Can Headache Medication CAUSE Headaches?

By Dr. Brandon Siegmund

October 9, 2017

It’s a safe to say that the most common method of treating headaches in America is with over-the-counter pain relievers like Advil, Tylenol, Aleve, Ibuprofen and Motrin. But surpisingly a recent survery showed results that a surprising number of people with chronic headaches may actually be making their problems worse by taking these headache-relieving medications too often and for too long.

“Rebound” or “withdrawal” headaches can arise when using these medeciations too frequently, and have now earned their own classification as Medication Overuse Headaches or also known as a MOH.

Among the respondents who qualified for participation in the survey, 44% were suffering from “chronic tension-type headaches” who overused medications and experienced a MOH. Among respondents suffering from “chronic migraines,” 82% experienced a MOH.

MOHs are often described as having mixed characteristics of a migraine and a tension-type headache and causes pain on both sides of the head. These headaches often come about upon waking in the morning. The sensations felt are typically throbbing, pounding or pulsating.

It’s quite possible that if you have some degree of headache all day, every day, and suffer from 15 or more headaches per month, you could be experincing Medication Overuse Headaches.

I’ve always said that the healthiest people I know don’t have to take any medications, and that the sickest people I know do. Hardly prophetic, but a lot of people in this country ignore the fact that having to depend on medication for any reason is a problem. I’m amazed at how many people use the phrase “normal headache” in conversation.

The cold hard truth is that headaches aren’t normal. They are warning signs from your body, and it’s a way of telling you, “Hey, maybe something’s not right. You either did something to me that you shouldn’t have, or something’s going wrong in here and you need to go get help.”

This is yet another example of how important it is to identify the cause of your health problems, and not just treat the effects.

Am I suggesting that every health problem in existence can be fixed naturally by a chiropractor? Of course not; But the results of this study demonstrate that medicinal remedies are not always the smartest way to go about treating your headaches; even the best of intentions can be completely wrong for your system.

If you or someone that you know is experiencing frequent headaches and have developed a need to take frequent doses of Advil to treat your ailments then it’s time to seek the help of a chiropractor. A through exam will allow us to find the underlying cause of your headaches and restore your body to it’s natural, healthy and optimal state.

Dr. Brandon Siegmund

About the author

Dr. Brandon Siegmund was born and raised outside of Fort Worth. After he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2006, Dr. Siegmund performed clinical research at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Click Here To Read Full Bio

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