Headaches attributed to psychiatric disorders


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Headaches attributed to psychiatric disorders often have the characteristics of a migraine, tension headache or a cluster headache. Pre-existing, primary headaches, usually deteriorate due to temporary mental illness, and can be differentiated into two possibilities:

  • the patient is subjected to the diagnosis only in connection with a headache, which then turns out to be related to a mental disorder
  • with the advent of psychiatric disorders appear a problem.

Headaches attributed to psychiatric disordersTo be considered a problem as part of the diagnosis of mental illness, it is imperative that strict timing relationship of both problems. As a result of the disorder must be followed by the deterioration of real pains, as in the case of improvement, they are inferior to the psychological problems.

Headaches attributed to psychiatric disorder often are not easy to diagnose, but after their establishment, they usually disappear after a certain time, or the patient’s condition improves after effective treatment or spontaneous remission of mental disorders.

Diagnosis headaches attributed to psychiatric disorders

Chronic headaches, persistent after the resignation of mental illness have not yet been fully described.

However, there is limited evidence of the cause of psychiatric manifested by problems. It can be shown rare cases in which there are headaches within the context of mental illness. The vast majority of problems that occur in connection with mental disorders are not causally related, but in return, provide an underlying disease – probably they have the common biological substrate.

The pains are reported as the concomitant symptom of many psychiatric disorders, including major depressive disorder, dynamic disturbances, panic disorders, anxiety general, somatoform disorders, as well as, disorders of regulation. In these cases, both a primary diagnosis of a headache and comorbid psychiatric diagnosis should be made.Brain_picture

In some cases, however, the pain occurs only among common mental disorders as depression, panic disorder or anxiety, is most correctly assign to them.

According to research, the presence of comorbid psychiatric disorders tends to deteriorate the course of a migraine and / or tension-type headaches. The pains increased frequency and severity and their treatment are more difficult.

It is crucial to identify and treat coexisting with a headache mental disorder, as this will help control pain.

In children and adolescents, primary headache disorders (such as a migraine, episodic tension-type) often coexist with mental health problems as:

  • sleep disturbances
  • anxiety disorders,
  • phobias,
  • adjustment disorder,
  • other disorders diagnosed in infancy, childhood, or adolescence as hyperactivity, problems with concentration, behavioral problems, learning problems, bed-wetting, etc.What is a disease

It is important to determine whether the headaches should be attributed to mental disorder because mental illness can have a significant impact on the way of pain perception.

The treatment of headaches attributed to psychiatric disorders

Depending, of which disease is related to a problem, pharmacological treatment with painkillers or other medications may be appropriate, or on the contrary – it can harm the treatment of psychological problems. Also, people suffering from depression or anxiety, often have a tendency to abuse drugs, that may be dangerous for them.

As an alternative treatment are also used introducing of physical activity, relaxation training, and exercise. Often, however, both methods are combined.

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