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Male smiling after being pain free from headache

Headaches are among the most common pain-related conditions people experience regularly. This guide was created to assist in finding the type of headache you have according to your symptoms, and taking proper action against the pain.

Tension Headache >

Tension headaches are the most common, on average affecting about 7 million Australians1.

Migraine Headache

Typically lasting from 4-72 hours, may experience nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light & sound2.

Tension Headache

A tension headache is the most common type of headache.
It typically involves contraction of muscles in the head or neck.

A tension headache is often dull and can still be very persistent.
It can start at the back of the head, at the temples and spread,
sometimes feeling like a band around the head4.


  • Any type of stress
  • Tiredness can also bring on a tension headache
  • Anxiety and/or depression
  • Posture or over use of muscles
  • Environmental effects, such as noise, lights or a hot day
  • Lifestyle – what we eat, drink or if we smoke5

Migraine Headache

Migraines tend to be more painful compared to a tension headache.

Migraines have distinct symptoms including nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, sound and smells. Some migraines can also come with visual disturbances, including tingling and numbness of the limbs6.

These headaches can last for a few hours to a few days (up to 3-4 days).


  • Dehydration & certain foods
  • Lack of food, you may skip a meal for example
  • Hormone changes
  • Environmental effects
  • Insufficient or too much sleep
  • Lifestyle, including exercise7

If you are suffering migraine symptoms, you should talk to your doctor about the best pain management plan for you.