcoming headache when it arrives is to drink plenty of water and find yourself a quiet place to sit and relax away from all noise and activities. The darker the place where you rest under such circumstances the better it is as light can be an irritant and increase the pain. You may make some adjustments in your room temperatures whether natural, like opening of windows, or artificial like air conditioning. If you open the window to try keep your face away from the window. You may also use a wet cloth for placing it on your forehead.

You can try massaging your head, neck or earlobes slowly so that there is some kind of relaxation to the tensed muscles and nerves on that part of the face. You can also try meditation, prayers, deep breathing exercises and other activities to help reduce the pain as these too are good headache cures.

What are Cluster Headaches and What Triggers Them?

Cluster Headache Introduction and Symptoms

Cluster Headache Introduction and Symptoms

If you suffer from cluster headaches you know that it is one of the most painful types of headaches you can possibly have. Cluster headaches occur in cyclical patterns or “clusters”. A cyclical occurrence off requent headaches may last for weeks or even months. Once the cycle isover, the headaches may stop, sometimes for a year or longer (ifyou’re lucky). Everyone is different, but for the most part, theaverage cluster headache sufferer will have episodes of clusters headaches about once a year.

Usually, the cluster headaches will occur the same time every year. Some people will suffer from them in the spring (like me), while others may battle them in the winter. Although cluster headaches are extremely painful, they are not life threatening.

The exact causes of cluster headaches is somewhat of a mystery but it has been noted that certain things will trigger an onset. For some people, a cluster headache trigger can be the time change that happens twice a year. There is some connection tothe headaches and a person’s biological clock, but the exact connection is not known. Another trigger of these headaches may be sleep apnea.

This decreases blood oxygen levels to the brain because people with sleep apnea have episodes during their sleep when they stop breathing. This lack of oxygen to the brain can bring on a cluster headache which will wake a person from their sleep. The strange thingis, sleep apnea does not cause a cluster headache during the remission period. Nitroglycerin can be a trigger for cluster headaches.

For those that must take nitroglycerin for episodes of chest pain, a dose of This medicine can cause a spontaneous cluster headache.

The chest pain may be relieved, but now you have a excruciating headache to deal with. There has been some evidence that suggests exposure to certain perfumes or other smells can cause acluster headache. There has also been some evidence to suggest that overheating can cause a cluster headache to flare up.

The most common triggers for cluster headaches are alcohol and tobacco. Many people who suffer from cluster headaches are heavy drinkers. Justone drink can cause debilitating pain. For this reason, cluster headache sufferers should abstain from all alcohol during their cyclic phase. Sometimes simply avoiding something you identify as a trigger is enough to prevent or at least reduce your clusters!


Cluster Headaches and Valproate

Is Valproate the Answer You’ve Been Looking For?

When you suffer from cluster headaches, you know how important it is to find the proper medication to stop them or reduce their severity. There are several medications that are being used for the treatment of these debilitating headaches. There are first line of defense medications and second and third line of defense medications.

valproic-acid-as-sodium-salt-oralValproate is a second line of defense medication that has had some success in treating cluster headaches. Keep reading to learn more about Valproate and how it can help you if you suffer from clusterheadaches. Valproate is actually an anti-seizure medication that has been used successfully in treating cluster headaches in addition to it’s primary use.

There are many mechanisms by which Valproate works and researchers are unsure as to which mechanism has the effect on cluster headaches. However, in a nutshell, Valproate “calms” thebrain down. If is an effective mood stabilizer also for people who suffer from mania disorders. Valproate is an injection and may work faster than an oral form of medication.

The brand name for Valproate is Depacon. Some medications may interfere with Valproate, so you need to make sure that your doctor is aware of all the medications that you are currently taking so you can avoid a possible life threatening reaction. You also need to make your doctor aware if you have any of the following health problems:

  • If you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant.
  • This medication is not safe to take with pregnancy.
  • If you are allergic to any food or medicines.
  • If you have a history of any type of metabolic disease.
  • If you have organic brain disease.
  • Kidney problems
  • Low levels of white blood cells
  • If you are scheduled for any type of surgery.

As with all medications, Valproate may have side effects, although many people report no side effects with this medication. The following is the most severe side effects and should be reported to your doctor immediately:

  • Rash, difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, lips or tongue.
  • Changes in mood or behavior.
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Fast or irregular heart beat.
  • Hallucinations.
  • Involuntary movement of any part of the body.
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes.
  • Vision changes.

These are a few of the most severe reactions that can occur. You can get a full list from your pharmacist or doctor. Keep in mind that reactions like this are rare. Other side effects that are more common include:

  • Constipation or  diarrhea.
  • Dizziness.
  • Drowsiness
  • Indigestion
  • Nausea
  • Change in appetite
  • Trouble sleeping

Let your doctor know if you find these side effects especially bothersome.

Keep in mind that you should not drive a vehicle or operate any heavy machinery while taking this medication. You should not drink alcohol while taking this medication, because alcohol will increase the
drowsiness effect of the medication. It can also intensify the dizziness.

Cluster Headches and Triptans

It’s pretty rare that I come across someone who’d been suffering from clusters that hasn’t heard of Imitrex or triptans due to their speed in pain relief and effectiveness in treating our types of headaches.

Triptans healthTriptans are used to treat clusters once they occur, so you may hear them called “abortive” medicines (as opposed to “preventative” medicines).

Triptans stimulate serotonin, which is a chemical that is used to transport nerve signals to various parts of the brain. Triptans also can decrease inflammation and aid in reversing blood vessel dilation around the brain. Any one of these actions can help relieve a cluster headache. Triptans have several drugs in it’s class. The brand names for some of these drugs are ones you may recognize. Here is a partial list of brand name triptans:

  • Axert
  • Frova
  • Amerge
  • Maxalt
  • Imitrex
  • Zomig

Although originally used for used for migraines,studies have found that they are also very effective on cluster headaches. As with any medication, you have to make your doctor aware of any medical condition that you may have. Let you doctor know if you have had any of the following:

  • History of heart attack or stroke
  • Allergy to triptans
  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • Peripheral vascular disease
  • Ischemic bowel disease

Certain types of migraines such as ones that cause paralysis onone side or ones that cause dizziness or ringing in the ears.

dosage formsThe great thing about triptans is they are available in a variety of dosage forms. You can get tiptans that can be sprayed up the nose, injected under the skin, or it can be dissolved in the mouth. You do have to be careful not to use triptans within 24 hours of taking ergot alkaloids because it can cause excessive narrowing of the blood vessels.

You should also make sure that you doctor knows if you are taking any other medications that affect serotonin, including herbal medications such as St. John’s Wort.  There are sides effects that you need to be aware of if you start taking triptans. The major side effects are an increased risk for chest pain, stroke or abnormal heart rhythms.

Triptans commonly cause a sensation of pressure or heaviness  in the head. You need to be aware that triptans can cause headaches if the drug is overused or the dose is too high. For many people triptans are the KEY medicine to managing their clusters, talk to your doctor about whether they may be right for you.

Treating Cluster Headaches with Prednisone

prednisoneA cluster headache can be described as a sharp, stabbing pain on one side of the head, usually around the temple or eye socket. Many people say it feels like an ice pick being jammed into your eye, repeatedly (I’m one of them). There are varying forms of treatment for these headaches that we’re going to be discussing, one of which is the commonly prescribed steroid prednisone.

Prednisone is the prescription steroid medication that is used to treat inflammation and cluster headaches, among other things. There is quite a long list of  other names for these corticosteroids. The following is the most commonly prescribed steroids for the treatment of cluster headaches.

  • Cortef
  • Decadron
  • Depo
  • Medrol
  • Dexamethasone
  • Hydrocortone
  • Kenalog
  • 10Kenalog
  • 40Medrol
  • Predacort
  • Prednisone
  • Predpak Solu
  • Cortef Solu
  • Medrol

These are a few of the most commonly used steroids for the treatment of inflammation. Researchers are not completely sure why the steroids help to prevent flare ups of cluster headaches, but they have been used with a lot of success.

As with any drug, these steroids will produce side effects. The longer the steroids are used the more side effects you will have. Keep in mind that the use of steroids will reduce your resistance to infections. So
it is a good idea to stay away from those that may be contagious while taking these steroids.

Some of the most common side affects from the use of steroids are increased appetite, indigestion, decreased appetite, nervousness or restlessness. You may experience dizziness or flushing of the face. If you start experiencing abdominal, back or stomach pain, fainting or fever, vomiting or rapid weight loss you should notify your doctor immediately.

These corticosteroids are usually prescribed in pill form. But they can also be given by injection for faster relief from the pain of cluster headaches. If you have been on steroids for a long period of time, it is important that you taper your dose down. Stopping the steroids abruptly can result in adrenal insufficiency. This can lead to an adrenal crisis, which if left untreated, can lead to death.

It is also important to remember that if you are taking steroids for cluster headaches and you are a diabetic, your blood sugars will soar. Keep a close eye on your blood sugar levels while on the steroids and ask your doctor if your diabetic medication needs to be increased until your steroid treatment is over.


One of the most common second line of defense drugs is Ergotamine. Ergotamine has a single  brand name of Ergomar. The mechanism by which it works is that it constricts blood flow by narrowing the
arteries and veins that supply blood to the head. Ergotamine is also used to alter blood flow patterns that can be associated with vascular headaches. This drug may interact with other medication that you may be on. Some interactions with other medications may cause dangerously decreased blood flow to the brain, to the heart or the fingers and toes. In extreme cases, gangrene can set in, which can be very dangerous and even life threatening. Before you start taking Ergotamine, let your doctor know if you have any of the following medical conditions:*Peripheral vascular disease or poor circulation.*Any type of liver disease.*Any form of heart disease.*Any type of kidney disease.*High blood pressure.*Any type of serious infection.*Hardening of the arteries otherwise known as arteriosclerosis.If you have these conditions, you may not be able to take Ergotamine or your doctor may have to adjust your dosage. You should only take this medication under close supervision of your doctor.Ergotamine can have side effects. The mildest of these side effects can be nausea and vomiting. As always, let your doctor know about any side effects you may be having. If you experience these severe side effects, you should contact your doctor right away or seek immediate medical attention.*An allergic reaction such as difficulty breathing, swelling of the lips, tongue, or face. This can be cause for immediate intervention.*Chest pain.*Significant changes  in heart rate.*Muscle pain in the arms or legs.*Numbness or tingling in the fingers and toes. *Itching.It is important to note that Ergotamine can be habit forming if you take it for a long period of time. Larger and larger doses may be needed to achieve headache relief.  You may also experience withdrawal symptoms when the drug is stopped. Cluster headaches may become a memory if Ergotamine works for you. Talk to your doctor about this medication to see if it is a good fit for
your situation.


Lithium is one of the first line of defense drugs that is used for the prevention of cluster headaches. This drug is most commonly prescribed for patients with manic disorder, including manic depression. But it
has also been used successfully for years for the prevention of cluster headaches. Keep reading to discover more information about Lithium and it’s use in cluster headaches.

Lithium works by stabilizing the serotonin levels in the brain and Central Nervous System (CNS). Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is responsible for the inhibition of anger, aggression, mood, sleep,
vomiting, sexuality, body temperature and appetite. It is thought that since the hypothalamus in the brain has profound effects on the circadian rhythm, lithium helps to regulate that rhythm. Therefore,
cluster headaches that seemed to  be caused by the biological clock, can be successfully treated with the correct doses of Lithium.

Lithium has several brand names also. They are:EskalithEskalith-CRLithobidLithonateLithotabs

You should tell your doctor if you have heart disease, kidney disease, an underactive thyroid or any other medical condition. If you are female, you should let your doctor know if you are pregnant or could be
pregnant because Lithium will cause harm to an unborn baby.

As with any drug, Lithium can produce side effects. The following is a list of side effects to look out for if you are taking Lithium. Notify your doctor immediately or seek immediate medical attention if you
experience shortness of breath, hives, swelling of the face, lips or tongue. Other serious side effects include:Excessive thirst and excessive urination.Hallucinations or blackouts.Weakness, fever,
feelings of confusion or eye pain and vision problems.Feeling light-headed or faint.
Slow heart rate.Pain or cold feeling in your toes and fingers with discoloration.Muscle stiffness,
sweating and fever with fast, irregular heart beats.Watch for early signs of Lithium toxicity which include, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle weakness, drowsiness, tremors, lack of coordination, ringing in the ears.

There are less serious sides effects that can be caused by Lithium. These side effects may be troublesome but may not require you to stop taking the drug. Less serious side effects include:Mild hand tremors.Mild lack of coordination and weakness.Mild nausea, stomach pain, vomiting or loss of appetite.Itching skin.

It is also critical that you let  your doctor know if you are on any other medications. There is a large list of medicines that Lithium can interact with.

Lithium is a powerful medication, but it has been very successful in treating patients that suffer from cluster headaches. Maybe it is right for you. Ask your doctor about using Lithium for treatment of your cluster headaches.

DHE: Cluster Headache Miracle

DHE: Cluster Headache Miracle Drug?One of the medications that can help your clusters when nothing else can is called Dihydroergotamine. This isan intravenous form of medication that can bring fast relief from a cluster headache.  For the sake of this article we are going  to call it DHE for short. Read on to discover some more information about how intravenous DHE is used for the treatment of cluster headaches and if it may be something worth talking to your doctor about. Intravenous DHE works in just about the same way that Ergotamine works. In fact it is a derivative of Ergotamine.  It is also narrows the blood vessels and decreases the blood flow to the head. The brand name for DHE is D.H.E. – 45. Many people who suffer from cluster headaches have reported fast relief from an injection of DHE.

But as with  the Ergotamine, there is danger if you have certain medical conditions or if you are on certain medications. You must make your doctor aware of everything that you are taking and all of your medical problems. In some cases, there can be such a decreased amount of blood flow to the hands or feet that it may cause gangrene or parts of these extremities to die. Make sure that you know all the risks before taking DHE.

If you have any of the following medical conditions, you must make your doctor aware. He may not be able to prescribe intravenous DHE or he may need to adjust the dose. *Heart disease*High blood pressure*Infections in the blood*Severe liver or kidney disease*Diabetes*Stomach problemsThis
medication should not be taken if you are pregnant. A nursing mother cannot take DHE because it does pass through the breast milk. Now for the side effects of intravenous DHE. First, we will look at mild
side effects. These side effects may be uncomfortable, but usually not enough to make you stop taking the medication. *Dizziness*Nausea*Vomiting*Diarrhea*Increased sweating*Flushing *Worsening headacheBut if you experience any of the following severe side effects, you need to contact your doctor immediately. These side effects are:*Trouble breathing*Swelling of the face, lips or tongue*Mood changes*Tingling or numbness in the hands and feet.*Muscle pain*Weakness*Chest pain*Confusion*Fast or slow heartbeatIntravenous DHE has the advantage, because it works faster than a pill. It can be a lifesaver when you are having a cluster headache. Talk with your doctor about this medication. He may want to give it a try when you have your next bout with cluster headaches or if nothing else is successful.

Treating Cluster Headaches with Methysergide

Treating Cluster Headaches with MethysergideCluster headaches can interfere with your life. If you suffer from these type of headaches it is important that you contact your doctor and get medication that will help prevent them. There is a second line of defense medications that may prevent a cluster headache from occurring. Read on to learn more about Methysergide, which is one of these second line of defense medications.Methysergide belongs to a group of medications called ergot alkaloids.
This type of medication is used to prevent headaches and not used to treat an attack of cluster headaches. Methysergide only has one brand name which is, Sansert. If your doctor prescribes Methysergide for you, make sure you tell him if you have any of the following conditions: -Allergies to any ergot medications and allergies to any foods,dyes or preservatives. -Pregnancy. Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or thinkingabout becoming pregnant. This drug could be harmful to your unbornbaby.-Breast feeding. This drug passes through the breast milk and canproduce vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures.-Arthritis-Heart disease-Infection-Kidney or liver disease-Lung disease-Stomach ulcers. This medication can make this condition worsen.-High blood pressure.The exact way that Methysergide works on cluster headaches is unknown, but it has been highly successful in treating patients with these painful headaches.As with all medications, you have to be aware of the side effects that this medication can cause. The following list is the most severe side effects that you can have and should be reported immediately to the doctor. -Chest pain or tightness.-Seizures-Painful urination-Fever-Pain in arms, legs, groin or lower back.-Swelling of hands, ankles or feet-Abdominal pain-Numbness or tingling of fingers.-Changes in vision-Fast or slow heartbeat-Hallucinations-Skin rashThere are side effects that do not need immediate attention. These side effects will decrease once you are on the medication for a while. Your body will adjust to the medication and the side effects will lessen.

You need to decide if the side effects are worth the relief from the pain of the cluster headaches. The list of less severe side affects are as follows:-Diarrhea-Dizziness-Drowsiness-Nausea-Vomiting-Constipation-Heartburn -Trouble sleepingSo if you are a cluster headache sufferer, check with your doctor about prescribing Methysergide to prevent these attacks. This medication could be what you need to set you free from the pain.

Treating Cluster Headaches with Oxygen Therapy

One of the Oldest, Cheapest, and Most Effective Cluster Headache TreatmentsIt’s funny how despite all the progress that has been made in medicine, one of the most effective and cost effective treatments for clusters, was first written about in 1939. As good as it is, as new drugs were developed, this treatment seems to have fallen by the wayside. What is this treatment? Keep reading to discover one of the simplest and oldest ways to gain relief from cluster headaches. Oxygen treatment has been proven to get rid of cluster headaches in a number of patients, dating all the way back to the 1930s. A doctor at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN discovered that treating a headache sufferer with 100% pure oxygen at a flow of six to eight liters per minute would make the headache go away. Research has proven that the sooner oxygen therapy is started the more effective it is. In one study, fifty two patients that suffered from
cluster headaches were treated with 100% oxygen at seven liters per minute. Out of these patients, 75% of them claimed to have complete or almost complete relief of headache pain withinfifteen minutes. Researchers are not entirely sure how oxygen works to reduce headache pain. But it is thought that with cluster headaches, there is an increased blood flow to the brain. Oxygen can cause a significant decrease in cerebral blood flow, which can give relief from a cluster headache. Oxygen therapy today is given at 8 – 10 liter via oxygen inhalation mask. It can be repeated up to five times per day and has been proven
successful through modern studies to be effective in the treatment of cluster headaches, especially nocturnal cluster headaches. Combining oxygen with ergotamine is even more effective. Side effects from oxygen are rare, but they are possible. It is important to remember that if you are a smoker, you must never smoke when oxygen is being used. Oxygen at this high concentration is highly combustible. You must also be careful if you suffer from any type of lung disease, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. High levels of oxygen given to a person that has COPD can be especially dangerous, because it can cause the patient to build up carbon dioxide in his or her system.

High levels of CO2 will cause drowsiness, confusion and eventually can shut the respiratory drive system down. If the high levels of CO2 are left untreated, it can be fatal.The next time you get a cluster headache, ask your doctor about treating it with high levels of oxygen. If it works for you, then you
may have found a way to cure your headache without the use of drugs.

Verapamil and the Treatment of Cluster Headaches

Is Verapamil Right for Your Clusters? There are specific medications that are used as a first line of defense against cluster headaches. One of these medications is Verapamil. Keep reading to uncover some useful information on this drug and how it can  help your cluster headaches. Verapamil comes from a class of medication called a calcium channel blocker. It is commonly used to treat high blood pressure and angina. It is also used to control irregular heart beats in some patients. Verapamil works by
relaxing the veins and the arteries in the body. If the blood vessels are more relaxed, the heart does not have to work as hard to pump the blood through them. The mechanism by which Verapamil works on cluster headaches is not completely understood, but doctors have had great success using this drug to prevent cluster headaches. Verapamil is the generic name for this drug. The brand names for Verapamil are:*Calan*Calan SR*Covera-HS*Isoptin*Isoptin-SR*Verelan*Verelan PMBefore you start taking Verapamil, tell your doctor if you have kidney or liver disease, any heart related condition or muscular dystrophy. You may not be able to take Verapamil if you have any of these conditions.
If you are able to take the drug, the dosage may need to be adjusted for your particular medical condition. The following is a list of side effects that could result from taking Verapamil or any of
the other brand names listed above. Notify your doctor immediately if you have any of the side effects. *Difficulty breathing, swelling of the lips, tongue or throat.*Fainting*An unusually slow heart rate*An unusually fast heart rate*Swelling in your legs or ankles*Yellowing of the eyes or skin*Abnormal behaviorThe most commonly reported side effect from taking Verapamil is constipation. Be sure to increase your water and fiber intake. Take the drug exactly as prescribed by the doctor. An important point to remember about Verapamil and the other brand name calcium channel blockers is that you must avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice. Grapefruit products have been known to interact with calcium channel blockers and sometimes cause potentially dangerous side effects. You should also avoid the use of alcohol while taking Verapamil. Alcohol along with the Verapamil can lower your blood pressure resulting in dizziness and possibly fainting. Talk with your doctor about using Verapamil for your cluster headaches. If he thinks it is right for you, it could mean the end of your excruciating headaches.


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