Around half of all adults around the globe suffer from headaches. Some headaches are minor and may be treated at home, while others are more serious and require medical attention.
Seek medical help if your headache is accompanied by blurred vision, nausea, or another symptom that makes you nervous. A person who develops a sudden, severe headache, weakness solely on a single side of the body, or disorientation needs immediate medical attention.
Overview of Types
Migraine or cluster headaches are two types of headaches that can induce discomfort on the left side. We go over each one in-depth below.
Headaches are classified as 'primary' or 'secondary' by doctors. The pain is the most prominent symptom of a primary headache. A secondary headache is caused by another medical condition, such as:
- a malignant brain tumor
- a stroke
- a contamination
The resulting headaches might occur everywhere, especially on the left side.
Headaches caused by the cervix
An injury to the neck, such as trauma, arthritis, or other alterations in the vertebrae near the top of the spine, can cause this form of headache.
It can lead to:
- On one side, moderate to severe discomfort begins in the neck and travels to the eyes and face.
- limited range of motion and a tight neck
- aches and pains in the eyes, neck, shoulders, and arms
- eyesight problems
- light and sound sensitivity
Pain can be managed with steroid injections with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen (Advil). Cervicogenic headaches should go away in three months with therapy, however, they may return.
The pain and other symptoms may be cyclical, with flare-ups occurring at different times for different people.
Vasculitis is a type of blood vessel inflammation caused by an autoimmune response in which the body reacts as though its blood vessels are toxic things.
Giant cell arteritis, often known as temporal arteritis, is a frequent kind of vasculitis. The capillaries in the head are affected. It mainly affects adults over the age of 50.
Other signs and symptoms include:
- eyesight loss that occurs suddenly
- Headaches on one side or behind the eyes
- chewing discomfort
Anyone who has these symptoms should seek medical attention. If vasculitis is not treated, it might cause irreversible eyesight loss.
When should you see a doctor?
If a person gets a severe or chronic headache, or if the pain is accompanied by other symptoms, they should seek medical help.
Additional manifestations include:
- eyesight problems
- vomiting and nausea
- one part of the body is weak
It's also critical to see a doctor if:
- Just after the age of 50, headaches appear.
- The frequency of headaches has shifted significantly.
- Headaches continue to worsen.
- The person's mental capacity or personality has changed.
- A punch to the head causes headaches.
- Headaches make it difficult to get through the day.
Anyone experiencing a severe, abrupt headache should seek emergency medical attention since this might indicate a stroke or aneurysm.
Prevention and treatment
A headache may often be treated with over-the-counter medicines and rest.
When feasible, take the following steps to avoid certain types of headaches:
- Managing or avoiding stress
- having a consistent sleeping schedule
- avoidance of well-known triggers
- For extreme pain, a doctor may prescribe stronger pain relievers.
Migraine, vasculitis, cluster headaches, and other forms of headaches can cause a headache on the left side.
A headache may often be treated at home with over-the-counter medications and relaxation. Contact a healthcare expert if your headaches are severe, persistent, or otherwise alarming.
Anyone experiencing a sudden, severe headache, weakness on one side of the body, or disorientation should seek immediate medical attention.