While some headaches can be severe or even debilitating, most headaches would be more accurately described as irritating or annoying. It is generally fine to manage mild or moderate headaches with simple remedies that you have at home or that you can easily obtain. Simple treatments for routine headaches work quickly and produce few or no side effects. However, if a headache is severe, if simple remedies do not work, if the headache is not your typical headache or if you experience any neurological symptoms, you should get evaluated by a medical professional.
Sleep is one of the most effective and simple headache remedies. Getting restful sleep can completely resolve the pain of a mild to moderate headache.
Over the counter pain medications
There are a number of pain medications that are useful for treating headaches. These include ibuprofen (Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), and aspirin. The vast majority of regular headaches improve with one or two doses of regular strength over the counter pain medications. These may come in pill, tablet or capsule form and are generally easy to take with water. While these remedies do not require a prescription, they must be taken as directed.
Aspirin is an anti-inflammatory drug and painkiller that can reduce headache pain. Aspirin is also a blood thinner and may cause bleeding, stomach ulcers and a number of other side effects. Aspirin, in particular, is not recommended for children with fevers because of the risk of Reyes Syndrome. Ibuprofen is a commonly used pain killer with anti-inflammatory properties and it is effective for controlling most headaches. High doses of ibuprofen can cause stomach upset or bleed, but some people experience these side effects when using the recommended doses. Acetaminophen, which is effective for most types of mild pain, including headaches, may cause liver toxicity if taken excessively.
Also Read: Headaches: Causes, Types And Treatments