What is the difference between a migraine and a headache?

January 22nd, 2019

The difference between a migraine headache and a tension headache is that while a tension headache involves the muscles and fascia of the scalp and neck tightening and causing pain, a migraine involves a large chemical change that affects the entire body. Blood vessels in the brain become wider, serotonin is lowered, and nerves misfire – causing severe pain – along with a host of other symptoms like those mentioned above that usually do not occur in non-migraine headaches.

Headache Migraine
Duration Hours to days 4 to 72 hours
Location Over the entire head Often one-sided but not always
Intensity of Pain Mild to moderate Often Severe
Nature Dull, pressing Pounding, throbbing, increases with activity
Other Symptoms Minimal to none Nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, sound, odors