Brightmore University held its 2nd presentation in our health series for the New Year with Dr. Francis O’Donnell, DO/Headache Specialist NHRMC, Physician Group/Neurology, to speak on headaches and when a headache is not just a headache and may need more attention. Dr. O’Donnell started his Neurology practice in Ohio and moved to Wilmington six months ago to work with NHRMC. He educated participants on the symptoms of migraine, tension and other common headache types and when to be concerned that a headache might be secondary to some other condition. It’s very rare to meet someone who has never had a headache before, therefore headaches are experienced by most individuals. If you have tension/stress headaches or have ongoing migraines that you have grown up with, you know how they feel and you know what triggers them. It’s when you start having pains that are not normal for your head and have never experienced before that you should be concerned and go to your doctor. There are several types of concerning headaches, those called Thundercap, which sudden intense pain begins within seconds and accelerates quickly; and Cluster Headaches, which is a series of relatively short but extremely painful headaches every day for weeks or months at a time. You tend to get them at the same time each year. As you grow older, arthritis in your neck can also cause headaches. Head Trauma, posture, pregnancy, diet and nutrition, hormones, weather and lifestyle are just a few factors that create red flags to a neurologist and requires extra attention. Most headaches can be treated with diet, nutrition and lifestyle changes, medication and/or therapy.