Head throbbing is a pulsating, pounding or even an explosive sensation in the head commonly associated with migraine headaches. While a throbbing headache is commonly a symptom of migraine, not all throbbing headaches are migraines in general. Head throbbing is usually rhythmic in nature and you can predict how the head throbs. In some individuals, they can even count the throbs that they feel because the throbbing tends to be felt very vividly, as your Tampa chiropractor hears from many patients.

Common Causes of Head Throbbing

Throbbing headaches are very common and most individuals may have experienced it one way or another as a result of various conditions including:

  • Migraine

As discussed, head throbbing is a common symptom of migraine. It is a common type of headache experienced by people who are constantly under stress. Head throbbing is also associated with gastrointestinal upsets such as nausea and vomiting. If you feel these symptoms, chances are, you may be suffering from a migraine headache.

  • Caffeine withdrawal

Another reason for head throbbing is caffeine withdrawal. Caffeine is a CNS stimulant and stimulates more blood flow to the brain. When caffeine is removed from the system in those who take it excessively, caffeine withdrawal may occur and one symptom can be head throbbing.

  • Hangover

Hangovers can also lead to head throbbing similar to the effects of caffeine withdrawal. The presence of circulating alcohol in the body may eventually lead to dilation of the blood vessels in the head causing a disruption in the arterial and venous circulation in the head.

  • Stress

If you do not suffer from the above conditions and you suddenly felt head throbbing, you may be experiencing a high stress level.

  • Sinusitis

Inflammation of the sinuses may also cause headaches that are throbbing in nature because of the spasms of the muscles in the head.

These causes are usually non-emergent and they may be managed using relaxation and minor remedies. Migraines in particular may require an ongoing treatment to prevent reoccurrence.

Serious Causes of Head Throbbing

In rare instances, head throbbing may also be caused by a number of emergent conditions including:

  • Head tumor

A tumor in the brain can alter the cerebral blood flow leading to head throbbing that may be associated with severe pain, reduced level of consciousness and loss of reflexes.

  • Stroke

Stroke may produce sudden throbbing in the head with resultant weakness of the extremities, slurred speech and even altered level of consciousness.

  • Meningitis

Any infection in the head such as meningitis is another serious cause of head throbbing. With meningitis or any other infection and inflammation in the cranium, the blood circulation can also be affected leading to a feeling of throbbing in the head.

When you feel head throbbing along with other neurologic symptoms such as disorientation, confusion, neck stiffness, or poor balance, it would be best to seek emergency help since it may be a sign of an ongoing serious condition requiring immediate  diagnosis and management.

It should be noted that head throbbing may be a common condition, but monitoring other signs and symptoms is still essential as it may also be due to something more serious.