Last Modified on Jun 18, 2014
What is a Cluster Headache?
Well first, what are headaches? They aren't all the same. "Normal" headache symptoms occur when tissues around the brain (not the brain tissue itself) and neck sense pain, often caused by blood vessel dilation that causes irritation. Then you have migraine headaches that only affect some people, present as a pulsing pain on one side of the head and body at a time, and correlated to serotonin levels; and then closely related are tension headaches that are the result of stress, muscle tension, and keeping your shoulder and neck muscles tight and bunched together. Cluster headaches, on the other hand, are bouts of severe pain that may only occur occasionally but will "cluster" in repeated attacks during the symptomatic stages of a cluster headache cycle, lasting typically 6-12 weeks. The symptoms of this condition are sometimes confused with trigeminal neuralgia pain.
Cluster headache symptoms include intense pain on one side of the head. This pain is often focused right behind the eye. Bouts of headache pain may last for a few minutes to about three hours but will recur frequently until the cluster headache cycle goes into remission, possibly for many months. The symptoms of cluster headache somewhat resemble a chronic sinus infection, and sometimes is misdiagnosed as such.
Holistic Treatment for Cluster Headache Pain
In order to break the cluster headache cycle and reduce the pain of a single cluster headache, an holistic approach to nutrition, anti-inflammatory herbal remedies, and brain health is needed. Apple cider vinegar can help reduce inflammation in general throughout the body. Omega 3 fatty acids are good for the same and for general brain health. Cayenne pepper1, melatonin2, and kudzu extract are other alternative remedies with some signs of promise in reducing the frequency or intensity of pain from cluster headaches. Others find relief in acupuncture for cluster headaches.
3Use of complementary and alternative medicine by patients with cluster headache
My husband has been suffering for 3 to 4 months now with severe sinus headaches. They really don't start on him until after he goes to bed. He has taken a Benadryl before bed and that helps for 3 or 4 hrs. , but after it wears off, the pain wakes him up and he has to get up and take another Benadryl. He's tried a heating pad, elevating his head with a couple of pillows, drinking hot liquids, ACV, eating spicy foods and they help temporarily, but the worse is at night. He wakes up with bags under his eyes and sometimes he's so congested.... Sometimes not. My daughter thought that he possibly had allergies and once we got into cold weather and had several good "frosts" on the ground, his headaches would go away. That's not the case.
I have read all the posts here on EC about sinus issues, but mostly it's contributions about congestion and not the headaches at bedtime. I think he's to the place with hurting that he might listen to me about anything "natural". Lol Any suggestions would be appreciated. "))