The frequent headaches last between 6 to 12 weeks. The start and end of the cluster duration is consistent. Some people experience it on a specific day in summer and it ends on a specific date. The duration dates differ from one person to another depending on the cause and body resistance.
Some people experience episodic cluster headaches. In this case, the pain period ranges from one week to 12 months. It can be consistent for all the 12 months. Usually, it is a frustrating experience because medical examination may not yield any specific results with regards to causes hence no definite treatment plan.
An episodic cluster headache period is often followed by a remission where an individual is free from pain. A remission can go up to 12 months. If no effective treatment method is practiced during this period, the headaches will resume after the remission period. A remission period can be as long as a year or less than a month.
Characteristics of cluster periods
Headaches vary widely; identifying a specific headache is crucial to determining a suitable and effective treatment technique. Cluster periods differ in people; it is important to note the specific start and end dates of your cluster period to determine when to use certain medication. Also, it is crucial to determine characteristics of a cluster period to avoid mistaking a mild headache from a long day at work with cluster headaches.
Here is what happens during cluster periods;
- The attacks occur at exactly same time everyday
- An attack can last for at least 15 minutes to 3 hours
- Headaches are consistent every day; at times, the headaches occur several times in a day.
- The attacks happen at night, few hours after you go to bed.
Cluster headaches are sudden; they begin suddenly and the pain intensity rapidly increases. The pain also ends suddenly. Usually, an affected individual feels exhausted after the end of an attack. The short period is intense.