Can Headaches Be Disabling?

I am certain that most people experience headaches occasionally. These types of headaches most often go away within an hour […]

I am certain that most people experience headaches occasionally. These types of headaches most often go away within an hour or so. Unfortunately, there are other kinds of headaches such as migraines, allergy head-aches and stress headaches, which can be disabling. When I say disabling, I mean that the individual experiencing the headache may be unable to function in everyday life activities.

For example, I have a friend who lives with headaches on a day-to-day basis. When the headaches come on, she is unable to work or involve herself in social activities. The only thing she can do is take medication and sleep off the headache, which prevents her from fully functioning during these times.

One way that she can prevent the headaches from disabling her is by taking medicine when she begins experiencing an aura. When the aura occurs she gets a flash of light in her eyes. If she catches the aura before the headache progresses, then she is able to continue functioning in daily life activities.

Depending upon how one defines disability depends on how one considers a headache disabling. Headaches are not something that can be seen directly, rather they are a hidden disability. People who have visible disabilities can also experience headaches. Therefore, they become doubly disabled. Fortunately headaches are not a permanent disability. When the headache goes away they are back to square one with their disability.

The National Foundation of Headaches has a chart which can be viewed at: www.headaches.org/consumer/topicsheets/chart.html. This chart is very descriptive and can provide the reader with information according to the headings listed below:

(a) Type
(b) Symptoms
(c) Precipitating Factors
(d) Treatment
(e) Prevention

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