Treatments for Headaches

Although all headaches create pain, they can be vastly different in frequency, severity and cause. At Swedish Pain Services, we pinpoint a patient's individual condition and need, then prescribe a course of treatment based on the latest research, and, where appropriate, the newest medications and interventional therapies.

We also consider the risk of coexisting medical conditions like anxiety, heart disease or depression. An individual treatment program might include:

  • Acute medications that are used to treat a headache once it has begun
  • Medications and nerve blocks (including Botox®) that can prevent a headache attack or reduce its severity
  • Physical therapy, which helps prevent headaches in some patients
  • Biofeedback therapy, which can help reduce muscle tension -- one of the symptoms associated with headaches
  • Trigger-point injections that relax muscle tightness that may contribute to headache pain
  • Rhizotomy, which uses microwave heat to impair a nerve's ability to transmit pain
  • Neurostimulators implanted in the patient to deliver electrical impulses that can block pain signals
  • Psychological counseling, which can help people learn to better manage stress

For many patients, headaches may be an indicator of an overly hectic and stressful life. Eating healthy, regular and balanced meals; exercising regularly; getting the proper amount of sleep; and using a calendar to monitor these lifestyle factors may be beneficial in reducing stress-related headaches.