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Headache

Carlota feels as if a monkey with cymbals has crawled up her nostrils and organized a concert in the middle of her brain.

 

Carlota has such a bad headache that she would be prepared to swop her head for Paul’s, the boy with the longest snot and the most pimples in the world.

 


What is a headache?


        

Headache is the most common way of saying that we have cephalalgia, which means “head” in Greek. It is a feeling of pain in the skull, which means the set of bones that form the head. Inside the skull there is the brain.

Carlota is the only one in the school who has two big toes on her right foot. However, she is not the only one with a headache. Almost everyone has suffered from cephalalgia at some time in their life. It doesn’t always hurt in the same place when we have cephalalgia
We can feel the pain:
 

- Around our nose (in the lowest part of the forehead and the cheekbones).

- Around one eye.

- Around our head, as if a ribbon was tightening around it.

- On one side of our head.


Why do we have headaches?

Very often, a headache is a symptom. It is letting us know that we are sick, or that there is something in our body that is not alright. It may come with: a temperature, a sore tummy, flu or a toothache.

We can have headaches for many reasons. Here are a few examples:

  

 

 

Carlota has a headache because she is excited. Tomorrow she is going on an excursion for a few days. EXCITEMENT

 

 

Ahmed has watched such a scary film that his shoulders, neck and jaw are all tense. The tension has given him a headache. TENSION

 

 

 

Nadia has had very little sleep. When she has a rest she will certainly feel better. TIREDNESS

 

 

 

Louis’s budgie has died. The boy has cried for such a long time that now he feels as if something was bouncing around inside his head. SADNESS

 

 

 

Judith has spent the whole afternoon studying. She hasn’t even lifted her eyes from the book to have an afternoon snack. WORKING TOO MUCH

 

 

 

Today Paula has been to school, to a piano class, to buy an outfit for the dance festival with her father, to visit her grandmother and to fetch her brother from a birthday party. And it’s only seven o’clock in the evening! STRESS (TOO MANY WORRIES)

 

 

 

Xavi is such a scatterbrain that he forgot to have his afternoon snack. He hasn’t eaten anything since one o’clock in the middle of the day and now it is nine o’clock in the evening. SKIPPING MEALS

 

 

 

Maria has spent the whole of Sunday afternoon playing videogames non-stop. TENSION/TIRED VISION

 

 

There is food that can be related to headaches, like chocolate or cheese.


Migraines

There is a headache that is so annoying that everybody knows it by its real name: the migraine.

 

This cephalalgia can last for from a few hours to several days. It often appears without warning, accompanied by vomiting. Migraine crises affect the daily life of those who suffer them, because they cannot work, or do what they had planned with their friends; they have to lie down in bed with the light off and in complete silence.

 

Carlota doesn’t have a migraine. Migraines mostly affect people between 30 and 40 years of age. If you are with somebody who has a migraine, you should try to be quiet and leave that person in peace.

 

 


What should we do when we have a headache?

There is nothing that can definitively cure a headache. But, there are medicines that can be very helpful. The chemist will advise you which one is the most suitable.

Is Carlota sleeping? It’s six o’clock in the afternoon!
She is not sleeping, she is recovering. Resting with the eyes closed and the head on a pillow can be helpful. Even a massage can help us, depending on the kind of headache that we have.

When you have a headache, it is advisable to avoid eating cheese, chocolate or cured meats.

 

 

Headaches are respectful of night-time rest. When we sleep, the headache sleeps too. That doesn’t mean that, when we wake up, the headache will be the first one to say good morning to us (or would it be bad morning?) :-)).


Preventing headaches

We cannot avoid having the occasional headache, but following this list will certainly help us to avoid it sometimes. Remember:

 

 

 


Sleep well.

 

 

 


Eat following the food pyramid.

  Do exercise.
  Keep the body in the right posture.

 

Take short breaks.
  Try not to get excited (eh, Carlota…).
  Have your eyesight checked.

 

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