Headache Disorders Diagnosis and Treatment

Headaches can range from occasional tension headaches to daily, crippling chronic migraines. They can occur anywhere in the head, face or neck. We work closely with our patients to determine the cause of headache. With the use of headache journals, dietary and lifestyle modifications, medication management, and involvement of the patient’s health care team, we hope to reduce patients’ headache attack frequency and severity. If you struggle with headaches or migraines in Reno, Nevada, call Northern Nevada Center for Orofacial Pain today at 775-583-7755 to schedule a consultation with our orofacial pain practitioner, Dr. Kim.

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Headache Disorders

The International Classification of Headache Disorders classifies primary headaches into four categories: migraine, tension type, trigeminal autonomic cephalgias and other headaches. While headaches are quite common, chronic headaches or severe episodic headaches can be debilitating and warrant an evaluation, as they might be a symptom of another condition, such as an ocular disorder, nutrient deficiency, underlying medical condition or excessive use of over-the-counter medications.

Most people are unaware that orofacial pain specialists have formal training in treating both chronic and isolated headaches. The International Headache Society (IHS) separates headaches using the International Classification of Headache Disorders (ICHD). This system divides headache into four main categories. The primary headaches include migraine, tension type headaches, trigeminal autonomic cephalgias and other primary headache disorders.

Dr. Kim has had many years of experience treating headache while in the orofacial pain residency. This included training under the guidance of neurologists, neurosurgeons and pharmacologists, and she also had the opportunity to train with headache fellows at Mayo Clinic’s Headache Fellowship Program, the Pain Clinic at Cedars Sinai Hospital and neurologists in private practice. Dr. Kim regularly attends headache conferences held by the American Headache Society and Headache Cooperative of the Pacific.

What Are the Most Commonly Treated Problems

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Tension type headache

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Trigeminal Autonomic Cephalgias (cluster headache, paroxysmal hemicrania, hemicrania continua, SUNCT, SUNA)

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Other primary headaches

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Medication overuse headache

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Temporal arteritis

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It is not uncommon for an orofacial pain patient to have seen multiple medical and dental providers. The majority of sleep apnea patients are not aware that there are other alternatives to CPAP therapy. If you suffer from orofacial pain or sleep apnea, call us today to schedule a consultation.

Diagnosis & Treatment of Headache

Treatment Options May Include

  • Pharmacotherapy (medications)
  • Trigger point and nerve block injections
  • BOTOX® injections
  • Lifestyle, diet and sleep hygiene modifications
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy


The diagnosis of headaches typically begins with notating history and recording headache quality, duration and severity. It is also important to communicate any family history of headaches, potential triggers and if there are any associated symptoms such as eye tearing, nasal congestion, eye redness or numbness.

Once a diagnosis is made, a treatment plan is created with the patient. Preventive medications may include tricyclic antidepressants, beta blockers, anti-seizure medications, NSAIDs and CGRP antagonists. Abortive medications may also be prescribed.

Dr. Kim will also assess lifestyle issues that may aggravate headaches. This may include sleep disturbances, posture, caffeine use, screen time overuse and diet.

Insurance We Accept

We are a non-participating provider with Medicare Part B. We also accept Medicare DME and Prominence Health Plan (Commercial and Medicare Advantage Plans).

If you have questions or need additional information, please give us a call.