Cluster Headache


Overview

Headaches that occur in patterns or clusters with bouts of frequent attacks are known as Cluster Headache. It can last from weeks to months, usually followed by remission periods when the headaches stop. During remission, no headaches occur for months and sometimes even years.

Symptoms

  • Pain is severe on one side of the head
  • Excruciating pain that is generally situated in, behind or around one eye, but may radiate to other areas of your face, head and neck.
  • Pale skin (pallor) or flushing on your face
  • A stuffy or runny nose
  • Forehead or facial sweating on the affected side
  • Drooping eyelid on the affected side
  • Swelling around your eye on the affected side
  • Restlessness
  • Loss of sleep
  • redness or tearing up of the eyes

According to Ayurveda,  three metabolic elements are present in our body. These are called Vata, Pitta and Kapha which can affect the body functions when imbalanced. Cluster headaches mainly occur due to the imbalance of vata and pitta.

Causes

Exact cause of cluster headaches is unknown.

Predisposing factors.-

Eg:

  • Irregular sleeping habit
  • Late night sleep
  • Cold food
  • Spicy ,salty ,alkaline food
  • Sour food
  • fried foods
  • Stress
  • Lack of sleep

 If these things are done over a long period of time they trigger cluster headaches.

Treatment

Treatment protocol aims at:

  1. Relief from Headache
  2. Prevent the complications associated with cluster headache
  3. Preventing recurrence by revitalizing the nervous system

The first line of treatment should always be avoiding the causative factors. If the problem persists then consider the following treatment protocol

Severe one sided pain in head - In cluster headaches a specific nerve pathway in the base of the brain is activated, signal coming from hypothalamus where the "internal biological clock" that controls your sleep and wake cycles lives.

The trigeminal nerve which is affected is responsible for sensations such as heat or pain in your face. It is near your eye and it branches up to your forehead, across your cheek, down your jaw line, and above your ear on the same side also resulting in Drooping eyelid, Redness and tearing up of the eye and swelling around the eye

  • Headache with severe pain like excruciating and one sided pain - Eranda helps to reduce the pain and controls vata. Kamadudha, Mauktik bhasma is a classical Ayurvedic preparation which is helped in reducing neurovascular pain by its antioxidant properties
  • Reduce stress and provide good sleep - Ashwagandha, Jatamansi, Tagara, Brahmi, Shatavari - also it pacifies vata, pitta and causes soothing of the nervous system reducing the trigger periods.
  • Cure stuffy or runny noses - Bibhitaki
  • Redness and tearing up of eyes - Amalaki, Godanti and formulations like Kamadudha and Laghusootshekhar ras

(The above mentioned Ayurvedic drugs are Herbs and Herbomineral preparations)

Other Therapies:  Shirodhara, Shiro vasti, Thalapothichil/Shiro Lepa, Nasya, virechana/Purgation therapy (cleaning digestive tract and purifying blood).

Herbs

Kamadudha, Mauktik bhasma, Eranda, Ashwagandha, Jatamansi, Tagara, Brahmi, Shatavari , Bibhitaki, Amalaki, Godanti , Laghusootshekhar ras

 


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