Parietal headache: causes and treatment

You may feel a lot of heaviness at the top of your head. Headaches can have many causes, learn about them in this article.

Parietal headache

Parietal headache

After a long day at work, you may feel heaviness at the top of your head, causing a painful headache that gradually spreads to the back of your head.

Different types of headaches have different causes and can be accompanied by different symptoms depending on the cause.

Causes of parietal headache

Causes and conditions that can cause pain and pressure at the top of the head include the following:

Tension headache

It is one of the most common types of headaches, and the pain spreads from the forehead, temples, and behind the eyes to the entire head.

These headaches usually last from 30 minutes to several hours, but in some cases, they may last for days or months.


Migraines cause pain at the top of the head and may also occur on one side of the head or in the back of the head.


Cold hands.

The appearance of circles.

Sensitivity to light and sound.

Cluster headache.

Cluster headaches are rare but can cause pain around the eyes, temples, or forehead. Other symptoms include:

Anxiety and anger.

Runny nose.

Nasal congestion.

Tears and swollen eyes.

Sinus headache.

Sinusitis and swelling can cause pain in the forehead and around the eyes, i.e. parietalgia and headache.

Headache due to lack of sleep

Headaches caused by lack of sleep can occur in anyone and are usually associated with heaviness and pressure at the top of the head combined with pain.

High blood pressure headache

Severe high blood pressure causes pressure on the skull, resulting in severe pain at the top of the head as if it were being pulled by a hair.

Associated nerve pain

Damage or compression of the nerves extending from the spine to the scalp causes a headache at the top of the head.

Other symptoms include:

Pain similar to an electric shock.

The pain increases with increased movement.

Ice cream headache.

A headache caused by cold stimuli, known as an ice cream headache, occurs quickly near the top of the head and usually lasts only a few seconds.

Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RCVS) headache.

A rare condition in which blood vessels in the brain constrict, causing a severe headache near the parietal area, which may lead to a stroke or bleeding.

Other symptoms include severe weakness and blurred vision.

Parietal headache

Treatment of parietal headaches

Treatment for parietal headaches can include:

1- Medicines

Pain relievers are often the first line of defense against headaches: acetaminophen (Tylenol) can effectively reduce headache symptoms.

For severe headaches and migraines, beta blockers and antidepressants may be tried.

2- Other treatments

The following treatments are available: 

Increase the amount of sleep.

Reduce stress.

Maintain good posture when sitting, especially at work, such as sitting in a comfortable chair.

Fatigue neuralgia can be treated with physical therapy, massage, and warm compresses.

Reversible cerebral vasospasm syndrome can be treated without treatment, but calcium channel blockers may help reduce headaches caused by this condition.

Headaches caused by high blood pressure require immediate emergency treatment to reduce the risk of cerebral hemorrhage or stroke.

However, the following less urgent treatments can also help reduce headaches: a low-salt diet and regular exercise.

When should you visit a doctor?

Severe headache should be reported to the doctor if the following complications are present:

Persistent headache that gets worse over time.

Changes in mental ability.

Mood swings.

Headaches that wake you up during sleep.

Headaches in people with a weak immune system or cancer patients.

Stiffness in the neck.

Fever and fatigue.

Overlapping speech.

Blurred vision.

Anyone experiencing these symptoms should seek immediate medical attention and a professional diagnosis.


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