Headache is a common complaint in children, however it’s usually moderate and rarely serious. However, frequent headaches may affect children’s behavior and make them unable to perform everyday activities.

One-in-five American students is prone to suffer from headaches. Prior to it is puberty headaches tend to be more frequent for boys. After puberty, they become more frequent among girls.

Headaches can cause anxiety for children and create anxiety for family members or parents. However, the majority of headaches aren’t severe and usually are gone in a couple of hours. A mere 5% or less of headaches are caused by extreme ailments.

This article focuses on headaches for children. It also explains the signs and the best time to speak with a physician.

Children and adults typically suffer the same types of headaches however, they might have different experiences.

The International Headache Society (IHS) defines headaches in two categories: both primary and second. Primary headaches are not known to reason, while secondary headaches are caused by a different condition.

Primary headaches are responsible for 21.8-66.3 percent of headaches among children who are treated in the emergency department. Below, we review the most common primary headaches among children.

Tension headache

The most prevalent kind of headache that children suffer from. It’s usually mild and is caused by the muscles of the scalp and neck are strained due to stress or anxiety. The symptoms include:

  • A dull, pressure-like ache
  • discomfort that can get worse on the temples, scalp shoulder and back of the neck.
  • the head. Pain that is felt throughout the head
  • discomfort that can get worse with stress, glareor noise and fatigue



1 out of 10 children

suffer from recurring headaches caused by migraine. This is not as common as tension headache , but it is more intense. It is more likely to occur again it, last, and even run in families.

The symptoms of migraine are:

  • Pulsating or throbbing pain on the one face, or both sides, but on one side that is more painful
  • discomfort that increases with exercise
  • nausea and vomiting
  • visual disturbances
  • irritability
  • crying
  • insanity
  • The agitation
  • Abdominal discomfort

Cluster headache

Cluster headaches are


in children less than 10, and in males are

3 times more likely

more susceptible to being affected more than females are more likely to be affected than. The headaches are characterized by frequent attacks of pain which affect either side of your head. and behind the eye. They can last for several days.

15 to 180 minutes

and could occur as often as eight times a day.

Other symptoms are:

The precise cause of migraine and tension headaches in children is not known however, health professionals believe that it is due to changes in brain chemical and the alteration of nerves and blood vessels. These changes can trigger symptoms of pain that can lead to headaches.

Utilizing digital devices for extended durations can make headaches worse perhaps due to the brightness of the screen or posture issues. A

2021 study

The study found that limiting screen time could be crucial in reducing headaches.

The IHS provides a long list of ailments that can trigger headaches. The head and neck injuries, infections and mouth problems or ear, eye and nose may cause headaches.

Other causes that could cause headaches may include:

  • dehydration
  • skip meals
  • too much or not enough sleep
  • Changes in sleeping patterns of sleep
  • Certain medications
  • hormonal changes, for example, menstrual cycles
  • smoking
  • strong odors
  • Sound and light disturbances
  • certain beverages and foods such as chocolates, alcohol and coffee

In rare instances children may suffer headaches due to an medical condition, for example:

It is imperative to immediately transport children to the emergency department if they experience headaches. is the result of a head injury, or if the following signs are appear:

  • loss of muscle coordination sometimes referred to as ataxia
  • seizures
  • stiff neck
  • visual irregularities
  • confusion
  • being less alert, or very tired or sleepy
  • persistent vomiting
  • high fever
  • Atypical blood pressure, breathing or heart rate
  • Speech slurred
  • Tingling or numbness

Furthermore, a person must

consult a doctor

If you experience headaches:

  • It happens more than once in a week
  • It returns or worsens
  • It is more severe when you wake up
  • interferes with a child’s ability to perform routine activities at school, home as well as in other settings.

A child’s physician will want their

Medical background

They will probably and will likely to ask to know more regarding the headaches to find out what might be causing the headaches. They might ask questions about:

  • the degree and frequency of headaches
  • at the time the headaches first started
  • Any observable pattern or triggers
  • A child’s diet, routines and sleeping habits
  • medication, allergies, and any other medical issues
  • Any family background of headaches
  • Any recent injuries or falls

They could also be looking for triggers that could be triggering the problem and request that a person keep a headache journal in which they or their child can keep track of events, frequency, and degree of headaches.

Healthcare professionals or doctors will perform a physical exam as well as an examination of the neurological system to look whether there are any issues in a child’s senses or movement as well as coordination. They may also recommend testing for blood or imaging like a CAT and MRI scan. If a child has seizures, the physician may be able to request an EEG.

If other signs are being reported, the child’s doctor could also recommend a consult with other specialists like pediatric neurologists, eye doctors, psychologists, or ear throat, and nose specialists.

The treatment for headaches is dependent on the root of the problem. Modifying elements, like exercise, diet, sleeping patterns, as well as trying to avoid triggers could assist.

If headaches occur with no other signs then it’s a simply


can include:

  • sitting down in a cool, peaceful room
  • Relaxation and breathing exercises
  • Applying a cold or warm compress on the forehead

Treatment of tension headaches in children

For tension headaches relaxing at home, taking napping, eating healthy meals, as well as over-the counter (OTC) pain relief may aid a child in overcoming their symptoms.

Parents and caregivers should restrict the use of OTC medicine to no more than

Three times

each week to avoid each week to prevent overuse headaches and or rebound headaches.

Doctors can also suggest non-medicated treatment options to treat headaches that cause tension headaches or migraine. They include:

The treatment of migraine in children

Doctors could

prescribe medication

to children suffering from children who experience frequent migraine attacks. These medicines are divided into two groups:

The majority of headaches that children suffer from are self-limiting , and they disappear when they get enough rest or take homemade solutions. Certain children are able to overcome headaches however, they could be recur later in life, and some may persist into adulthood.

A proper education, lifestyle adjustments as well as avoiding triggers and constant communication with a doctor or healthcare professional can assist children who suffer from chronic headaches to go on with their normal activities.