Chronic Daily Headaches: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment and Prevention

It’s perfectly normal for anyone to experience a headache once in a while. But if it’s something that strikes on most days, then it is what doctors are calling chronic daily headaches.

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The name is derived from the fact that they are chronic — they are constantly recurring.

Doctors say that headaches can be regarded as chronic daily headaches if they show up 15 days per month or even more, and also for more than 3 months.

Some chronic daily headaches are short-lasting, which can last for several minutes to a few hours. Then there are also chronic daily headaches that are long-lasting, and they usually last for over 4 hours.

If it seems like you are experiencing headaches very frequently, continue reading.

Below you will learn some of the most important matters about chronic daily headaches — their probable causes, the symptoms they bring, effective treatments for them, and how they can be prevented from bugging you.


Doctors are not really sure as to what truly causes chronic daily headaches, most especially true or primary chronic headaches which do not have any underlying cause that can be identified.

On the other hand, daily chronic headaches that can be associated with an existing health or medical problems are referred to as non-primary chronic daily headaches.

Problems with the blood vessels in the brain or around it are some of the most common causes.

Experts say that non-primary chronic daily headaches can also be due intracranial pressure, which is the amount of pressure in the skull, that’s either very high or very low.

Brain tumor, traumatic brain injury, meningitis — doctors say that these are some other things that can cause non-primary chronic daily headaches.

By the way, there are certain risk factors for chronic daily headaches.

Some of these risk factors include: being a female, anxiety, depression, insomnia or sleep disturbances, being overweight or obese, excessive intake of coffee or other caffeinated beverages, and overuse of painkillers.

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Just like what’s earlier discussed, chronic daily headaches can strike for 15 days a month, sometimes even more. Also, it’s something that shows up for longer than 3 months.

During an attack, it’s possible for only one side of the head to be affected. The pain may range anywhere from mild, moderate to severe, and it can bring about all sorts of sensations, from pressing, pulsating to throbbing.

Aside from the aching of the head, other symptoms may also be experienced.

Some people who experience chronic daily headaches report of sensitivity to light or even sound. It’s possible for the headaches to be accompanied by nausea or vomiting, or both.

Complications of chronic daily headaches include anxiety, depression and insomnia.


Dealing with the pain experienced is the primary goal when treating chronic daily headaches.

In the case of non-primary chronic headaches in which another problem is the root cause, treating the underlying cause is the goal. Once dealt with, non-primary chronic headaches go away on their own.

Other medications may be prescribed, too, aside from painkillers. They include antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs and beta blockers. At times botox injections may also be recommended as it’s proven to be helpful for some.

It’s possible for a combination of drugs to be prescribed by a doctor.

Some people who suffer from chronic daily headaches also opt for alternative treatments such as massages, biofeedback, acupuncture, and supplementing with vitamins, minerals and herbs.


To keep chronic daily headaches at bay, it’s a good idea for the person to make observations so that he or she may be able to identify triggers which have to be avoided.

Stress reduction, getting a good night’s sleep and mild to moderate exercise on a regular basis can help.

It’s important to avoid skipping meals, as well as excessive intake of coffee and other caffeinated drinks. Doctors say that overuse of painkillers should be avoided, too.

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