CVS headache


Headaches are a common condition experienced by almost everyone at some point in their lives. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around 50% of adults globally experience a headache in any given year. Headaches can vary in intensity, duration, and frequency, and can be caused by a wide range of factors. Understanding the causes, symptoms, and treatment options of headaches can help individuals manage this condition better and improve their overall quality of life.

decoding headache

Types of Headaches

There are several types of headaches, but the most common ones are tension headaches, migraines, and cluster headaches.

Tension headaches: Tension headaches are the most common type of headache, and they are often described as a tight band around the head. They can be caused by stress, anxiety, poor posture, and tension in the neck and shoulders.

Migraines: Migraines are more severe and can be debilitating. They are often accompanied by other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light and sound, and aura (visual disturbances). Migraines can last for hours or even days and can be triggered by various factors, such as stress, certain foods, hormonal changes, and environmental changes.

Cluster headaches: Cluster headaches are a rare type of headache that usually affect men more than women. They are characterized by severe burning or piercing pain on one side of the head, typically around the eye. Cluster headaches occur in clusters, with each episode lasting between 15 minutes to three hours, and can occur several times a day for several weeks or months.

Causes of Headaches

The causes of headaches can vary widely and depend on the type of headache. Some of the common causes of headaches are:

  1. Tension and stress: Tension headaches are often caused by stress and tension in the neck and shoulders.
  2. Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes during menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause can trigger migraines.
  3. Certain foods: Certain foods like cheese, chocolate, caffeine, and alcohol can trigger migraines.
  4. Environmental changes: Changes in weather, altitude, and barometric pressure can trigger migraines.
  5. Poor sleep: Lack of sleep or poor quality sleep can lead to headaches.
  6. Illness and infections: Illnesses like the flu, sinus infections, and strep throat can cause headaches.

Symptoms of Headaches

The symptoms of headaches can vary depending on the type of headache. The most common symptoms of headaches are:

  1. Dull, aching pain in the head
  2. Tightness or pressure around the head
  3. Sensitivity to light and sound
  4. Nausea and vomiting
  5. Visual disturbances, such as aura
  6. Burning or piercing pain on one side of the head

Treatment Options for Headaches

The treatment options for headaches depend on the type and severity of the headache. Here are some common treatment options for headaches:

  1. Over-the-counter pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, aspirin, and acetaminophen can be effective in treating mild to moderate headaches.
  2. Prescription medication: For more severe headaches, prescription medications like triptans or ergotamines may be prescribed.
  3. Lifestyle changes: Making healthy lifestyle changes like reducing stress, getting enough sleep, and avoiding triggers like certain foods and environmental changes can help prevent headaches.
  4. Alternative therapies: Alternative therapies like acupuncture, massage, and yoga can help alleviate tension and stress, which can cause tension headaches.
  5. Botox: Botox injections can be used to prevent migraines in people who suffer from chronic migraines.
  6. Surgery: In rare cases, surgery may be recommended for people who suffer from severe, chronic headaches that do not respond to other treatments.

Preventing Headaches

Headaches are a common condition that can be caused by a variety of factors, including stress, lack of sleep, poor posture, and dehydration. While there are various treatment options available for headaches, it’s always better to prevent them from occurring in the first place. Here are some tips for preventing headaches:

  1. Stay hydrated: Dehydration is one of the most common causes of headaches. It’s important to drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated, especially if you’re exercising or spending time outdoors in the heat.
  2. Get enough sleep: Lack of sleep or poor quality sleep can lead to headaches. It’s important to establish a regular sleep routine and get seven to nine hours of sleep each night.
  3. Manage stress: Stress is a common trigger for headaches. There are various techniques you can use to manage stress, such as deep breathing, meditation, yoga, and exercise.
  4. Maintain good posture: Poor posture can put a strain on the neck and shoulders, leading to tension headaches. It’s important to maintain good posture when sitting or standing for long periods of time.
  5. Avoid triggers: Certain foods, environmental changes, and activities can trigger headaches in some people. It’s important to identify your triggers and avoid them whenever possible.
  6. Exercise regularly: Regular exercise can help reduce stress, improve sleep, and promote overall health. Aim to get at least 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.
  7. Eat a balanced diet: Eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein can help prevent headaches. Avoid skipping meals, as this can also lead to headaches.
  8. Limit caffeine and alcohol: Caffeine and alcohol can both trigger headaches in some people. It’s important to limit your consumption of these substances if you’re prone to headaches.
  9. Take breaks from screens: Spending too much time staring at a computer, phone, or television screen can strain your eyes and lead to headaches. It’s important to take regular breaks and give your eyes a rest.
  10. Consider supplements: Some supplements, such as magnesium, riboflavin, and coenzyme Q10, may help prevent migraines in some people. Talk to your healthcare provider before taking any supplements.

If you experience frequent headaches despite making lifestyle changes, it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider to rule out any underlying medical conditions. With proper prevention and management, headaches can be minimized, allowing you to enjoy a better quality of life. However, there is a new kid on the block for headaches and a very important one is “Computer Vision Syndrome(CVS)” or “Digital Eye Strain”. It’s a persistent headache.

What is digital eye strain?

The term “digital eye strain” or “computer vision syndrome” may be a relatively new term, but the concept of eye strain caused by screen use has been around since the advent of computers. In fact, the American Optometric Association first identified the symptoms of computer vision syndrome in the 1990s, and it has been a growing concern ever since.

With the proliferation of smartphones, tablets, and other digital devices, screen time has increased exponentially in recent years, leading to a greater incidence of digital eye strain. This is why the condition has become more widely recognized and discussed in the past decade, leading to the coining of the term “Digital Eye Strain” to describe the symptoms associated with prolonged screen use.

The symptoms of digital eye strain include headaches, eye fatigue, dry eyes, blurred vision, neck and shoulder pain, and difficulty focusing. These symptoms can be caused by the blue light emitted by screens, poor lighting, glare, and poor posture. While digital eye strain is not a serious medical condition, it can be uncomfortable and can affect productivity, so it’s important to take steps to prevent or manage symptoms.

Some ways to prevent digital eye strain include taking regular breaks, adjusting screen brightness and contrast, reducing glare, and using the 20-20-20 rule, which involves looking away from the screen every 20 minutes and focusing on an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds.

Overall, while the term “digital eye strain” may be new, the concept of eye strain caused by screens has been a concern for several decades, and it has become increasingly relevant as screen time has increased.

Screen headaches, also known as digital eye strain, are becoming increasingly common as people spend more time in front of screens. According to the latest survey conducted by The Vision Council, 80% of adults reported using digital devices for over two hours everyday, and nearly 67 percent say they use two or more devices concurrently that exacerbates the situation.

While screen headaches are not a formal medical diagnosis, they are a common complaint among people who spend a lot of time in front of screens. The symptoms of screen headaches can range from mild discomfort to more severe pain, and they can be associated with tension headaches or migraines.

It’s important to note that not everyone who uses screens will experience headaches, and the frequency and severity of symptoms can vary widely between individuals. However, as screen use continues to be a pervasive part of modern life, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks and to take steps to prevent or manage symptoms of digital eye strain, including headaches.

Why is spending too much time on the screen bad for people with headaches?

Spending too much time in front of a screen, such as a computer, phone, or television, can contribute to headaches and migraines. This is because screens emit blue light, which can disrupt the body’s natural sleep-wake cycle and cause eye strain. In addition, prolonged use of screens can lead to poor posture, neck, and shoulder strain, and increased stress levels, which can all contribute to headaches.

One way that screens can cause headaches is through the disruption of the body’s circadian rhythm. The blue light emitted by screens can suppress the production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep. This can lead to difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, which can cause fatigue and headaches. Studies have shown that people who use screens before bed are more likely to experience headaches and migraines than those who avoid screens in the hours leading up to bedtime.

Another way that screens can cause headaches is through eye strain. When staring at a screen for a prolonged period of time, the eyes can become fatigued and dry, leading to eye strain and discomfort. This can contribute to tension headaches, which are characterized by a dull, aching pain that can radiate from the neck and shoulders up to the forehead.

Poor posture is also a common contributor to headaches and migraines. When using a screen, it’s common to hunch forward, which can strain the neck and shoulders. This can lead to tension headaches, which are often described as a band-like sensation around the head.

Lastly, screens can contribute to stress and anxiety, which can trigger migraines in some people. Social media and news websites can be particularly stressful, and the constant barrage of notifications and messages can contribute to feelings of overwhelm and anxiety. This can increase the likelihood of experiencing migraines, which are often characterized by a pulsing or throbbing pain on one side of the head.

To prevent headaches and migraines caused by screen time, it’s important to take regular breaks and practice good posture. It’s also important to limit screen time before bed and to use devices with features that filter blue light. Some devices also offer settings that adjust the color temperature of the screen to reduce eye strain. Additionally, it’s important to manage stress through relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing, and yoga.

Overall, while screens have become a ubiquitous part of modern life, it’s important to recognize their potential impact on our health and well-being. By being mindful of our screen use and taking steps to reduce eye strain, poor posture, and stress, we can minimize the risk of headaches and migraines associated with screen time.


Headaches can be of different types. If you have a headache then something is wrong with your physical or emotional health. There are different types of headaches based on intensity, location and occurrence of a headache. The cause of headaches also varies since the mind is the most powerful tool which gets directly affected due to physical or psychological stress. Headaches have different symptoms which can be easily understood by physicians based on their severity and characteristics. Based on that you can get treatment options both for long-term and short-term resolution. However, there is a new type of headache making headlines known as “Computer Vision Syndrome” also known as digital eye strain. I have covered it more since it’s a new headache and can have really bad impacts on IT professionals and teenage students who use screen time for earning or entertainment. 

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