What are tension-type headaches?

Tension headaches are the most common type of headache. Nearly 90% of all adults have had headaches related to tension. A tension headache requires a different treatment than migraines.

Where they start. This headache is caused by muscle contractions around the head or neck and is often linked to stressful situations. Tension headaches can be chronic and may be caused by a poor dental bite or clenching your jaw.

What they feel like. When you have a tension headache, your pain can involve your teeth, forehead, and/or neck. You might describe it as pressure or a tight band around your head and neck. The pain often begins gradually and builds in intensity over hours.

How long they last. Pain from tension headaches is most intense in the afternoon after building up during the day. The pain is usually moderate and disappears after the stress ends.

Who gets them. Although people of all ages get tension headaches, young women get them most frequently.

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