The World of Primary Headaches: What is A New Daily Persistent Headache?
This headache classification confuses even the top docs
Migraineurs aren’t the only ones suffering from chronic headaches. Doctors have coined a term to describe a condition known to strike people with no history of migraines. The term is new daily persistent headache, and it mimics migraines in a lot of ways.
New Daily Persistent Headaches
New Daily Persistent Headaches (NDPH), is a condition that causes chronic headaches that can last for up to three months. The headaches give no warning signs can and attack at any given moment. Patients complain of constant head pain with NDPH, and victims can sometimes experience symptoms similar to migraines such as:
- Sensitivity to light
- Throbbing pain
Unlike a traditional migraine, NDPH doesn’t have a pre-phase. Most migraineurs can tell when a headache will attack because they experience physiological symptoms hours or days before the episode. Difficult bowel movements and general muscular discomfort are early signs of a migraine attack.
NDPH sufferers might also have some of these symptoms during their headache. Often, sufferers can remember the day the headache strikes, along with what they were doing.That’s not surprising since the pain is traumatic.
This kind of head pain starts as a throbbing sensation at the sides of the headand sometimes turns into a whirlwind headache. Pain intensity alternates between throbbing and pressing sensations. You may start to feel lightheaded as the pain persists for hours. It’s no wonder most people can remember when and where it strikes.
Primary Headache Disorders
NDPH is part of a group of headaches that wreak havoc on people’s lives. You may be familiar with some of these ailments, but others may be new to you. They are:
- Chronic migraine– Fifteen or more headaches per month. Usually, migraineurs experience sensitivity to light/sound, nausea, and vomiting with migraine attacks. Food and other stimulants can trigger migraines.
- Chronic tension headache– Chronic headaches that occur more than fifteen times a month for more than three months. Pain is concentratedin the forehead. Headaches can last for an entire week.
- Hemicrania continua– These headaches produce concentrated pain that can last for a few days. Typically, the disorder affects women and causes watery eyes, runny nose, and nasal blockages.
There are a few neurological disorders that lead to headaches. Two of the most common conditions are spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid and cerebral venous sinus thrombosis. Both are caused by fluid buildup around the spine.
Like migraines, NDPH doesn’t have a cure. The headache’s causes and triggers still mystify researchers. To treat the disorder, you will need to follow a tailored and complementary plan that has shown to work for migraines or tension headaches. However, your body is different from everyone else’s, so you’ll want to narrow down possible treatment optionsthat are specific to you. Here are a few tips:
- Start a headache or migraine journal. Include dates, times, what you were doing, what you ate, etc.
- Knowledge is power. Research the migraine field. Start with food, stress, and sleep as triggers. Those are the biggest culprits.
- Next topics would be biomechanical (have you suffered whiplash?), genetics, and hormones.
- Talk to your doctor. Do they blow you off, or are they ready to hit the ground running and figure out the issue with you?
Throughout your research, you’ll find some viable options on where to begin. Make sure you have the right doctor by your side through the process.
Diet and lifestyle is usually the first line of treatment. An elimination diet often works well for migraineurs, and it may be just what you need to combat NDPH.
NDPH symptoms that resemble tension headache symptoms require a different approach. Ultimately, it’s up to you and your doctor to pinpoint your triggers and find a plan that works for you.
- NDPH: What is This-American Migraine Foundation
- Types of Migraine-Migraine Trust
- Chronic Tension Headache
- Other Headache Disorders-Migraine Trust
- Finding Dr. Right-3 Tips for Migraineurs
- The Elimination Diet Chronicles Part I