1 in 4 patients with an active Covid infection report headaches as one of the symptoms, and unfortunately, these headaches stick around for some people after the illness. An estimated 10% of people with long-haul Covid symptoms experience ongoing headaches, even after recovering from the infection. These headaches can last for months, leaving patients wondering if there is relief from the symptoms.
If you are experiencing headaches after Covid, it’s time to talk to a specialist about available treatment options. Our team specializes in post-Covid care, offering personalized treatment plans to help you return to your pre-Covid lifestyle as much as possible.
Symptoms of Post-Covid Headaches
Several types of headaches can occur after Covid: tension headaches, cluster headaches, and migraine headaches. While there are similarities with the symptoms, a few different symptoms might occur based on the types of headaches you are experiencing.
Patients who have already experienced frequent headaches before Covid might notice that this virus makes the headaches worse or more frequent. Patients who don’t usually suffer from headaches might experience headaches going forward.
Symptoms of Covid headaches might include:
- Dull, pulsing, stabbing, or pressing pain in the head
- Whole-head pressure
- Headaches that don’t go away with standard pain medication
- Pain that causes light or sound sensitivity
- Nausea or vomiting
The headaches might be frequent, with symptoms that come and go throughout the day or week. Or, some patients experience a never-ending discomfort, with pain that lingers at all times.
Treatment Options for Post-Covid Headaches
You can try a few at-home treatments to relieve Covid-related headaches, such as:
- Over-the-Counter Medications: Pain relievers, such as Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Advil (ibuprofen), can effectively manage mild Covid headaches. Follow the dosage guidelines on the packaging.
- Hydration: Make sure you are getting enough water. Dehydration can increase the risk of headaches, so you should drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and replenish your body.
- Head Compresses: A cool or warm compress on the forehead can help to relieve symptoms. For example, soak a washcloth in cold or warm water, then wring it out to get rid of excess water. Next, lay the cloth on your forehead for 15 minutes at a time.
- Prescription Medications: If you aren’t finding relief from at-home treatments, talk to a Covid specialist about prescription medications. These more potent medicines can relieve some ongoing pressure.
Additionally, other treatments might provide relief, depending on the specific symptoms you are experiencing and the severity of your headaches. Sometimes, headaches can be a sign of an underlying health condition, which is why it’s essential to consult with a provider whenever the symptoms are lingering or intense.