There are numerous types of headaches. Some headaches are stress-related, while others get triggered by a lack of sleep or by not taking your daily dose of caffeine. For those who have an occasional headache, taking over-the-counter pain relievers usually gets rid of it. Some people get migraines, for which prescription drugs may be necessary. Others choose to go the more natural route to treat their headaches, including things like massage therapy or seeing a chiropractor.
If you experience headaches on a regular basis despite your best efforts, it might a sign of an underlying medical problem. Headaches could even signify that something is wrong with your vision. If you get frequent headaches, you should call your optometrist to schedule an eye exam.
Eye Conditions that Cause Headaches
Getting an eye exam can help to determine if vision problems are causing your frequent headaches. During an eye exam, an optometrist will do a thorough evaluation to help you determine if you are having vision problems. Any of the following conditions can cause headaches:
If your vision is blurry, you might have an astigmatism. This condition means you have an irregularly-shaped cornea. Besides blurry vision and frequent headaches, other symptoms of astigmatism include squinting, eye discomfort, and eye fatigue. It's not uncommon for astigmatism to occur with other types of refractive errors.
If you can see objects that are far away better than when they are near, you probably have an eye condition called hyperopia, which is commonly referred to as farsightedness. Presbyopia is the opposite of hyperopia. If you have presbyopia, it means you can see objects that are close better than if they are far away. This is also called nearsightedness. Both of these conditions cause eye strain, which in turn can cause frequent headaches.
Cataracts and glaucoma are other eye conditions that cause headaches, but these conditions typically happen in older patients.
Treatment for Vision Problems
If you have an astigmatism or hyperopia, you will probably need corrective contact lenses or eyeglasses. Once your vision returns back to normal, your eye strain will be alleviated and your headaches should go away. If you are diagnosed with presbyopia, you might only need reading glasses, which will help you see things up close more clearly. In some instances, you may need prescription eyeglasses, bifocals, or trifocals.
If you don't remember the last time you had an eye exam and you are experiencing frequent headaches, it's a good idea to get your eyes checked. Visit an optometrist near you in order to get help.